This is a guest post about Paradise Park in East Sussex from Jennifer of Jennifer’s Little World – mum to two, shameless explorer, and Hama bead genius.
We like to think that we’ve visited most of our local attractions, but we recently discovered Paradise Park near Newhaven – new to us and definitely a hidden gem. Paradise Park really is a unique attraction. It’s difficult to describe in a few words as there is so much to do, so here are the things that we enjoyed the most.
You start your visit with a tour of the Planet Earth Museum. The museum has some great displays, with fossils, minerals and crystals and a comprehensive history of the planet. The best exhibits for children are an array of life size dinosaur models which have a control panel with buttons to make them come to life, and move and roar at you. There are also lots of local finds, including replicas of the Iguanadon fossil discovered in the Sussex Weald. It’s a really fascinating museum and very well laid out.
Then you enter the Plant Houses, two large greenhouses filled with plants from America, Africa, Europe and Australia. There is also an indoor Oriental garden with enormous and colourful Koi carp. Outside are The Paradise Gardens, and they really are lovely. There are several lakes filled with large fish that you can purchase food to feed, and the children really enjoyed this. As you walk through the gardens you follow the Sussex History Trail. The trail is brought to life with many handcrafted models of Sussex landmarks, plenty of which we recognised from our days out in the area. Some of them even move. We had a great time exploring here.
There is a large outdoor playground in the gardens, with curving slides and the Triassic Treetops Adventure Play with netted walkways and tunnels. The children enjoyed digging for plastic dinosaur bones in the huge undercover sand pit, and there is also a big indoor soft play area with separate areas for younger toddlers and older children. We paid £1 for the children to have a go at mini golf which they loved and they were able to spend as long as they liked there. There is a miniature train too, although we saved it until last and then found that the driver was on his lunch break as we were leaving so we had to give it a miss!
There is quite a dinosaur theme going on around the whole attraction. There were inflatable dinosaurs to spot all the way around, and in the outdoor gardens there is a fantastic Dinosaur Safari with huge, colourful and roaring dinosaur models to admire as you walk through it.
We spent a lovely long morning at Paradise Park, and if we lived closer we’d definitely consider an annual pass.
For more information please visit their website at http://www.paradisepark.co.uk/
We visited using Tesco Clubcard vouchers. Individual admission (3-60 years) is £9.99, Family (2 adults and 2 children) is £29.99. You can also buy an annual pass, £69.99 for a family ticket. Additional charges for the mini golf (£1) and the train rides (£1).