Tayto Park, Kilbrew, Ashbourne, Co. Meath
Last week Patrick and I were invited to experience Tayto Park. From the moment we confirmed our place, all that was on our mind was the Cú Chullainn Coaster … well to be completely honest the fact that our trip would take place on a Friday the 13th was also on my mind.
… but with my eerie thoughts aside, the minute we stepped through the Tayto Park entrance we made a beeline for ‘Ireland’s First rollercoaster and Europe’s largest wooden rollercoaster with an inversion‘.
Thinking ourselves as brave as Cú Chullainn himself, we sat in the very first seats of the ride and braced ourselves for what was to come.
The highs, the lows, the speed, the slows … it was exhilarating and we were definitely not disappointed.
When the assistant that served Patrick his 99 ice-cream and me my coffee sometime later gave us a tip that the best seats on the Cú Chullain Coaster are actually the last seats, because they feel like they flip a little higher than the first, we were tempted to get back on to test her theory.
Proud to be working in Tayto Park since it opened nearly six years ago, we joked that she was part of the furniture there …
… but walking away from her with coffee and ice-cream in hand we were both dumbfounded that as theme park thrill seekers, this was our first visit to the place even though it’s only about 30 minutes from Dublin.
… But aside from the Cú Chullainn Coaster which only made its grand appearance in 2015, and grand it is, it’s a spectacular work of engineering and craftmanship, there is so much more on offer in Tayto Park.
Yes it has some gravity defying theme park rides in the Eagle Sky Adventure Zone …
… it took me an hour to get over The Rotator …
… but I still had fun …
*video’s uploaded from The Life of Stuff on Snapchat ‘thelifeofstuff’.
… BUT Tayto Park also has a zoo, playgrounds, restaurants, a cinema and a steam train (Eagle’s Nest Zone), just to name a handful.
Experiencing Tayto Park as adults was fun but as parents we were interested to find out if it’d be a destination to bring our own toddler … so step up Edwina and her inquisitive ways … and one way to help you decide if it is suitable for the little ones in your life is to ask a fellow parent for their opinion …
… I was lucky enough to put the question to a very friendly mother who was there with her partner, and her five-year old and 18 month old daughters.
She loved the place for her children, so much so bought a yearly membership, and found the size of the park, the zoo, picnic areas and playgrounds the perfect places for her little ones to enjoy … so there you have it … It’s a destination suitable for all ages, from toddlers to teenagers, juniors to seniors and all those in between.
Pricing for Tayto Park works in two ways. You can pay the entrance fee and pay per attraction (there are lots free too) or you can pay the entrance fee and pay for a wristband that allows for unlimited access to all the ‘paid for’ attractions.
My tip is to go online to the Tayto Park website and make up your mind by deciding what tickles your fancy, or what is available to those who will be with you. There’s a height restriction on many of the theme park rides so make sure you adjust the height when researching the suitability of theme rides per person. By doing this in advance, not only will you be able to work out if a wristband or paying separately would work better for you, but you will also get a feel for what Tayto Park offers … so you shouldn’t miss out on any fun – like the appearance of Mr Tayto himself!
Another bit of advice is to give yourself enough time at the park. When we were there, there were no queues but I’m sure it gets busy on sunny ‘no school’ days. If you are making a day out of it, why not pack a picnic for brunch, visit one of the restaurants on site for lunch or just nibble on some sweet treats … which by the way come in their own Tayto bag.
Of course Patrick nor I could come home to our little son without a memento of our visit and the Lodge Gift Shop had what we were looking for and more … if you’re a Tayto Lover, you’ll love it!
Oh and don’t forget to collect your bag of Tayto crisps at the Crisp Collection Hut when exiting the park … sure you couldn’t visit Tayto Park without a bag of Tayto could you?
For more information on Tayto Park visit their website here.
When we visited Tayto Park we stayed only minutes away at the Four Star luxury Dunboyne Castle Hotel – you can read my review here.