Snowdonia’s Family Adventure Park
Reviewed by Katy Lowe
On Saturday the 30th of May we packed up the kids in the car and headed to Wales to visit GreenWood Forest Park for the day.
When we arrived we parked up and followed signs to the entrance and were greeted by a friendly face who handed us a site map and additional leaflets. Our 4 year old was pretty excited and ready to burst especially when he spotted a real life pirate walking around!
Our first impressions when we walked through the gates and into the park were amazing… I’m not sure what I was expecting but the whole place had a real outdoorsy stress-free open feel.
After sitting in the car for a few hours it was only fair that we took Harry, our bursting 4 year old, to the Roller Coaster (which we had promised him over and over again every time he asked “are we nearly there yet!”).
This Roller Coaster is not just any roller coaster – it’s the world’s only people powered one! It was mind blowing watching it in action! This is how it works:
‘The ride combines traditional roller coasters with funicular technology that was developed and used 200 years ago in the slate quarries of North Wales. Once it starts, the ride itself is gravity driven but it is at the very beginning where we turn people power into the energy we need. This energy is used to pull the coaster cars up to the starting point. Pulling the cars to the top of the ride is where the old slate quarry technology comes in. Having walked up the coaster hill, visitors enter a people carrier and travel down an incline. This descent, through the use of the slate quarry technology, pulls the cars up to the station. Passengers then leave the carrier and walk up the hill a second time to the station where they enter the cars for the ride itself. This reaches a top speed of 25mph and covers a distance of 250 meters. At the end of the ride, the cars stop on a moveable platform at the bottom of the hill where the passengers alight before the cars are pulled back up to the station by the next group of visitors.’ GreenWood’s Eco Factsheet information.
Harry had never been on a roller coaster before and he absolutely loved it! He only just made the height though which was a massive relief!!
Afterwards we carried on exploring the rest of the park, the natural flow of people headed in one direction but it was never stressful or pushy just a nice relaxing walk through trees coming across different rides and activities around each corner!
The whole place was in very good condition, very clean and tidy. You could tell some of the areas had been there since it opened in 1993, but they still looked good and not dated like some places we have visited in the past. Everywhere I looked I noticed GreenWood staff walking around or serving refreshments in designated areas, if you needed to ask a question you wouldn’t have to look hard to find someone to give you an answer.
I was a bit dubious about also taking along our 7 month old with the pram as I was unsure how easy it would be to get around, but it was absolutely fine! I would recommend also taking a baby carrier to mix up the day between the pram and being carried as it would have been a long day to be sat in the pram. They did however have a soft play section that he could have sat down and had a play in, but he was happy looking around and watching his big brother playing.
After the bare foot walk which was lots of fun, we headed back to where we started to have a cup of tea and some chips. The service was excellent and the chips were really yummy! With the lovely big clean toilets nearby and also great baby changing facilities we then headed to the roller coaster again for another go! At 16:00 we sat down in the Forest Theatre ready for the live show with Ricardo the Pirate that Harry had spotted earlier on! It was lots of fun and a great ending to our wonderful family day out!
Our overall experience was brilliant! We had a great time and I can’t honestly fault anything from the day! We did say though that our experience might be slightly different if the weather was poor.
We can’t wait to return again especially with talks of a new ride opening in 2016!
I would rate this venue for a family day of fun as 5 out of 5!!
Tickets cost from £7.65 (child) to £11.90 (adult), or why not take advantage on an annual pass from £35 to £38 with discounts for additional children (see website for full pricing details).
For more information or to book tickets visit www.greenwoodforestpark.co.uk.
GreenWood Forest Park, Y Felinheli, Gwynedd, LL56 4QN | 01248 670076