Last week it was my birthday and I got to celebrate it at the Winter Funland VIP charity night, which was pretty flipping special and as I know that Christmas can be really expensive and the choice available for festive activities is massive I wanted to give you a run down of exactly what is going on at Funland so you can see just what you get for your money.
Based in Event city means that firstly car parking is free and as it is next to the Trafford center you could easily combine this with a festive shopping spree too. It also means that everything (apart from two additional rides) is inside and undercover so need to worry about the rain spoiling your festive celebrations.
Funland is quiet aptly named in my opinion because it literally is full of things that are fun, entertaining, and exciting for people of all ages. We managed to stay for 4 hours and we still hadn’t done everything and could easily go back and spend another 4 fun filled hours there without hesitation.
What’s included in your price?
Fun fair rides
There are loads and loads of fun fair rides surrounding the perimeter of Funland, with extra ones in the middle, you literally can not turn around without seeing a ride. They range from small children’s rides (imagine sit in cars and carousels) to mini roller coasters and fun houses, to the more scary helter skelters and then rides that go so fast or so high they require a height restriction. What ever the age of your child there will be multiple rides they can enjoy, either alone or with an adult. Our favourites included the bucking bronco ride, a (faster than we expected) ski jump ride and as always the kids loved the fun house too.
You can go on these rides as many times as you want and the best bit is there should, in theory, never be massive queues because there are limited number of tickets sold to each Funland slot, so you will have ample time to go on every ride you want at least once.
Andy and the odd socks
To the left and at the back after entering Funland you will find a 100 seater theater where there are regular showings of Andy and the odd socks. These showings are aimed at smaller children and are relaxed so don’t worry if your little one hasn’t yet mastered the art of sitting still, they are free to watch or dance in the isles if they prefer and if you need to leave for any reason, again don’t worry. With so many seats available there is no need to book just check the times of the shows when you arrive and head over before it starts.
If you head straight to the back of Funland Manchester you will find a pretty impressive ice rink where you can hire skates for no extra cost and skate for as long as you want. What I also thought was fab about this was that there are plenty of penguin supports for less confident skaters and seal seats for the younger or less able children to still be able to experience the ice. There are also a few pro skaters on the ice at all times ready to lend a hand should you need it. The ice skating was busier earlier on although it never got too crowded but it did quieten down as the session went on and as my boys loved this so much we did end up going on twice. I would definitely recommend you give it a whirl even if you have never skated before. There was something magical and Christmassy about being on the ice.
We hadn’t realised a circus show would be at Funland Manchester and were delighted when we found it as we are big fans of the circus. The showings are hourly and last 30 minutes and they really do cram lots of amazing acts and entertainment in. My boys were transfixed the whole time.
Of course no Christmas activity would be complete without a trip to see Santa in his grotto and like most things this is included in your ticket. This was the only activity in the whole of Funland that was busy and had a queue, although it did seem to be moving quickly. We didn’t get to see Santa this year as the boys had seen him the week before and at 6 and 8 they were too interested in the rides and the ice skating, so I can’t say whether it was good or not but from the outside it sure looked like a lot of effort had gone in to his grotto and if it is up to the standards of everything else I am sure it will be magical.
There are two reindeer at Funland Manchester in a pen in front of the ice rink. They had two handlers with them when we went to say hello and it is lovely for the children to see them so close up. If it is not to crowded at the time and the reindeer are happy, you can also give them a little stroke too but always make sure your child asks first, just in case they are being grumpy (the reindeer, not your child!).
As with all my reviews I make sure that you get a complete picture of the event or product including any negatives or added extras and with Funland Manchester I couldn’t find any negatives, however it is important that you are aware that although you can go and not spend a single penny extra, there are lots of enticing extras that your children may ask for. These potential extras include fairground type games like a hook a duck, people selling light up flashing paraphernalia, stalls selling potential gifts and memorabilia and lots of food, drink and sweets stalls. It is also worth noting that some of these only accept cash so if you are planning on eating at the event you might want to take some money with you. Personally we can recommend the noodles and the chocolate covered waffles which were delicious and reasonably priced for an event such as this.
You can buy a family ticket for £85 and £3.50 booking fee.
Funland Manchester will be open everyday except Christmas day until 31st December.
(we were given complimentary tickets in exchange for a review but all opinions are my own).