5 theme parks in the North East as UK’s first Disney resort fails


AS PLANS for a £3.5billion resort dubbed the UK’s answer to failed Disneyland, we’ve put together a list of five theme parks in the North East that you can visit.

The North East has a lot to offer when it comes to the many ways people can enjoy a sunny day, from beautiful country walks to the largest living outdoor museum – Beamish.

However, what is probably less known about the North East is that it also has great theme parks for families to enjoy.

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This list examines all the theme parks in the North East with reviews, ratings and descriptions from TripAdvisor.

As we move forward into summer, despite recent unstable weather conditions, there couldn’t be a better time to get out and hit a theme park or camping this year.

1. North Yorkshire Water Park, Scarborough

North Yorkshire Water Park is home to one of the largest natural watersports lakes in North Yorkshire, according to its TripAdvisor description.

The site covers 250 hectares and offers a range of “fun activities suitable for the whole family”.

With stand-up paddleboarding, kayaking, open water swimming, and fishing, the park has no shortage of activities perfect for a summer day.

Although it didn’t receive many reviews, the site received 74 “excellent” five-star reviews out of a total of 99 total reviews.

One person said: “A great weekend spent at the park paddling, kayaking and ziplining.

“All of that, and then a fantastic meal at the cafe. Super friendly staff and dog friendly too.

2. Diggerland, Riverside Industrial Estate Durham, Langley Park

Echo of the North: Diggerland Image: GOOGLE STREETVIEWDiggerland Photo: GOOGLE STREETVIEW

Diggerland gives adults and children the opportunity to ride real diggers and also offers excavator-friendly versions of classic theme park rides.

According to its description on TripAdvisor “Diggerland is the perfect destination for family days full of action, fun and thrills.”

The theme park offers 20 different rides and rides as well as an array of additional activities.

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Visitors can get acquainted with real JCBs and take a spin on the Spindizzy and Skyshuttle.

The site was awarded a TripAdvisor 2021 Travelers Choice award and received 410 “excellent” five-star reviews and 124 “very good” reviews out of a total of 602 total reviews.

One person said: “Great day out for all ages, even though it was halfway there was always something ready to do if there was a small queue somewhere else.

“The staff were friendly and helpful. It’s not cheap but we think it makes for a memorable day.

3. Flamingo Land, Malton

Echo of the North:

This well-known theme park offers visitors the chance to ride rides as well as visit and see animals.

Flamingo Land offers themed rides, a zoo, a vacation zone and short breaks and occasionally hosts events.

The site has had its share of controversy and is one of the lowest-rated theme parks on this list.

In August 2020, a theme park worker was injured while on a ride, after which he was airlifted to hospital for further treatment.

The site only received 1,331 “excellent” five-star reviews out of a total of 4,473, giving it an overall score of 3.5 “bubbles” out of 5.

One person said: ‘Visited on a very cold day to see the animals. Was stopped by one of the keepers who was about to feed the hippos, who was very informative about the zoo animals and made our day.

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“He went out of his way to provide information at all feeding times and we really enjoyed our visit. It’s not cheap to visit, but when you think about what the zoo has to do to care for these animals and for us to see them, it’s well worth it.

“Make sure you go to all the food and talk time and you’ll have a fabulous day!”

4. Ocean Beach Recreation Park, South Shields

The Northern Echo: Ocean Beach Pleasure Park Photo: GOOGLE STREETVIEWOcean Beach Pleasure Park Photo: GOOGLE STREETVIEW

This theme park is free and located on the waterfront in South Shields and offers over 40 rides and attractions for visitors to enjoy.

It also offers game rooms, game booths and rides for “young and old” as Trip Advisor describes it.

Ocean Beach Pleasure Park received 145 “excellent” reviews and 181 “very good” reviews out of a total of 488 total reviews.

One person said: “This place is such a great day out, well worth a visit. Lots of different rides and things to do.

“Not too expensive and very clean. Honestly, can’t fault the place. Highly recommend.”

5. The Forbidden Corner, Coverham, Middleham

The echo of the North: the forbidden corner Image: GOOGLE STREETVIEWThe forbidden corner Photo: GOOGLE STREETVIEW

This park, best enjoyed on summer days, received a 2021 TripAdvisor Travellers’ Choice award and is the highest-rated theme park on this list.

Praised by critics for its appeal to adults and children alike, The Forbidden Corner offers visitors a maze of tunnels, crazy chambers and surprises.

Critics also praised it for its “outstanding picnic area” as well as its mazes that “took us adults too”.

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The site received 2,420 “excellent” five-star reviews out of a total of 3,310.

One person said: “Amazing place to visit for all ages, we were a group of adults and found ourselves having as much fun as the kids!

“It’s hard to put into words what you can expect here and the pictures really don’t do the place justice as I found the actual experience to be even better.

“Make sure you shop around a few times because you’ll almost certainly stumble upon something new.

“We will definitely be back when we get the chance and hopefully there are plans for expansion. A real hidden gem!”


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