Drayton Manor Theme Park

Drayton Manor is situated near Tamworth, just a short drive from Stafford and there is easy access to the park from the M6 toll motorway. You will find ample parking on site and the entrance fees are reasonable by British standards reflecting the fact that this is not one of the nation’s premier theme parks. There is, however, plenty to keep the family entertained for a day with attractions to suit both adrenaline junkies and those seeking a more serene experience!

The Park

Drayton Manor features both rides and animal exhibits together with the recently added Thomas Land themed around Thomas the Tank Engine. The wildlife exhibits are attractively landscaped and pretty well done but the areas of the park housing the rides are not that appealing and there is very little theming to enjoy. Having said that Thomas Land is well thought out, sympathetically landscaped and includes some great attractions for small children although little of interest to adults.

Highlights

For me the animals are the real show stoppers at Drayton Manor. With over 100 species on a 15 acre site there is plenty to enjoy here if the rides get too much. The park is relatively compact making it easy to divide and conquer if other members of your party wish to stay with the thrills. Talking of thrills there are several roller coasters at Drayton but it has to be said that they are not the greatest rides in the world! Shockwave is a stand up coaster which is frankly extremely uncomfortable and G Force doesn’t live up to its name and has restraints that slowly stop you from Breathing. On the bright side Apocalypse is a very good drop tower with the novelty of being able to choose to sit or stand for the drop. Ben 10 is a very good coaster for youngsters and is a pretty decent ride given its low height restriction.

The best ride on offer is probably Stormforce 10, a rather crafty water ride which sends you down the first drop backwards. This is a great attraction for the whole family with a few thrills and every chance of getting wet! There are several other rides but they are the generic sort that you see everywhere and so will yield few surprises.

Food and Shopping

It has to be said the that the food at British theme parks is generally terrible but Drayton Manor do better than most with a decent selection and some choices which are not junk food. I can particularly recommend the pie shop which serves some traditional English fayre which is really rather yummy. The merchandise in the shops is pretty decent too with plenty of souvenirs, toys and gifts for kids and tweens to enjoy.

A good Day Out

Drayton Manor is far from being the best park on offer in the UK and with Alton Towers just down the road it is easy to overlook it but it does make for a good day out. There isn’t much to excite the serious thrill seeker but the kids will love it and it is good value for money.