Thursday, 21 March 2013

Trago Mills (Newton Abbot) - Review

'Trago Mills is more than just about shopping - it also offers a great family day out in Cornwall or Devon. Since we were founded (nearly 50 years ago!), we’ve been offering thousands of customers every year one of the greatest ranges of discount goods anywhere in the UK.'

There are three Trago Mills sites in and around Devon and Cornwall and they are fantastic for cheap days out with little ones and also for bargain shopping.
We personally go to the one near Newton Abbot as it is the closest to us.

 'Just off the A38 and set within 110 acres of beautiful South Devon countryside, our impressive Newton Abbot store offers the same discounted shopping experience as our stores in Cornwall plus much more for your family to enjoy.  In fact many of our customers describe us as 'the most family-friendly shopping site in the UK'!'

Trago is FREE to park and FREE to get in which is great. We like free.

There are loads of different things to do and you could easily spend an entire day here.

For starters you could wander around their massive store that has everything from clothes to kitchens. All at really good prices. 
After this you can wander through to their new (huge) garden park, which also has a pet section with rabbits, guinea pigs, birds and hamsters. My two love watching them jumping around in their cages. 
In December they also have a fantastic (free) elves workshop in the garden park.

If you aren't really a gardener type then head outside to the independent shops that sell things like jewellery, dolls houses and wooden toys. 
While your out there why not grab some lunch in the food court, there's a great selection of places to get some food. We always grab a pasty.

If you can't find anything in the food court that takes your fancy then head over to the Staple Hill Servery restaurant. When we went there for lunch the kids meals were only £1.75 including a free drink. Great value!

 When you are all filled up and the kids are raring to go again why not visit the Family Fun Park. It works on a pay as you go basis so you can spend as much or as little as you want. There is also the option to purchase day passes which works out cheaper if you intend to go on lots of rides. 

 'We’ve got Eagle Go Karts, Super Skate Zone, Bumper Boats, Jungle Puttin’, Trampolines, a Bouncy Castle and much more.'

We generally do pay as you go because my two are still to young to go on a lot of the rides. They do enjoy the free park though...

With the castle with slides being a firm favourite...

They also love the fun house which costs two tokens per child (each token is 50p)...

When you've had your fill of whizzing, bouncing, climbing and racing head over to the Theden Animal Park (also free)

 'Our Theden Animal Park has ponies, pigs, plus other furry and feathered friends for the kids to meet.'

This is my daughters favourite part of Trago, she's a bit of an animal lover, well she was until she got chased by the goose, she didn't like that much!

Trago also has an massive indoor model railway (my sons favourite part) which featured on Blue Peter all those years ago.  I believe that under 4's are free and everyone else pays £1 each for entry.

The railway is also right next to the penny arcade which has some fantastic old fashioned games and machines (check out my Silent Sunday)

So there you have it a fun day out for all. Obviously I haven't covered everything that Trago has to offer so you'll just have to go and check it out for yourselves! 

For more information visit the Trago website


**All sections in blue are taken straight from Trago Mills website and are not my own words**

**I haven't been paid or offered anything to write this review, we just generally love it here*

Saturday, 16 March 2013

Ladies Night Event - Bovey Tracey

Image found on Pinterest, original source unknown

LADIES NIGHT on Saturday the 23rd of March at The Dolphin Hotel in Bovey Tracey at 7.30pm.
It's £5 a ticket which includes a yummy desert! There will be a variety of stalls which will include Jamie at home, Body shop, my stall Caro Boutique, Arts & Crafts, Clothes Stall, Plus more, & a Raffle which will include the chance to win a lovely new pair of GHD'S.

If you would like to book tickets then you can contact me via email or leave a comment below this post. It should be a really fun night and I hope to see you all there.

Monday, 11 March 2013

Dartmoor Zoo **Money Off Deal**

I have just come across a fantastic deal for money off to Dartmoor Zoo and thought I'd share it with you. 
We have never been before so I've brought us some tickets, it cost me just £9.00 for the four of us to go. 
Really looking forward to it. Now I just have to buy the film 'We brought a Zoo' before we go. (The film was based on this zoo).

The deal is through Groupon, check it out here

Thursday, 7 March 2013

The House of Marbles - Review

 The House of Marbles in Bovey Tracey has always been one of our favourite places to visit and as a bonus it's FREE to get in. 
We haven't been for a while and I had heard that they have since had a new park put up in their games garden so we thought we go and check it out.

