“ Address: The Strand / Deal / Kent / Tel: 01304 375029 „
Walmer paddling pool is a free attraction located in Walmer, Kent. It is sited near to the beach front, and is a lovely alternative to using the stony beach for families with young children. It is in an attractive part of the Green at Walmer, not far from the lifeboat hut and the Band stand.
The paddling pool is a large outdoor paddling pool, approximately 15m by 5m in size as guessed by my husband as I am pretty useless at that sort of measurement. There are a number of other facilities on the site, which is surrounded by a wall of adult chest height.
The site is open between 10am and 6pm in the months of June, July and August, and is aimed at under 10 year olds. This is weather dependent though. There is a cafe/shop on site, which serves hot and cold refreshments, toilets and changing facilities.
There is also a games area with a bouncy castle and giant games like connect 4 which you pay for. £1.20 for 10 minutes, or £2.50 for the whole day. Or, if you prefer golf, there is a miniature putting green you can use, which is £1.20 per adult or £0.70 per child.
The pool itself was the feature we were drawn to. The day we used it, it was not that warm, so it wasn't really somewhere we wanted to spend all day at, but nevertheless, we enjoyed a couple of hours there while the kids were splashing away in the pool. The pool is very shallow the whole way across, but it is ramped in on one side, and enough to cover a small childs legs at the deepest point. At most a couple of feet deep.
There are lifeguards there, but really it is the sort of place you take your children and watch them yourself. It is recommended that under 4s are with a responsible adult, so I would not be able to go on my own with both kids, but we could go as a family as we had one child each to supervise.
We could have bought some inflatables that were being sold in the shop/cafe. The most popular definitely seemed to be the whale while we were there, and the lifeguard had a convenient air line to pump them up, saving the poor parents who were pestered into buying them from having to blow them up.
We could also have rented ourselves deckchairs at a reasonable 80p each, but we just took towels and sat on the grassy area around the pool. Others had picnic blankets they were sat on.
The cafe also was very reasonably priced for this sort of venue. Drinks of the hot and cold variety were around a pound, and there were hot and cold sandwiches for between £2 and £2.60. A kids meal of a burger, or nuggets or sausages with chips were about £2.50, or just the burger or the chips for about £1.50. There were also snacks like biscuits, crisps and chocolate bars.
It is not the sort of place where I feel you could spend all day, as being on the sea front even on the warmest day you are likely to feel cold with the sea breeze. You can definitely pass a few hours here though, and it will be as cheap or as expensive as you want to make it depending on the reasonably priced activities you would like to do.
If you are holidaying in Kent and are looking at entertaining smaller children, then it is an enjoyable place to pass some time with them. Recommended by my boys, who want to go back if we are in the area again.