Newest Review: ... or heading towards the monorail station. I prefer to do it that way. You can buy tickets on the entrance or pick up pre ordered tickets th... more
Fun day out for family and friends
Alton Towers (Staffordshire)
Member Name: joey92
Alton Towers (Staffordshire)
Date: 31/07/12, updated on 31/07/12 (124 review reads)
Advantages: Brilliant day out for friends or family
Alton Towers is one of Britain's best known theme parks, situated in the countryside of Staffordshire near Uttoxeter and Stoke on Trent.
Now, if you're not sure how to get here, it can be quite tricky. The best way to do it if you're not sure is to head to Uttoxeter and then follow the clear signs to Alton Towers. It's probably best to get a map as well. Towns you will go through after Uttoxeter are Denstone and the village of Alton. If you are a new driver (like me) the roads are incredibly steep and windy. There are also busses running from Stoke for guests and staff.
The park is huge, it takes about half an hour to walk from one end to the other! At Alton Towers, there is not only a theme park, but multiple conference facilities for business corporate events, a selection of luxury and family friendly hotels and the water park Splash Landings along with restaurants, bars and of course the theme park.
At Halloween and other special occasions, they run themed events such as the Halloween Scarefest.
--The Theme Park--
There are SO many rides, for the fearless and the uncertain. Here's a little summary of some of the main ones in the order we went round.
This is a newer ride, involving a sharp drop and a "scary" theme. You sit down and are held in your seat by a bar which makes the adrenaline rush more intense when you drop. There is a surprise halfway round which I won't disclose.
Rita Queen of Speed
0-60 in 3 seconds or something ridiculous, this is a real adrenaline ride. Make sure to keep your head back in the seat like I didn't as it can really put stress on your neck!!
This is one of the most popular rides, for a reason. One of the older rollercoasters on the park, the track squeaks horrendously as you climb then you are taken round in loops and upside downs (which I am not fond of!) and a minute or so later, its all over. The queues weren't too bad last time we went but I can remember the queues being an hour long the first time I visited!
Bath Tub Ride
I can't remember the name of this one but it's sponsored by a soap company. This is very cold and very wet, with a larger splash depending on how heavy the people at the front are!!
You sit in a large ring and bob round the "river" with people from the side paying £1 a go to spray you with water - I got hit in the face!
This is a unique rollercoaster in that you are horizontal to the ground, to imitate a feeling of flying. Quite a gentle coaster for your first rollercoaster! I used to be scared of rollercoasters but I loved this one when I was 12!!
I went on Oblivion for the first time last time I visited the park and you get a gorgeous view from the top of the countryside then you are plunged into a dark hole! This is quite an old coaster as well so don't be alarmed if they take you off the ride (as they did with us!) for regular checks. My new favourite ride!!
This is a psychological ride, as it seems like you are spinning round and round when in fact you are swaying gently from side to side.
This ride tells the story of the curse which Alton Towers was built around and is a good one for the kids especially!
You are held upside down while jets spurt water at you! I was lucky enough not to get *too* wet on this one but everyone else got soaked!! I wouldn't advise this if you have just eaten!
The Runaway Mine Train
This ride made me laugh a lot, if only because of the guy who was running it having to repeat the words "Choo choo" a million times over in a very VERY sarcastic tone of voice. A fun gentler rollercoaster for the kids (oh and the big kids like me!)
While you are on the rides, there are places to store luggage and coats. I wouldn't recommend taking anything too valuable that you wouldn't want to lose. Don't have your phone or anything important in your pocket on the upside down rides or the water rides!
--Pricing and Availability--
You can buy tickets on the door but it is probably recommended to book in advance to avoid all the ticket queues. You can buy online from their website at www.altontowers.com. I find the ticket prices pretty extortionate for a day out at £43.50 for an adult on the door. You can get 40% discount by booking online at a slightly more reasonable £26.10. Pay £19.10 per person if you go as a family. Child tickets are priced at £20 online, though on the door both of these are more expensive.
It is then a matter of printing tickets online. I guess I'm lucky as my other half works at Alton Towers so when we went on a day out with two of our friends we all got in for free and we didn't have to queue for tickets!!
There are a few extra costs involved in your day out. Food and drink is priced at the kind of prices you would expect at an attraction. £8 for a burger at a sit down restaurant or £4 for a Burger King, then £5 for a Panini which is what I had.
The car park is extortionate at £6 for a car parking space for the day which would make me feel ripped off if I had paid full ticket price, so it really is a day out for a special occasion.
--Food and Drink--
There are a number of food and drink outlets around the park. You can get a refillable drink for £5 for the day which is good value if you are sharing! We shared this between four of us so it cost £1.25 for fizzy drinks all day (would have been good to have some water too but can't complain at the price!)
I had a Panini with my boyfriend's staff discount and it came to £3.50 so it would be £4.50 at full price. There was a Mexican outlet, many burger outlets, a fried chicken place and a few mini restaurants as well as many kiosks offering snacks and drinks.
One thing I would say is that there are limited options for healthy food which I was really craving on the day so take a picnic if you are uncertain of spending a lot on junk food!
--The Car park--
The main car park is some distance from the actual park, but there is a cable car which takes you across the park called the Skyride.
A great day out for friends or family, but recommended for a treat as the prices are so high!
Summary: Brilliant day out :)
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