Tuesday, May 09, 2017

Epic England Road Trip ~ Part 1 ~ The Big Sheep!

Welcome to our Epic England Road Trip. We're going to show you just how easy it is to take to the road, no matter where that road is. This time around, we decided on England. I priced a few different options but eventually settled on a ferry to Wales and a road trip across the south of England to see the best of what’s on offer for families. 

Stick with us over the next couple of weeks as I detail our Epic England Road Trip that includes visits to the National Motor Museum, Chessington, Stonehenge & Bath among others but this week we’ll kick off the series with a trip to The Big Sheep one of Devon’s premier attractions.

How to get there:

We booked Irish Ferries from Rosslare to Pembroke for 2 adults and 5 kids including our Mammy Van for £292.61/€346.52 for 8 days over the Easter mid-term break. It’s a 3 hour 40 minute drive from Pembroke to Barnstaple where we were staying. We had planned to visit Avon Valley Railway on the way but instead we broke up our trip with a visit to the Brecon Beacons to lunch with some of our favourite people, my brother, his wife and their beautiful son a.k.a. BattleDad & BattleMum.

Where to stay:

As we were doing this trip on a budget we mainly chose Travelodge’s or Premier Inn’s for the duration of our road trip. Our first night we stayed in Travelodge Barnstaple (EX31 3RZ) as it’s just a 15 minute drive from The Big Sheep. We received a lovely warm welcome, check-in was very efficient and we had no issues. The room was the same as every other Travelodge we’ve stayed in clean and comfortable which does the job perfectly when all you want is somewhere to sleep. We paid £64/€75.81 for 1 night room only for 2 adults & 2 kids. *cough*

Where to eat:

There’s a KFC right beside the Travelodge in Barnstaple but we chose to go into town a few miles away for dinner. We had a delicious traditional fish & chip dinner in the Silver Cod takeaway and restaurant costing £40/€47.31 for our family of 7 including drinks. We went to Asda just around the corner from Travelodge to have breakfast in their cafe, our bill was £22/€26 a full English breakfast for all the family.

The Big Sheep:

As most of you will know by now my 5 year old Cillian is sheep mad so I couldn’t believe it when I came across The Big Sheep Family Attraction (EX39 5AP) when I was researching our trip. There’s so much to keep your whole family entertained both indoors and outdoors, they’ve 7 rides including a roller coaster, vintage carousel, swan pedalos and a twister ride. There’s Archery, a splash zone, mountain boarding, laser tag and lots of other areas of entertainment throughout the park.

We absolutely loved the live shows especially Cillian as he got to get up close to sheep and even feed lambs. Of the 7 shows that are on throughout the day we made sure to attend them all and we weren’t disappointed, the guys hosting the shows were hilarious and kept both the children and adults entertained with their corny dad jokes and witty banter. 

I was surprised to find there’s an onsite brewery at The Big Sheep so I went along to the beer show while my husband brought the children to a sheep show sure it’d be rude not to. I also had to sit in the sun & enjoy a beer while I waited for their show to end, it was tough but I managed it!

We had lunch in The Barn Cafe, my husband & I shared a tasty chicken roll and a big bowl of chips while the children tucked into healthy kids lunch boxes costing £36/€42.54 for the 7 of us. Cillian was unsure of the twister ride; it’s a flying chair ride so I told him he didn’t have to go on it if he didn’t want to. Zach the ride operator heard this & came over to talk to Cillian and reassured him that he wouldn’t go fast or high if he didn’t want to. 

Cillian jumped on & Zach asked him to give him thumbs down if he wanted to get off or thumbs up if he wanted to stay on. I ended up waiting a long time as they loved it so much they stayed on for 6 go’s! We had a wonderful day and the staff really made it for us as the whole park has such a friendly laid back atmosphere not at all like your usual frenzied theme park experience.

Our visit was complimentary. Avail of a 20% discount on door prices by buying tickets online priced at £11.16/€13.22 for adults & children over 3ft in height, for children under 3ft tickets are £4.80/€5.69. For further information visit HERE.

Have you been to The Big Sheep? Is there anywhere else in Devon you’d recommend?

*** Disclaimer: As advised above we received complimentary admission to The Big Sheep. 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. ***


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