A couple of weeks ago we decided to take a little trip to London for a couple of nights. We managed to find a Premier Inn at a decent price in Greenwich – we have never been disappointed with Premier Inn’s when we get a family room, they’re always a really good size, clean and modern.
So we were a bit further out that usual, but it was nice to see a different area and have a walk around the Cutty Sark and the market. There were also plenty of places to eat around Greenwich so at the end of a long day we could get the overground train back to Greenwich, have dinner, and then not be too far away from our hotel afterwards.
We only had one full day in London, and we wanted to be able to have a wander around for some of the time and see more of London, so we decided not to try to fit too much in this time. We’ll hopefully be going again in a couple of months.
It is advised that you pre-book a time slot especially during busier times, which is what we did but there was no queue at all when we went. We did then have to queue to wait for our group to be taken through to the green screen for a couple of quick photos with Shrek (which you can buy at the end), and then onto a little introduction about the tour. You aren’t allowed to take photos during the tour, and are strongly encouraged to turn your phone off too.
Shrek’s Adventure is a unique walk and ride attraction, which starts when you board a magical ‘4D’ bus with Donkey as your tour guide. There is a height restriction, probably because it might be a bit scary for really little one’s and because the bus moves. Ava didn’t find it scary (possibly slightly overwhelming at first), but the oldish lady next to us and her very grumpy husband did, as she wasn’t expecting it to move!
I thought the ‘4D’ animation was brilliant – it feels like you are moving very fast on a track at first which is great fun, and then you are catapulted into the air with lots of things going on all around you. I think this was the best bit of the whole thing, so it would be good to have been in the middle of the tour somewhere, or another thing similar for a bit of variety, but the magic bus is the start of the adventure so it obviously needs to be at the start. You are all strapped in during the animation, and wear 3D glasses.
After that there are fairytale themed shows from which you walk from one room to another meeting real-life characters from Shrek and other fairytales whilst you try to rescue Shrek from Rumpelstiltskin. The fortune-teller in particular was very funny and all of the actors were great.
There are a few witches during the tour, and it is suggested that Shrek’s Adventure is best for kids ages six and above, and I can understand why. Ava wasn’t really scared, although I think she maybe wasn’t sure what was real or not at one point, but I do think she would have generally been more interested in it all if she was a bit older, especially because you are standing up or walking around for most of it.
In each room someone in your group is given something to help you carry on the search for Shrek, which is fun for the kids and there are some appearances throughout of characters such as the Gingerbread Man and Puss in Boots to keep the Shrek theme going. I really liked the Mirror Maze despite feeling totally lost and confused, until the group of people we were with just kind of gave up and congregated in one area so we couldn’t keep going! The Mirror Maze was one of my favourite parts though – very disorientating and fun!
I do kind of wish there was maybe something a bit different in the middle of the adventure somewhere – perhaps a little film or something similar to the magic bus, so that little ones can have a little rest and just for something a bit different. But overall it was good fun, and we really loved the magic bus. The staff were all really lovely, and the actors were great.
At the end of the adventure you can have your picture taken with Shrek, and there are other photo opportunities with some other characters.
Shrek’s Adventure is in a great location next to The London Eye and the SeaLife Aquarium, so particularly great for a day out if you have a Merlin Annual Pass.