Paulton’s Park is one of our favourite theme parks, but don’t just take our word for it. Trip Advisor recently voted it as the UK’s number one theme park.
Located in the village of Ower, near Romsey at the edge of the New Forest, Hampshire, England, the theme park has over 70 rides and attractions set amongst 140 acres of beautiful gardens.
Although infamous as being the home of Peppa Pig World, which is a must visit for families with younger children (you can read our review here) – there’s now a lot more to Paulton’s Park than just Peppa Pig.
Since our last visit, Paulton’s Park has introduced a brand new area called Lost Kingdom, a dinosaur themed area of the park and the girls we so excited to see what was on offer.
The Lost Kingdom is set over four acres, with excellent theming, with life-like animatronic dinosaurs. We were amazed as we walked through the main gate, it literally felt like you had been transported back 150 million years to Jurassic times.
There are also some brilliant new Jurassic themed rides here, which ranged from thrill seeking coasters to those more suited for younger children.
We were all so excited to see this new addition to the park, and in particular Chloe, who having watched the two new coasters on YouTube was desperate to try them out.
Our first experience of the Lost Kingdom was the Flight of the Pterosaur, a 395m suspended dinosaur roller-coaster with speeds up to 55km/h. Although both of the girls were tall enough to ride at over 1m tall, it was only Chloe, my 8 year old daughter who wanted to try it out. This was her favourite ride as you quickly swoop high and low around the prehistoric landscape, which had her screaming in delight!
Next up was the other thrill seeking ride Velociraptor (which is very similar to the Ben 10 ride at Drayton Manor). This coaster moves you forwards and backwards with drops and bends of up to 40 mph and was brilliant fun, especially at the back of the coaster!
There is a slower coaster ride which both my daughters and I loved, called Dino Chase (previously The Flying Frog). It was a lovely ride for my six year old to experience, as the likes of the Flight of the Pterosaur and Velociraptor were a little too scary.
Boulder Dash was a great swirling ride and brilliant fun, which had us moving and spinning in circles in our dinosaur egg or boulder. It reminded us of the Disney cars ride at Disney Studios in Paris.
The Dinosaurs Tour Co is a great family adventure in a 4×4 jeep, embarking on a dinosaur safari, meeting lots of animatronic dinosaurs on your journey. Watch out for the dinosaur in the cave who might surprise you with some water!
Another calmer ride suitable for younger children is Temple Heights, which lifts you up to the sky to give you a great view of the park.
For dinosaur lovers there is a great play park with sandpit and also a gift shop to purchase your very own toy dinosaur.
As Paulton’s Park is so much fun and children tend to run everywhere with excitement, there are bound to be falls and luckily there is a first aid centre next to the 4D cinema near the entrance. Holly fell and we took her here for a magic wet paper towel, germoline and pink Peppa Pig plaster.
Out with the headline areas of the Lost Kingdom and Peppa Pig World, Paulton’s Park offers much more for families. At Critter Creek, you will find a great themed area full of strange creatures and plants that you have never seen before.
The Cat-O-Pillar is a brilliant family coaster and Chloe loved this ride so much she went on 5 times in a row.
For the little ones there is Professor Blasts Expedition Express, a small gentle train ride. Holly loved this ride as you explore and point out wacky inventions as you travel around the track.
Once more the theming in Critter Creek is of the highest standard, especially at Beastie Burrow – an emporium full of bugs, fish and lizards. It’s great fun for little nature detectives.
As well as these fantastic themed lands, Paulton’s Park has some iconic fairground rides – my favourite being the beautiful Victorian Double Decker Carousel, set in a beautiful period themed garden. The girls in particular really enjoy this ride each time we visit Paulton’s Park.
Other family rides and attractions at Paulton’s Park included a 4D cinema, tea cup ride, seal falls and a really fun swinging boat ride called Kontiki. The Viking boats, Holly thought was so much fun as you can see in the photo below.
Along with a wide range of rides, the park also features a collection of around 80 species of birds and animals. The penguins and penguin feeding is set next to Peppa Pig World, also there are many other animals and birds to see such as Meerkat Manor, Beastie Burrow, Birds of Prey, Hornbills, Tropical Birds, Flamingos, Pelicans, African Avery and the Giant Tortoise.
There are many gardens within the theme park which are so picturesque and very well looked after, especially the beautiful formal gardens as you enter the park.
There are many places to eat at Paulton’s Park from quick service counters (serving great local Marshfield Farm ice cream) to restaurants such as the Wild Forest Family Restaurant. This is where we finally managed to part the girls away from the rides, and our paninis were delicious. If you plan on taking a picnic there are plenty of picnic benches dotted around the park.
During the warmer weather, a must visit for families is Water Kingdom – a large water park area featuring water jets, giant tipping buckets, fountains and super soakers for the children to enjoy and explore. The girls loved this when we last visited during the summer months, but during this visit the weather was too cold. There is also a great play park next to the Water Kingdom that the girls enjoyed just as much as the rides.
By the end of the day Chloe’s adrenaline was at maximum level from riding the scariest rides in the park such as the Cobra, the Edge, Kontiki, The Sky Swinger, Jumping Bean, Pirate Ship, Wave Runner and Dragon Roundabout. Even Holly had braved most of the rides.
The park is signposted well from the M3 motorway and is easy to find. We arrived just before the park opened at 10am to beat most of the queues. It’s nice that Paulton’s Park still don’t charge for car parking, which was organised and well planned out.
Pricing and Accommodation
I would recommend looking at booking a package on the official Paulton’ Breaks website as it works out excellent value for money with 2 days park entry and the hotels are within 20 minutes travel time of Paultons Park.
Booking tickets in advance is the cheaper option if you do not want to book a hotel break. A family of 4 advanced rate ticket for one day is £105, on the gate is £123. A two day advanced rate ticket is £196 or £226 on the gate. Children less than 1 metre tall get into Paulton’s Park for free.
We stayed at the Hilton Ageas Bowl the night before our visit and the Macdonald Botley Park after our day at Peppa Pig World. Both of these hotels are partner hotels for Paulton’s Park and are highly recommended. Alternatively if you book in advance or stay on a Sunday night you can get a reduced rate especially when Premier Inn run their frequent sales events.
We had such a wonderful time at Paulton’s Park and the new Lost Kingdom is amazing, what Paulton’s have managed to do brilliantly with this expansion is make the already successful park appeal to families with older children.
We managed to cover nearly every ride in the park and the children were so pleased that they could experience such a variety of rides, which is why Paulton’s Park is such a special theme park.
With so much to see and do you could easily fill two days at Paulton’s Park, it really is an excellent place for families to visit as there is something for all ages.
We were guests of Paulton’s Park for the purpose of the review.