The Milky Way is a multi award winning family day out situated in Clovelly, North Devon. It was once a dairy farm that now houses numerous attractions for the whole family and we were lucky enough to get invited down to try it out for ourselves over half term.
With three children aged 13, 11 and 3 it is becoming increasingly difficult to find a family day out that actually caters for all three kids equally, so I was amazed and thrilled when The Milky Way managed it. There is a real mix of things to do for all ages, some that can be done together as a family and others that can be cleverly adapted to allow both big kids and little ones to enjoy them.
Activities for the whole family to enjoy together at The Milky Way
Birds of Prey Show
The birds of pray show at The Milky Way is suitable for the whole family and lasts about 20 minutes. They try and do it outside when possible but if the weather is poor they move to an indoor arena meaning the show always goes on. We were lucky enough to watch the show both inside and outside during our visit and although we enjoyed both, the outside one was better as the birds had more room to perform and really show off.
If, during your visit, the show is going ahead outside in the morning then I would recommend you and go and watch instead of putting it off till the afternoon in case the weather changes. If you don’t fancy the show or happen to miss it you can still go down to the birds of prey centre and see some of the birds in their enclosures.
Indoor Play Area at The Milky Way
Normally we find that play areas are great for the younger ones but not so much for the older ones but at The Milky Way the play area is suitable for all ages, even adults are encouraged to get involved. The main attraction in here is the Black Hole, a 25 foot drop slide which was by far a firm favourite with our 11 year old.
There are also some bumpy slides that require a mat to ride, these are much tamer but still fast. Although we saw lots of smaller children ride these alongside the bigger ones we decided to take Layla down on our knee which she loved, over and over again!
The third slide is a brilliant compromise for families, it’s a drop start with a bump in the middle that lands in a ball pond. Again we though Layla was too small for this but the staff encouraged us to take her down on our knee which I eventually did and again she loved it. This meant that for the first time in a long time all three kids (and us adults) were able to enjoy a play area together.
Train Ride at The Milky Way
The train ride at The Milky Way is a short circular route that lasts about 10 minutes and is the perfect family ride as it’s suitable for all ages. It isn’t fast or bumpy and as all the carriages are undercover you can still ride in the rain.
Maze at The Milky Way
The Maze at The Milky Way is right next to the train ride so perfect for prolonging the family fun before you split for the rollercoasters. The path is pavement so no need to worry about mud even in bad weather and it’s not too complicated to figure out either. There are also a few silly instructions along the way which we enjoyed doing and made us all laugh.
Bouncing Pillows at The Milky Way
There are two bouncing pillows next to each so again you can enjoy this section as a family with the older kids bouncing on the larger pillow and the under 5’s on the smaller one. These are great fun and so inviting that loads of adults were joining in too. If you aren’t familiar with bouncing pillows they are a mix between bouncy castles and trampolines just with no cover. A great way to relive your youth and have fun with the kids.
Activities that can be adapted for all ages
Bumper cars at at The Milky Way
The bumper cars at at The Milky Way was a firm favourite with all 3 kids and we kept returning throughout the day for extra goes. The best thing about this is that they do big bumps followed by little bumps which basically means the under 5’s can go on with an adult and whiz round in the cars trying to avoid each other where as the following ride will be for those that are happy to bump and crash. Both rides have the music blaring, lights flashing and smoke billowing in giving everyone the same exciting experience.
Activities for the older kids at The Milky Way
Despite most activities being inclusive for all ages there are a few things that are only for the older/taller ones.
There are two roller Coasters at The Milky Way and the Cosmic Typhoon is the one for the adrenalin junkies, as long as they are 1.2meters tall. It’s fast, it’s fun and it’s not for the faint hearted. Your teens will love it.
Just behind the bouncing pillows you will find the Gravity Rider, a 30ft tall and 200ft long slide. Riders must slide down in an inflatable donut and squeal with delight as the fly to the bottom. This was loved by both the boys and us parents, unfortunately Layla was just a tad too young as you need to be four to ride.
Activities for the younger kids at The Milky Way
This was a massive hit with Layla, it’s a small area designed for the under 5’s and is full of extra large balloons that they can throw, bash and hide between.
Bikes and trikes
In the same area there are a selection of bikes, trikes and scooters for them to whiz around on.
Between the balloons and the bikes is a sand pit. Again this is for the under 5’s and is a great place for a rest away from the hustle and bustle of play areas and slides as they can play in there safely and you can sit back with a coffee on the benches.
Activities that are an additional cost at The Milky Way
There are also a few activities within The Milky Way that cost extra. These include pot painting and penalty shoot outs amongst others. The one additional cost activity that we did try was the Ninja stars which is an obstacle course where the player has 20 minutes to activate their tag on as many beacons as possible to collect points. It cost £2.95 for the 20 minutes and was, in my opinion, well worth the money as my son loved it.
Overall thoughts about The Milky Way
Overall we had a fantastic day. We arrived just after 10 and stayed till 4. As a family day it met all our requirements, had a mix of activities for everyone to enjoy as well as a mix of indoor and outdoor activities which was helpful as we went in October and the weather wasn’t great. If you are in the area and looking for a true family day out where everyone, including the adults, can join in the fun then The Milky Way is the one.