Really enjoyed our day at the castle.
We didn’t arrive until around 1pm, queued for tickets, then was told we needed to go to another booth to validate our tickets for the year. So we went straight there and queued again. Does seem odd that they can’t do this for you automatically when you purchase your tickets.
The broomstick training and dragon quest were both fully booked so we were advised to book a slot for the state rooms. We did so, and they were beautiful but my 7 & 5 year olds aren’t really engaged by this sort of thing. They have a little game where they’ve hidden lions in each room, once they spotted the lions they immediately wanted to move on. I would’ve loved to spend a bit more time reading all of the available information but it was a quick in and out.
We came out, and got to be honest thought - is that it? Seemed expensive (£44 for a family ticket). The kids ran around outside a bit and we stumbled on the military museum which my Son in particular enjoyed being able to hold the guns. However again it was small and only took 10/15 minutes.
We wandered again and stumbled upon the cafe area and through an archway got to the children’s area. We spent another 60-90 mins here where the kids watched the jester who was very funny. Lots of fart jokes which is right up my 5 year old Sons street. The kids could dress up as knights and run around. They made a wand which they really enjoyed and as we were leaving the staff shouted they had room for 5/6 more people in the dragon quest so we went and did that.
The dragon quest itself is small, but children of my age enjoyed it. However I’m glad we just did it on spec as it was very brief so glad we had t scheduled our whole day around it.
On review it would’ve been better if the staff had directed us to this area on our arrival as we very nearly missed it and this was what made our day.
Reading through the leaflet they have lots of events on through the year, so we’ll go again. Possibly whilst visiting the gardens when it warms up.
We completely missed the children’s play ground - if there is one? Seems so reading other reviews. They didn’t get chance to do the archery or the broomstick training. On our way out the kids wanted to look at the fountains in the garden, but the staff wouldn’t let us enter the archway just to look which seemed a bit extreme, but hey ho.
All in all a good day, but improvements could be made.
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