After enjoying some rush hour traffic on our route to Alton and then some tiny country village roads on the way to Alton Towers - which must be chaos in peak season, we manage to arrive for opening. We head to the monorail station next to the car park and straight into a large queue to get on it. I think at this point we both sort of dreaded that this was a sign of the day to come but it turned out not to be the case and the park was relatively empty.
With a £50 per person entry fee there's no way we would have come normally but we had converted some airmiles into park tickets so for us it was effectively a free day which is awesome, especially as I'm visiting only as chaperone and photographer while the other half plays on all the rollercoasters which for those interested and planing on visiting I'll be naming them as I go along.
We head for the rollercoasters at back of the park first and Andrew walks straight onto Rita. Thirteen is right next door but doesn't open till 11 but our timing is perfect so Andrew walks straight onto that one too. As well as the theme park being quiet there is also a queue skip system for single riders meaning there is pretty much never any time waiting.
|Andrew on Oblivion|
Our first attempt at The Smiler there is a technical error but unfazed we continue to go round all the rides with Andrew heading on Air, Ripsaw, Nemesis and Nemesis Sub Terra before I join him on a weird laser quest ghost train ride Duel and then I'm convinced to go on my first, and only, rollercoaster of the day;The Runaway Mine Train. Its a kiddies ride but still seemed pretty intense to me which Andrew found highly amusing. But I did go on it twice so not a total wimp.
The flume we also get quite wet. In fact soaked to the skin wet and we end up splashing out (sorry) on the dryer machines which don't really work. So Andrew heads off the try The Smiler again a little soggy while I wait in the sunshine. This is really the only queue of the day. A 45min wait to get on but apparently it was pretty good. This leaves us with half an hour so we squeeze in another go on Rita and Thirteen before we head home.
As a non rollercoaster rider I agree with many reviews that there should be a supervisor type ticket price. If we had paid full price it would have been such a waste for me to go so it must be such a rip off for parents or grandparents who take the kids but don't ride anything at all themselves.
If rollercoasters are your thing then off peak times will definitely make your day worth it at Alton Towers and even if you're in a group the Single Rider queue will help you skip the lines if you don't mind not being next to a friend.
We manage to make it out the park fairly smoothly and even back to the hotel pretty quick and avoiding rush our traffic so we had a good day at Alton Towers skipping all the stresses that usually come with theme park trips.