A Toddlers Guide To: Adventure Island Southend (Red Band)


I get asked a lot of questions about Adventure Island on Instagram, mainly from Mums that aren't local and want to know if Adventure Island is worth a road trip and worth the time, money and effort of a visit for someone that doesn't live locally like us and can't just pop down the road for it. As an Annual Pass holder that visits weekly (and a past employee, this is where me and Aidan actually met!) I have put together a guide for Toddlers at Adventure Island. 

Adventure Island is a free entry Theme Park so you don't actually have to pay to enter (perfect for the grandparents or parents that don't want to ride but still want to come along for the day), you can either pay for rides using Ride Tickets that are £1.50 per ticket (Toddler rides vary from 1-2 tickets to ride) or you can buy a Wristband which covers you for unlimited rides the entire day. Wristbands are full price until 6pm and half price after 6pm if you just wanted to come a long for the evening. 

They run the wristbands on a colour system, Red Band is Bowies band which is the cheapest and for his age range, then theres Green band for slightly older kids and finally the Blue band for the bigger kids (its measured by height and not age)  Bowie is quite tall so we think he may be a Green Band by the end of a year! (eek). Bowie has a Red Band Annual pass which is £80 for a year of unlimited rides and soft play any day of the year but a Red Band wristband if you're just visiting for the day is £20 in the park or £15 if purchased in advance off the website here

As a Red Band Bowie gets one free adult riding with him completely free, so when we bring him down any of us can join him on a ride free of charge as many times as we like so for us as Annual pass holders its a free day out!

A lot of people assume that it wouldn't be worth the trip for a Toddler as they can't go on as many things, so these are the things they can go on and enjoy.


Adventureville

Adventureville is actually the only ride I don't have photos of as its a dark inside ride but I'll try and get a photo next trip. Its an indoor track that goes around a little village of Bears with lots of Animatronics, a bit like Disney's 'Its a Small World' but with Teddy Bears and not on Water. You go around the track twice, the first time normally and the second time with Disco Lights and Music (very random but hilarious). 





American Whip

The American Whip is Bowies absolute favorite, He cries with laughter every time it whips him around the corner and its such a classic. The Ride consists of moving slowly around a track then quickly whipping at a high speed around the corners and its hilarious. 


Arcades

There are two separate buildings dedicated to Arcades in Adventure Island as well as lots of external classic carnival type games throughout the park such as 'hook a duck'. The Arcades in Adventure Island are run slightly different to the regular Arcades down the seafront as there is no cash involved whatsoever and instead a 'Game Card' is used. A Game Card is a little plastic credit card style Card that can be reused again and again every time you visit and you load it with as much money as you want and can then use it on all of the Arcade Games, Carnival Games, Bowling and the little Arcade style rides which Bowie loves. All of your points are recorded on your card from each trip and you can save them up and spend them on gifts at the gift counter. Theres even a big Star Wars themed section. They also do deals such as getting a free £5 on your card when you top up £20. 






The Big Wheel 

Firstly lets appreciate this little throw back to Bowie last year! I miss his little man bun so much! But back to the Big Wheel, another classic that can't be missed and a favourite for us to all do together as a family instead of just one of us going with him. Plus you get the best views of the Sea! The Ride consists of all sitting together in an cage type thing and moving round just like the London Eye but out in the open with that fresh sea smell and beautiful views of the beach. 



The Carousel 

As well as all of the outside rides at Adventure Island, there is also 'Adventure Inside' which is located in the middle of the park and is host to a huge soft play, arcades, a milkshake bar, cafe and of course more rides. Unlike Adventure Island its open every single day, including all through the Winter and you can visit Adventure Inside exclusively for a much cheaper price without visiting Adventure Island's outside part.  The Carousel is one of two rides inside that Bowie can go on and is a classic, old fashioned Carousel with horses, a tea cup and a carriage. 




Choo Choo Train

This is one that I used to love when I was Bowies age so its very Vintage! Bowie loves the interaction with the Ride Host on this one, making the train noises and doing the actions. The ride consists of a cute little basic train ride around a small track.








