This is our final chapter on the Merlin attractions around the UK, however there’s still lots to cover, including some of my all-time favourites! While the first article featured those for real thrill-seekers, and the second was more about relaxing and taking in a nice view, these attractions find themselves somewhere in between. They’re not about fast, flashy rides, but more about immersing yourself in the experience and the world you’ve entered for the day. These might be my favourite type of attraction discussed so far, because they enable you to simply forget about the outside world and be transported into a place of imagination and creativity.
To begin, The Dungeons, found in London, as well as various locations across the UK, are a great way to get a glimpse of the past. They take you on a journey through the history of the city, making them educational and insightful, but don’t be fooled into thinking it will be like just another museum or lesson at school, they’ll be laughs, scares and amazing special effects to capture the essence of the time periods and bring the story to life. These attractions are a great way to learn and find out about history in a fun and exciting way! The dungeons are split into various areas, each based on famous parts of history. At the London Dungeons you’ll find the stories of Guy Fawkes, Jack the Ripper and the infamous Plague.
Nearby, also in London, is found the spectacle that is Madame Tussauds. These days quite well-known, originally this was quite a small waxwork collection made by Madame Tussauds herself. Since then, it has grown and grown, so that visitors today are amazed by several large rooms of waxwork people. Amongst the models, you’ll find film stars, musicians, sports stars, royals, politicians and even Albert Einstein! You’ll also get the chance to see some of your favourite fictional characters brought to life, such as those of Marvel films and Star Wars. At the moment, they are also showing the Marvel Super Heroes 4D film, in the old planetarium, which immerses you completely with is large dome screen.
Warwick Castle is the next adventure on our list. Once again, this is both educational and fun. In the castle, you’ll see grand rooms and beautiful gardens and there are a variety of activities to take part in as you walk around. For those who are fans of the Horrible Histories TV show and books, they have a stage show that take place at the castle. You can also watch a birds of prey show, jousting and their working Trebuchet (like a large catapult), which would have been used during medieval wars.
Finally, my favourite place on this list, visiting Legoland is a fun-filled occasion. The park is wonderfully designed so that even when I go now I feel like a little kid again. There are so many good memories I have of coming here with my family. Though the rides are much smaller than at the other Merlin theme parks, the effort put into giving the park character certainly makes up for it. There’s just so much LEGO everywhere, and since it was my favourite toy growing up, I love it! Even if you’re an older kid who’s not so into the rides any more, you’ll enjoy the experience of seeing Miniland, the miniature world they’ve created in LEGO, and the shop at the end has an amazing selection of LEGO sets and souvenirs. Another favourite part of mine is the stunt show that takes place around the lighthouse several times a day.
With all these great attractions, there’s really not the space here to describe them in the detail they deserve, but I recommend taking a trip with family or friends to one of their attractions, when you have the chance to experience the fun for yourself. What’s more, they are scattered throughout the country, so wherever you live, there should be something they offer that you can enjoy. For more information, visit: http://www.merlinannualpass.co.uk/default.aspx. This is the website for the annual pass that the company offers, but it also features general details about all of their attractions and how you can get involved.
Image from: http://www.legoland.co.uk/Global/1.%20Website/Park%20Photos/2013/Dragon-Rides--04.png