Thorpe Park is a cool theme park just outside West London. The slogan is “An Island Like No Other”, and that’s certainly true! 7 huge rollercoasters and lots of other rides and attractions are all on this little island in the middle of an artificial lake, and it has the UK’s tallest log flume – Logger’s Leap. It’s aimed at older children and teenagers, and it has 5 different areas – Amity Cove, The Jungle, Canada Creek, Lost City, Swarm Island and Angry Birds Land.
The Park is owned by Merlin Entertainments (a company based in my hometown!), who also own nearby Legoland and Chessington World of Adventures. Because these great attractions are so close to Thorpe Park, it needed to be a bit different in order to appeal to a different audience. Legoland is for younger kids, and Chessington appeals to families. When the Thorpe Park land was sold in the 1930s, it was bought by a concrete company, who turned the majority of the land into a lake and let the island remain. They wanted to create an “educational” theme park, but clearly that didn’t work out!
As you enter, you cross a bridge. On your right, the new shark-shaped hotel “Thorpe Shark” (get the pun?) looms over the edge of the lake. You might also see some people doing watersports on the lake, because that’s something else you can do. You enter the Port Atlantis Dome, which is a two-storey building with a domed roof. This has got shops, restaurants and an arcade that you can play a combination of computerised and mechanical games in. But you’ll be too excited to do this right away – leave the building, and the park spreads out in front of you.
The little blue paddling pools for kids (and the fake sandy beach) mark the beginning of Amity Cove, the water-themed area of the park. Here is Tidal Wave, one of the thrill rides. You’ll get soaked if you ride this one – the splash stretches right around the main area of Amity Cove! Stealth is also located in this area, Thorpe Park’s flagship ride – it’s 7 seconds but it goes up and down vertically. Close by is Swarm island, a little area designed to look like it has been destroyed in a kind of Armageddon. Colossus is in the Lost City, and SAW – The Ride is nearby. Nemesis Inferno is just steps away. The good thing about Thorpe Park is that it’s quite small (yet perfectly formed), so your feet won’t get hurt too much! If you’re not a big rollercoaster person, don’t worry, smaller rides like dodgems and boat rides are available.
If your family have a car, the car park is huge. If not, then you can reach it by public transport – hooray! Take the train to Staines railway station (between London Waterloo and Reading), then get off and take the Thorpe Park Express from the entrance. It’s £3.70 for an adult return on this bus, and the service runs very regularly in the summer months. Bored and want to do something fun with all your friends? Look no further.
Image from: http://mappinglondon.co.uk/2014/theme-park-maps/