The Crooked House

The Crooked house is definitely a lot modern and interesting since its revamp, it was low key scary and a bit weird when I was younger but now its a lot more enjoyable for kids and randomly Bowie loves it! He went in three times in a row last week. The Crooked House is just what it says on the tin, a crooked shaped house full of windows of funny little things to see, crooked walls and steep scary staircases! with buttons and interactive bits and bobs along the way and there are always tonnes of bubbles coming from the house which Bowie LOVES.



Dune Buggies 

Dune Buggies is one of the Adventure Inside Rides, as you can see here we made a visit after getting caught in the rain! They're loads of fun and consist of sitting in a car or a 'Buggie' and driving around whilst jumping up and down






Flying Jumbos

Dumbo's Pink Cousin! This ride is exactly like the classic Dumbo's ride at Disney however a little more up and down than round and round. Bowie loves flying through the air and seeing the views. The ride consists of sitting in a Pink Flying Elephant and flying around in a circle whilst moving up and down to different heights. 





Jumping Jolly Rodgers

One of Bowies favourite TV Shows is Swashbuckle and he loves pretending to be a Pirate so this ride  and the Pirate themed interaction with the Ride Hosts is always a hit with him. The ride consists of little pirate ships bouncing up and down as they follow a circular track along to Pirate music. 







Kiddi Koaster

Bowies first Rollercoaster! Watching Bowie on Kiddi Koaster and looking at his photos after is always the highlight of my trip! The Ride consists of a fast moving but toddler friendly Roller Coaster with amazing views over the Sea as the ride is positioned on the roof! 






The Helter Skelter Slide

Another classic ride that I used to love when I was a child! The Helter Skelter is your typical spiral slide around a tower and Bowie loves jumping on that mat and getting going, its another of his favourites. 



 Magic Monsters

Bowie is a big fan of Dinosaurs so loves hopping in one and having Dinosaur themed interaction with the Ride Host and getting to practice his biggest ROAR. The Ride consists in sitting in a 'Monster' (they're definitely Dinosaurs not Monsters) and sailing around a circular track whilst 'steering' (Bowie loves to steer)



Play Stack and Play Pod Soft Play 

Adventure Inside holds a huge 5 story Soft Play with Ball Pits, with open and closed slides and lots of other fun stuff. It also has a separated section for babies and young toddlers so that they have their own space away from the bigger kids. This is Bowies all time favourite place, he is more than happy to spend an entire day in the soft play alone and not even go on any of the rides! As mentioned before, Adventure Inside can be visited alone without riding any of the outside rides. A Play Stack and Play Pod day pass is just £7 which includes a hot drink and a slice of cake for the adults or a Play Stack, Play Pod and indoor Rides day pass is £14 which includes a free Childs drink, Ice Cream and Flake, 2 free arcade games and a free Childs meal at a local Fish and Chip shop. Finally you can purchase an Adventure Inside Annual Pass which is what Bowie had before we got him his Adventure Island Annual pass and this is £28 for unlimited access to Adventure Inside all year round and of course comes with the same 20% off benefits we get with our Annual Pass which covers all food, drink and souvenirs at Adventure Island and Sealife. 






Viking Boats 

Viking Boats is such a cute little ride for the bubas and even the family as you can fit quite a few of you in a boat! The ride consists on sitting in a viking boat and sailing through the water whilst clapping and singing along with the ride hosts. 




So thats all of the rides Bowie goes on right now as a Red Band! (I will return with a Green Band Guide when he goes up a band). Theres also a stage and at the Weekends and in the Holidays the Entertainment team come out and dance with the kids, Bowie LOVES jumping up on stage and dancing along to the Music with all the other kids. Theres of course also a Gift Shop, and lots of Food and Drink outlets and stalls as well as meet and greets with Adventure Island characters.

Do I think its worth a day trip here with a toddler? Absolutely. For a small wristband upgrade price of £3 you can also grab yourself entry to Sealife a short walk down the road which is an Aquarium with a small outside Zoo including Monkeys, Meerkats and Penguins! and there is also Crazy Golf and of course the Rock Pool and plenty of other things down the Seafront if you didn't want to spend the entire day at Adventure Island. 

Bowie asks to go to Adventure Island near enough every day and we go at least once a week and a lot more during the Holidays when its a bit more lively and open until 10pm! (don't forget half price wristbands after 6pm) Theres plenty to do and lots of great photo opportunities. 


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