We have used the Parent and Toddler (under 5) ticket for £12 (valid during term time) to do the Zog and the quest for golden star at the Warwick Castle in the past, which is an absolute bargain, but today we used the national lottery days out to visit again to explore the new Zog Playland! That cost us 2£pp- you can never top that right!! The scheme is now closed but have an eye out for it in the future. It is so so worth it!!!
You still have to pay for 6£ for parking which is really annoying when one the entrance tickets are not cheap anyway but here we go. I will take that with a pinch of salt as we got discounted tickets anyway. Mind you, it is a good 20 minutes walk to the castle if you parked in the overflow car park (like us) and some parts of the paths from up there are bumpy for buggies.
Anyways, back to the review- as we have done this a few times now, I am combining my reviews into one and dividing it into separate sections for ease:
I will start with the newly opened Zog Playland which is based on “Zog and the Flying Doctors” sequel and is meant to be the first Zog-inspired play area in the world. The play areas is located just on your left as you enter from reception. You can do the play land and then start the Zog trail or visit it in between; it’s entirely up to you. You can go as many times as you want
The play area is not too big. Princess Pearl’s Tower is the main climbing frame, which you can access through the market stalls or climb up via the cargo net. There are a few props in the market stall with interesting names here (such as Zog’s farts) but that’s as exciting as it gets. You can walk along the platforms/ ramparts where there are a few more dragons dotted around (including one with smoke coming out of his nostrils), find a small bucket for water play or come down the red dragon’s spotty tongue as he roars (The dragon had reindeer horns on though and I am not sure why!). There is a Dragon Wing Zip Wire and a Zog slide in addition to some swings, snake rope swing and a small obstacle course.
Ay was gone for a bit in the Crawl Tunnel. I was surprised because the tunnel actually looked quite small, so I peeped in to find a small screen with Zog movie running on it and some children (including Ay) watching it in the tunnel..lol.. Then there is small sand pit arranged around the Lion’s cave. The lion roared once in a while but the kids couldn’t figure out what made him do it. There is an ambulance refilling station in here where water bottle costs a whooping 1.8£.
So how was it?? The concept is nicely executed, and will definitely keep a Zog super fan , Toddlers and younger children (upto 6-7 years old) happy but I wished they had added more for older children as it is pretty basic for that age group. It was also quite crowded, which is partly to be expected during peak holiday season but all the equipment crammed into a small space didn’t help either! The good thing is it is wheelchair accessible and also has step free access to the princess pearl’s castle/fort.
The trail has five stops around the castle grounds. Don’t forget to take your card on arrival, which needs to be stamped on completion of each one of the Zog’s activity at the dragon school. You dont have to, but it certainly makes Ay more excited, so we always take stamp cards if available.
Year 1 – Dragons Learn to Fly- This station is just by the entrance. You have to capture a photo with Zog as he learns to fly. With the castle in the background and Zog with his wings spread, it is definitely a nice photo opportunity
Year 2 – Dragons Learn to Roar- You have to jump on the foot pads to make dragon Rooooar!
Year 3 – Dragons Learn to Breathe Fire- You have to find your way through the maze (which is basically a horrible stories maze too and is quite interesting actually), then jump on the foot pads to squirt water to put the fire out on Zog’s wing. The Zog bit is easily visible as you enter the area, so you can skip the maze if you wanted too, BUT it has interesting stuff in there
(please see below), and there is little chance you will get lost in there, so I would recommend you give it a go (especially if you have older children)
Year 4 – Dragons Learn how to Capture a Princess- This part is by the river for which you have to turn around the castle. You have to complete the obstacle course to capture princess Pearl. There is no real princess Pearl, just a mannequin / scarecrow but Princess Pearl does make appearances around the castle on and off. The obstacle course is fairly basic though.
Year 5 – Dragons Learn to Fight- These sessions are at timed intervals throughout the day. When sir Gadabout made an appearance, a few kids (mine included) were ready to do a sword fight with him. He politely refused but did a little interactive session with the children which they loved. All kids were then rewarded with a gold star badge.
MY TOP TIP: Although they say you can use a stick for the session with sir Gaddabout, most children had swords (clue: there is a Zog merchandise stall just opposite the fight arena) and your kid will also probably want one. If you have one at home, then bring it with you, or get a cheaper one from Poundland/ range etc and save yourself some money- you can thank me later!
