Yesterday we travelled to Essex to check out the newly opened Nickelodeon Adventure Centre.
Having grown up watching Nickelodeon, both myself and Dominic were quite excited to visit.
We arrived early to Intu Lakeside and parked outside what we think was the main entrance. There are no signs outside for the Nickelodeon Centre so we really weren’t too sure where to go or if we were even at the right place. However, the website said the centre was in Intu Lakeside so we decided to park up and take a wonder.
We headed into the main shopping centre and saw a sign that said we needed to head to The Quays. Now, if you have not visited Lakeside before, then this could be quite confusing.
Nickelodeon Adventure Centre is situated by the lake, where the majority of restaurants are. This area is called The Quays.
Once you are outside by the lake, you really can’t miss it!
We headed into the brightly coloured building and collected our tickets. Then we headed upstairs to the play areas.
The layout of the centre is very good – very open planned with lots of space for children to explore.
The first area when you enter is Paw Patrol themed. It has various cars with games inside and on the back, a huge slide (which Ita loved) and a play area with tubes to experiment rolling balls down.
In this area, Ita met Marshall.
There is a small Dora the Explorer area close by which would be perfect for younger children because of the astronomy lights.
Afterwards, we went through to the Teenage Mutant Turtles area! This is one of the bigger spaces with a soft play type area, a balloon ride and a jungle theme style set up.
It is quite a dark space, much to fit with them theme. This area is definitely for slightly older children in my opinion but there are plenty of places to sit in case you wanted to keep a close eye on your child/ren.
In this area you get to meet the turtles. We met Raphael, I think it made Dominic’s day frankly!
One of the bigger areas here is the Sponge Bob Squarepants space. There are lots of interactive activities here and also a boat ride. Online it says that children can ride with an adult as long as they are at least 1.10 metres but unfortunately Ita was turned away and staff said she too small for this. (She is over 1.10 metres so we are unsure why). None the less, Ita really enjoyed this area!
We also went to the Slime Cafe for Starbucks coffees and a little rest. This area is nice and spacious too. It is exceptionally clean and the staff were friendly and helpful. There was a large variety of food and drinks to chose from and we noticed other parents had brought their packed their lunches too.
We also went to the 4D cinema which was a highlight of the day! You must be 1 metre tall to enter. It was a really good show – be prepared for the splashes of water!!
Before going we had read some mixed reviews. However, much of the negative comments I believe are quite unfair. Adults cost £7.50 (cheaper if you book online) and children cost £14.50 (those under 90 cms are free) and these prices are very reasonable for the experience.
In the few hours we were there, Ita met Marshall, Raphael and Patrick. The character meets alone are worth the expense in my experience. Children really enjoy them and it is unusual to meet so many characters in our outing. There are also no time restrictions so you can spend as much time as you like here.
Furthermore, you are able to bring your own snacks etc. This is something that many places don’t allow you to do.
Once you pay your entrance, then you don’t have to pay more for the rides or the 4D cinema. There is no hidden arcade inside either!
I do wonder if people’s expectations are too high sometimes.
The centre is clean and the staff are friendly. The lady who brought Raphael out (and took the professional photos) was unbelievably friendly and approachable. She really made Ita’s character meet really fun!
In terms of parking, Lakeside is FREE! This was a little bonus too.
Overall, we really enjoyed our trip to Nickelodeon Adventure Centre and would recommend it, especially as a rainy day or winter plan!
You can book tickets online here;