I visited Treetop nets in Heaton Park, Manchester on its opening weekend with my husband and three children (aged 10, 9 and 6). Treetop Nets is made up of giant trampolines, walkways, slides and tunnels all made from netting, strung high above the ground in the trees. After a short safety briefing with very friendly and welcoming staff, we were let loose for our two hour slot to explore the maze of nets.
We had loads of fun bouncing on the numerous net trampolines (which is quite a bit harder than jumping on a normal trampoline) and throwing the giant exercise balls at each other, or sitting on them and trying to bounce each other off.
There are staff visible in all areas and they were absolutely brilliant – instigating games with the children and generally adding to the fun. The slides were my favourite – essentially holes cut in the net floor, with net cylinders of varying lengths leading down to the ground. You pop yourself inside a sack (to avoid net-burn!) and whoosh down – a great twist on a normal slide experience. At all times, we were completely surrounded by 3 metre high walls of netting, so it feels very safe and there’s no need for any harnesses.
It had rained overnight on the morning we went, and the nets were still quite wet. It wasn’t a problem as far as running around and bouncing was concerned, but it did mean we all got pretty wet whenever we fell over (which was every 30 seconds or so). If you’re planning to stay in Heaton Park afterwards and make a day of it, a change of clothes would be an idea.
The two hour slot felt a little long as the nets aren’t set over a huge area – we had all had enough maybe 20 – 30 minutes before our session ended – and if you want to enjoy the nets as a family activity, it is pretty expensive. For a similar overall cost, you can probably have a whole day out at a theme park….
Treetop Nets is open to children of 3 years and up and adults. If your child is 7 or over, an adult doesn’t need to go on with them, but we didn’t want to miss out so we both went on! If you don’t fancy going on yourself, there are picnic benches set out underneath the nets so you can keep an eye on the kids from there – you can pretty much see around the whole nets. ‘Picnic bench’ is a slight misnomer, however, as they ask you not to take any food or drink into the nets area. If you are planning a picnic, there is the whole of Heaton Park available after your session, and there is a water fountain in the nets area which was very handy.
Access to Treetop Nets is near the stables in Heaton Park and there is a car park right next to the entrance. There are no toilets on site – the nearest toilets are next to the stables which is a good 5 minute walk – a ‘just-in-case wee’ before you go in is recommended!
All in all, great fun, but not fantastic value for money as a whole family activity.
NB: Jane and family were invited to Treetop Nets in exchange for this review but all views and opinions are her own.