I was a bit scared at first, but then it just got fun; Chatterbox, Age 7

I like trees.

I like trees a lot.

However, I am not convinced I like trees up this close…but then I am forty, and I am not a fan of swinging through them either…

Go Ape Thetford: Swinging

..particularly when the equipment required for swinging makes my bum look considerably bigger than yours…

So when we were offered the chance to do a review of Go Ape Thetford I admit that I did jump at the chance, but that was more to do with me knowing what my son was like – he isn’t called Stuntboy for nothing, and he lived up to his name while we were there, practically running across the obstacles which I clung on to for dear life!

Go-Ape-Thetford-Running

Go Ape is an amazingly clever idea – its an obstacle course high up in the trees – there is one for the juniors, as well as the adults. They even have more sedate Segway courses to try on the forest floor as well.

We reviewed the Junior course as the kids are 6 and 7, and the adults, though 40 and 44, weren’t so keen on testing their Tarzan skills too much. The cost for the junior adventure is £16.00; which considering the course took us about an hour, and also the amount of work that’s gone into building and manning it, represents great value. The kids will be talking about it for years; and Chatterbox already wants to go back, despite being a little scared at first *pensive face*

Go Ape Thetford: Pensive Face

Preparation

The Go Ape Thetford hut is near the High Lodge Centre in the Thetford forest, and you need to pay for parking there – its £11.00 for the day so take note before you go that this is extra to your adventure price.

Upon arrival, you need to read the briefings cards which explain safety requirements, as well as adults needing to sign a disclaimer and a confirmation that if they are not accompanying children, they will watch them from the forest floor. Its all very straight forward.

You then get a short initial briefing, get your safety harness fitted and away you go – up into the trees for your stint as Johnny Weissmuller. You are always safely harnessed to a wire that takes you around the course; you just have to make sure your harness is the right way up and effectively it then “shows you the way.” We decided to go in for action with me at the front, then the kids, and then Brad at the back. *why did I go first?*

Monkeying around

Up in them there trees it was mighty scary!

Well, it was for me, and my legs were wobbling as I took to the skies (ish); but the kids thought it was AMAZING and want to go again… *dam ;-)*

Go Ape Thetford: Collage

The junior course was designed for, er, juniors, so the safety wire was low down and kept getting in the adults way – which made things difficult… *That’s my excuse and I am sticking to it*

Brad even got stuck in a tunnel, which was a little hard on his poor old knees *too much cycling.* However, both the kids needed little help or encouragement in doing the course, and took to it extremely well. The safety briefing was a reassurance for them both, and they were challenged not to fall!

Even if they had, it wouldn’t have mattered anyway, which the very safety conscious Chatterbox was very grateful for. After about an hour of Tarzan play, we cam to the end…much to mummy’s relief and the kids disappointment!

There was a zip wire at the end – and Brad finished off in style *Sort of*

Go Ape Thetford: Zip Wire

The monkeys verdict

Overall, the kids loved it. And both Brad and I were intrigued and scared by it, in equal measure. So much so that we went hunting the adult course – which looked even more terrifying in a strangely compelling way!

Definitely a 9/10 fun factor for the kids, but do be prepared to be a bit jittery as a parent. I was grateful for my certificate at end end *relieved face*

Go Ape Thetford: Certificates

I wouldn’t go back there by choice, but I am not sure my kids are going to let me get away with that one! ;-)

Have you been to Go Ape? Are you thinking of going? What are your thoughts – do let us know below!

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Helen

Helen is a mum to two, and social media consultant and website editor. Since giving up being a business analyst when juggling travel, work and kids proved too complicated, she founded KiddyCharts so she could be with her kids, and use those grey cells at the same time. KiddyCharts now works with big family brands to help them promote their services, as well as offering free resources to parents of kids under 10. Helen also helps other organisations with their social media and blogging strategies, including working part-time as a community manager with Truprint. She can often be found hanging about on social media, and trying to avoid stepping on the Lego her kids keep leaving lying around.