Saturday, 18 November 2017

Santa's Cove at Liffey Valley ~ Magical Enough for the Price Tag?




Last night we were invited to Santa's Cove in Liffey Valley for their preview, it would have cost us €137.50 for 1 adult & 5 kids, which is an exceptional amount of money to spend on the run up to Christmas, so did we think it was worth it? Unfortunately no and here's why...

Tuesday, 14 November 2017

Family Road Trip ~ North West UK ~ Part 4 Diggerland!



So far on our road trip in North West UK we’ve been to Llandudno, Liverpool and Blackpool. This week I’ll tell you about the highlight of our holiday, a trip to Diggerland in Yorkshire! It’s billed as ‘The Ultimate Adventure Park Experience’ and they’re not wrong.

Where is Diggerland?


Diggerland has four locations across the UK, Durham, Devon, Kent and the one we visited in Yorkshire.


What is Diggerland?

It’s only the best theme park we’ve visited so far in the UK and we’ve been to a lot over the past couple of years. Imagine waving bye to your little 5 year old as he takes off down a super muddy track driving a JCB Robot (JCB Skid Steer Loader) on his OWN! 

Well I did and he had such great fun that he immediately jumped back on the end of the small queue to do it again (and again). Kids get to drive and operate full sized construction vehicles, whilst there are restrictions on speed rotation etc it doesn’t take away from the thrill of operating a real digger. 

I don’t know who had more fun the kids or my husband. It’s not just for boys either my 10 year old twin daughters absolutely loved it and have decided it should be top of the list of places to go in the UK with kids.


Are there any height restrictions?

Yes there are restrictions on some rides so your smallest child should be over 80cm in height so they can go on rides and drives with an adult. There are also a few £1 coin operated rides for younger children but they have to be over 2 years of age to ride them. 

Diggerland is aimed at children aged between 4 - 14 years of age. We went with our 10 year old twins, our 9 year old, our 5 year old and our 2 1/2 year old and they all got to go on almost everything there. They didn’t feel like they missed out on anything. There’s a full list if height restrictions on their website diggerland.com


Would you need a full day at Diggerland?

You could do it in a half day if the park isn’t busy but you’d be rushing around, we took a full day to make the most of our visit. Our 5 little ones got to ride nearly all of the rides, the ones they liked they got to go on twice and the rides they loved 4 or 5 times! 

Diggerland also has an indoor soft play centre, a Little Tikes wheelz play zone, café and shop. I was very impressed with the prices in the shop as they had Diggerland branded kids t-shirts from just £4.95 & lots of pocket money priced bits and pieces for kids such as pencils & rubbers, they even had Diggerland medals for 99p! Needless to say we left with a few bags of clothes, toys and souvenirs for our 5 that cost a lot less than I thought it would.


How much is admission to Diggerland?


On the day prices: £19.95/€22.37 per adult/child over 90cm tall, over 65’s £9.95/€11.16 however you can avail of discounted tickets by booking online in advance of your visit. Adults & children over 90cm tall are £16.99/€19.05 while over 65’s are £7.99/€8.96. Children under 90cm are admitted to the Diggerland free of charge, there’s also ample free car parking. Sign up to Diggerland’s newsletter as they occasionally send out special offers. For our visit we received a complimentary family of 4 pass so we paid for 3 of our children.


Stone Travel Tip:

If you’re planning on going with a couple of friends you should look into booking a birthday party to make it extra special and save a few pound too. Parties are priced at just £16.99/€19.05 per child with a minimum booking of 10 children. 

For that price you receive, personalised party invitations, unlimited rides and drives, free entry for 4 adults per 10 children, party food for all children including free Diggerland lunch bags to take home, Diggerland balloons & a certificate for each child. Or you could book standard admission and avail of a group rate (minimum 10 people) by booking online at least 14 days in advance of your trip for £13.99/€16.69 per person.


Where to stay?

We visited Diggerland as part of our UK road trip so we had our Mammy van. We stayed in Holiday Inn Express Leeds East paying £46/€51.59 per room for 2 adults & 2 kids B&B. The hotel suited us just fine; it was clean with friendly staff and free parking. While the breakfast had limited options cereal, toast and tea did the job nicely. 

We made the mistake of going to the Toby Carvery that’s right beside the hotel; it was way overpriced for what it was. We should have gone to Leeds city centre for dinner instead. Diggerland is located just 5 miles away from the hotel so it was less than a 10 minute drive. If you like Haribo there’s a Haribo factory nearby where they sell large bags at a discounted price.


How do I get to Diggerland?

Diggerland Durham: Newcastle airport would be the closest airport at 26 miles distance.

Diggerland Yorkshire: The closest airport is Leeds Bradford 24 miles away from Diggerland.

Diggerland Devon: is located just 14 miles from Exeter airport, Flybe regularly fly this route from Dublin airport.

Diggerland Kent: You could fly into any London airport and get the train to Kent or hire a car however Gatwick is the closest airport at a distance of 40 miles.

Have you been to Diggerland? What did you think?

Check back next time when we conclude our UK road trip with a visit to Leeds Royal Armouries and the medieval city of Chester!


*** Disclaimer: 
As advised above
we received 4 complimentary tickets 
to Diggerland. As usual all thoughts 
are my own, I was not asked to write 
this review. As ever neither free services 
nor payment would ever sway my opinion.***

Wednesday, 4 October 2017

The Advent of a Little Luxury Every Day with the Launch of L'Occitane's 2017 Advent Calendars!


L'Occitane will always be synonymous with luxury skincare & beauty so what if I told you you could have a little luxury every single day in the run up to Christmas? Well that's exactly what my fave French brand have asked me to do. Enter two of the most covetable beauty advent calendars on the market as L'Occitane release both their classic and luxurious versions this week, you have to see them to believe them. You also have to be quick to get 'em!


Tuesday, 3 October 2017

Spike Island Wins Europe's Leading Tourist Attraction 2017 - Peek Inside 1300 Years of History on “Ireland’s Alcatraz”



The first thing that comes to mind when I think of Spike Island is prison, as it is said to be “Ireland’s Alcatraz” but peel back the layers of history and you’ll be surprised lies beneath. So impressive is the attraction that it has just been named Europe’s leading tourist attraction at the 2017 World Travel Awards! The former prison was up against some of the world’s most well-known attractions including the Eiffel Tower, Roman Colosseum and Buckingham Palace.

We’ve been to Cobh many times as Cork is one of our favourite counties to visit in Ireland. Every time we go though I am drawn in by the Titanic Museum or the Titanic Bar & Grill or some of the other superb things to see & do in Cobh. This time however we left Kildare in Mammy Van with our sights firmly set on the mysterious Spike Island.


Tuesday, 19 September 2017

Family Road Trip ~ North West UK ~ Part 3 Blackpool Pleasure Beach!

We’re onto our third destination of our road trip across the North West of the UK, we’ve already covered Llandudno & Liverpool, this week it’s the turn of Blackpool. Located 55 miles north of Liverpool it took us just under an hour and a half to drive to Blackpool Pleasure Beach.