You’ve seen Bear Grylls on TV taking part in gruelling adventures, now at this unique attraction in Birmingham you have the chance to see if you have what it takes to become the next Bear Grylls. So when Bear Grylls Adventure invited my family to try out some of their activities we couldn’t wait to see what it had to offer.
Read our honest review on Bear Grylls Adventure and what it’s like for families.
One of the activities that we were most looking forward to during our weekend in Birmingham was our visit to Bear Grylls Adventure. As soon as we arrived at this huge purpose-built attraction, located next to the National Exhibition Centre, the sight of the abandoned jeep and huge 65ft high ropes course towering over us as we made our way to the entrance, created a real sense of excitement and buzz.
We couldn’t wait to get inside! With atmospheric music playing, it had that theme park feel, there was even a giant chinook helicopter jutting out over the entrance which guests can zip line out of, but more on that later.
First impressions of the interior were even more impressive, it felt as though we were in the middle of a royal marines training camp, with the sound of military-inspired music to motivate you along with positive slogans painted on the walls to spur you on like ‘Never Give Up!’. The look of excitement on the girls faces was priceless, they couldn’t wait to get started.
What makes this attraction so unique are the amount of cool experiences to try out here, it’s a dream attraction for adrenaline seeking tweens and teens. There are 11 things you can experience here from high ropes and shooting to climbing and cage snorkelling. If you really want to push yourself to the limits you can also try diving with sharks or experience skydiving in the Ifly simulator.
For our visit to Bear Grylls Adventure we pre-booked axe throwing, an escape room and archery plus we also had access to the royal marines inspired assault course which comes included with all activities.
I would recommend booking activities online in advance as they often sell out, especially on busier periods such as school holidays and weekends plus it’s also £5 per activity cheaper when you book online. We visited on a Sunday morning just after opening and it was really quiet but when we left at midday it was much busier – so if you want the activities to yourself, I’d recommend booking your activities early in the day.
On arrival after signing waivers and paperwork we were each given a wrist band which shows the activities you’ve paid for and an electronic tag to store any personal belongings in the secure lockers.
First up was the activity I was most looking forward to, axe throwing. We were met by our instructor who led us into the safety demonstration room where they explained the dos and don’ts of axe throwing.
The axe throwing area can be best described as a mix between a bowling lane and darts board, where we each had an individual lane ready for us to unleash our axe throwing capabilities. If you didn’t want to participate there was also a viewing area for those just wanting to spectate.
Our instructor showed us a few example throws and some tips on technique around where to hold the axe, our stance and where to aim and more importantly how to safely remove the axe from the target on the corkboard. Finally it was our turn, and for the next 25 minutes we all got gradually better as we switched between a small and full size axe and competed with each other in a range of fun games, with the winner running a celebratory bell after each round.
I didn’t think I would be a natural axe thrower but I’ll be honest, I was really surprised at just how good I became after some coaching, I was regularly hitting the bullseye and it was great fun and really therapeutic.
After our fun start to our adventures at Bear Grylls, whilst we waited for our next booked activity the escape room, the girls challenged each other on the tough royal marines assault course.
Holly in particular loved this and spent the next 20 minutes trying to beat her previous time – she would literally have given Bear himself a run for his money on this course, she was so quick over the obstacles. This involved climbing up and over walls, crawling under cargo nets and swinging from monkey nets.
Then we moved onto our next activity, the escape rooms. It’s something that we have never tried as a family so we really didn’t know what to expect but we really enjoyed it. This is a totally different experience to the more activity-based experiences at Bear Grylls, this was all about finding clues, puzzle solving and teamwork.
We had two different rooms to escape from and had 60 minutes to escape the Victorian style mystery of Lord Grizzle with an escape slide to the 2nd room. The first room was the most complicated and with time running out we had to ask the staff for some help as we were struggling to escape but the second room which we were told was more complicated we managed to complete with time to spare – there is a real sense of achievement when the door opens and you escape.
Our last pre-booked activity was another competitive challenge, archery. Much like the axe throwing, we had a safety briefing and instruction before we went onto one of the two arenas with an instructor to each group.
This was the activity that the girls were most looking forward to and inspired by Katniss Everdeen (The Hunger Games) they were soon into hitting the target with relative ease, they loved our 30 minute session here as with the numbered targets and games we tried to outscore each other. I wish the sessions were longer as they are over quite quicky but I guess that’s a sign that we were really enjoying the activity.
Before we left, the girls couldn’t resist the zip line, it’s not everyday that you get a chance to zip line from the back of a chinook helicopter and out of the front of the building and luckily there were still spaces available and I thought it was reasonably prices at £7 each. Following a safety briefing the girls loved this final experience and it was the perfect way for us to end a really fun morning here at Bear Grylls Adventure.
We had a great morning here at Bear Grylls Adventure and its an attraction I would highly recommend for a unique fun filled family activity. We are already planning our return visit to try the activities that we didn’t have a chance to experience this time.
For more information and to buy tickets, visit www.https://www.beargryllsadventure.com/birmingham. Prices for the escape room start from £24, archery and axe throwing from £20 if booked in advance. Other activities include iFly, shooting, climbing, high ropes and cage snorkelling.