Drayton Manor has it all really. It looks and acts more like a theme park than Alton Towers, and it’s not nearly as large as that place either, so it feels more manageable. It has an old world design more in keeping with what you would recognise as a funfair, and that is a good thing.
It also has a zoo. All right, it’s not a great zoo, but it’s a very nice addition to the base product. A leisurely stroll through the enclosures is a worthwhile experience and, in a way, was the best part of my day. But then again, a lot of my enjoyment was marred by inefficient queues and too many kids.
After missing the tiger at Chester Zoo we managed to catch them at Drayton Manor, which was nice. We also saw ostriches, emus, and tucked away in the shade, a Red Kangaroo.
Stormforce 10 is… a water ride. Was it good? Well, most other people seemed to enjoy it, but having made the mistake of trying to tell The Girlfriend© that she won’t get very wet, and then not telling her that there was no safety harness, my experience was a little skewed. And then when she discovered that the ride included a drop backwards… well, suffice to say that’s quite possibly the last water ride she ever gets on.
Drayton Manor includes Thomas Land – a fairly deep area dedicated to all things Thomas the Tank Engine. I can see the little ones having a great time there, as did I for a little while.
All in all, it’s a park that has potential but lacks in the execution. The 4D Ice Age short was fun, as was the Buffalo Rollercoaster, but organisation let’s it down. At times it feels like the whole place is just a free-for-all.