 There are lots of interesting things to see at the House of Marbles including their fascinating mechanical marble runs...

My son loves these and I'm pretty sure he would just spend hours watching them go around if left in there.

There's also the games museum with lots of old fashioned games to look at...

You can then wander through to the glass museum and watch them making the glass from the viewing balcony. Sorry no pics of in there, didn't trust my two in their with all that beautiful glass!

If you get hungry while you're there you can stop and have some lunch in the Old Pottery Restaurant, where they also do a fantastic breakfast. You can view some sample menus here.

And then there's the games garden complete with a brand new park...

 My two were very impressed with this and my son was particularly happy with the new outdoor marble run...

 Also don't forget to browse round the shop while your there. They have a great range of toys and unusual gifts. I could spend way to much money in there! 
If you can't make it to the House of Marbles then they also have an online store which you can check out here

The House of Marbles is open Monday to Saturday 9am - 5pm and Sundays 10am - 5pm. 

For more info then check out there website...

'We have been manufacturing our unusual range of traditional games, puzzles, toys, marbles and glassware for many years. Our aim is to make them to the highest standards and to offer high quality service to all our customers.

Visitors are most welcome to wander around the old pottery buildings with their listed kilns, enjoy our museums of glass, games, marbles, and Bovey Pottery. Browse in the gift shop, glass shop and take refreshments in our coffee shop and licensed restaurant'

Saturday, 2 March 2013

Escot - 'The Natural Place' Review

 'Escot is the natural place for a great family day out'

This half term we spent one of our days at Escot near Ottery St Mary and I thought I'd share our experience with you.
We went on their Red Squirrel day which meant that all children were free which made it fantastic value for money as I had four children with me.
Normally it costs £8.50 per adult and £7.00 per child or you can get a family ticket (2+2) for £29.00. Which seems to be about the norm for day out prices these days.

As we have never been to Escot before I didn't really know what to expect and to be honest I don't really think I was expecting much but I was so wrong!
There was so much there to do and even though we spent the entire day there we still didn't get to see everything that Escot has to offer. 

We started our day off by getting completely lost in the huge maze, which was interesting with four children all going in different directions!

After we finally found our way out (with only a little bit of cheating) we headed up towards the play barn. From the outside it doesn't look like much at all but then you step in through the door to a wash of bright colour and lots of fun things to climb, run and jump on. 

There's a section for older children an also an area for toddlers. The barn also has tables and chairs in it so you could stop here to have your picnic lunch if the weather wasn't great. 
The play barn was just as good as any other indoor soft play place that you would go to and you could probably spend hours just in there.
When I finally managed to get the four I had out of there we followed our map up towards the storytellers corner and we found a park with swings, a climbing frame, a train and some tunnels.

 After this we headed towards the Death Slide...

Now that thing was terrifying! Well it was for me but the kids loved it, they just have no fear. Apart from my four year old that got all the way up there, took one look over the edge and then decided better of it and promptly came back down (the stairs) and sat and had his picnic instead. He's a wise one that one.
When the kids had had enough of an adrenalin rush we carried on towards the red squirrels, which were all asleep, tucked up in their beds, so no photos I'm afraid.

We then made our way through the trees, there is a never ending supply of great climbing trees here.

and we headed for the bug playground and pirate ship...

 Here you will find slides, poles, a massive pirate ship, climbing frames and rope bridges...

By this point the little ones were starting to feel a bit worn out so we started to head back towards the start and then we found the otters...

They were very sweet and my youngest, who is 2, was fascinated by them. She spent the entire time with her face stuck right up against the glass while they squeaked at her from the other side.

We then found some more animals in the pets corner and the beautiful birds of prey.

While carrying on towards the exit we had to go past the play barn again and miraculously the younger two suddenly had a burst of energy so we went and had another play in there.

Just before we reached the exit we noticed the Saxon Village which we must have missed on the way in (everyone had maze on their minds) so we had a quick look in there. It was very authentic and everyone was dressed in full Saxon attire. The kiddies toasted some marshmallows around the open fire. Sorry no pics of this, I was more concerned about watching the little ones to make sure no one ended up in the fire!

and finally we made it to the exit. On the way back to the car I also noticed a sign for the Wetlands which is a whole other area that we didn't get to explore.

 So there you have it, our day at Escot. It was a fabulous day out and thoroughly enjoyed by all. 

Obviously I haven't covered all that Escot has to offer (that would be one monster post!) but if you go to their website then they have all the details on there or why not go to Escot and see for yourself.