Finally, you have a meet and greet with Zog, who happily did a little dance and photos with everyone. There are sessions throughout the day, for which there were long queues. We must have waited about 20 minutes for it.
If your little one is a Zog fan, you may also wish to look at the Zog Trail at Forestry England.
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The maze is divided into different sections to unravel history in the world’s first Horrible Histories® adventure maze! You can take a booklet by the entrance to collect stamps on your way around. The maze isn’t big and will not take longer than 10- 15 minutes – depending on how much you stop and read all the facts on the posters in the maze. There are interactive elements such as Viking ship you can climb on, a trench you can get into, chimney, witches potion garden etc, making it fun.
The story behind the maze is that the rat has mixed up the time periods and is lost. You go through the terrifying Tudors (and follow their loathsome laws), frightful First World War, stormin’ Normans (learn about the weapons once used at Warwick Castle), measly Middle Ages ( try to avoid persecution), slimy Stuarts (Follow the fuse through the barrel maze to find the gunpowder) and the vicious Vikings (climb aboard the ship to discover the Viking loot) and eventually come out via an obstacle course (adults can come out in the normal way).
Once you get all your stamps you can pop to the gift shop on the way out to claim a badge reward.
Pushchairs are not permitted within the maze. The Horrible Histories Maze is wheelchair accessible however frail, non-ambulant and those with limited mobility should choose to avoid any routes with obstacles. Registered assistance dogs are permitted within this attraction.
You will be roaming around the castle, enjoying its grandeur and getting glimpses of life from that era, especially when you go inside the castle and walk through 17th-century state rooms. You can also climb up the towers and ramparts if you wanted to, not only to get the real sense of strength and defence in early times, but also to admire the breathtaking views of the complex. This is not for the faint hearted though. You are climbing up lots n lots of steps, some uneven to reach the medieval towers and ramparts, so only embark on this if you truly think you can make it and do not suffer from height phobia, claustrophobia or have certain medical conditions. You may not be able to simply turn back if you changed your mind mid way! Also, I usually find the descent back on spiral staircases quite challenging at times, so don’t say I didnt warn you. Here is the leaflet for more information on your self guided tour.
Many peacocks strut around freely in the peacock garden which are always fascinating to watch along with a gorgeous fountain at the centre. If you’re lucky you’ll see one spreading their feathers too. They are quite noisy!
Don’t forget to join Hobby on his quest to find birds for the castle in “The Falconer’s Quest – Birds of Prey Show”. It was actually pretty amazing and lasted about 25 minutes. I don’t remember the names of all the birds we saw but there were Eagle Owls, Harris Hawks, Bald Eagles, Peregrine Falcons, and Stellar’s Sea Eagles to name a few. In the finale, about 7-10 birds started flying around the area, which was absolutely breathtaking. It is worth it! There is a seated area for this show but much more people were sitting happily on the grass and having snacks etc. This is one place where I don’t think you should make your kids queue up for the “good seats” as the birds do fly around in most directions. I would just turn up 2-3 minutes before the start.
If walked down to the River Avon banks, you will find the Mills and engine station, just beside the main castle. It is a solid stone structure with a huge working waterwheel that has been beautifully restored. Inside the mill open viewing areas, glass and grills all ensure visitors get an excellent view of the machinery and the river rushing under your feet. The roar of the water is as dramatic as the machinery and together they create a tense atmosphere. Here is a bit more information on it. There were about 50 steps climb up from here, so if you want to avoid it, then it is better you re-trace your steps and walk around the castle to exit but that walk itself is quite long, so see what suits you best!
The resident bowman enthralls audience with his skill and humorous by the castle walls.
You can also book the Dungeons, the princess tower or Archery at an extra cost
Watch our quest in our IG reel. HERE
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🗺 Address: Warwick Castle, CV34 6QU
🎟 Entrance fee applies (please see website for updated prices HERE)
🚘 6£ Paid parking on top of the tickets (which makes me cry )
📅 Special events throughout the season (please see website HERE for what’s on)
🚻 Toilets and baby facilities
🍕 Refreshments available in the cafe, a restaurant and outdoor stalls. See details HERE
🧺 Picnic allowed- picnic benches dotted around
🦽 Parts Buggy accessible (Information HERE)
🐕 Dogs allowed in some parts
What else is in the area: