One of our most anticipated trips this summer was to the extremely amazing place that is The Eden Project and I have been intrigued and wanted to visit for years. It coincided (nearly) with our wedding anniversary so it was a great place to mark the occasion as we have talked about coming for so long. The place absolutely blew us away for so many reasons and the children have really been captivated by the mini projects going on within it, there is something for all ages and I believe everyone is changed after experiencing it, we know we as a family took such a lot from the day. The project was about 1 hour 10 minutes away from Callington near where we stayed so we arrived about 1030, although its obviously busy during the summer the parking was well organised and a nice steady walk down a gentle slope got us to the main entry point. Our tickets were waiting for us at the information desk and the children were given their little book (Earth story) to look at while we took a picture of the event board (packed full!)and we planned our day.
With such a varied selection of events taking place we knew we wouldn’t be bored, so we caught the handy train down the bank towards the bio-domes. ( no extra cost to this) We of course had to take a quick pic of us all posing on the balcony with the domes behind us. So exciting! Our definite unmissables were the amazing gorilla show and although not on the board, the rainforest canopy walk was another must do! The walk down when you step off the train is stunning and as far as you can see are flowers, plants and sculptures with bees and dragonflies zooming around. The smell of lavender takes your breath away! The two main domes are the Mediterranean and Rainforest so we opted for one dome then lunch break and then the second! The Mediterranean dome was amazing and the art work beautiful.
The Rainforest dome now! We had been pre-warned to wear summer clothing inside and we were very glad we did, the sweat was dripping off us it felt as real as it can feel (I imagine!) being in a real rainforest. The sight of wildlife flying around the dome, the sounds of the waterfall and flow of the humid air on your skin has a wonderful other-worldly feel about it and the plants and trees are magical. There are so many environmental lessons to learn here and loads of hands on exhibits for the children. We loved seeing what all the different plants were including pineapples growing from the ground and round every corner was something new to discover.
The food choices at the Eden project are epic! From a Mediterranean restaurant serving freshly handmade pizza (looked just like a holiday restaurant) to street food stalls sat outside on the grass, to our choice a wonderful food hall with an option for everyone’s diet! Myself and Cyrus went straight for the Vegan option of Korean Jack fruit wrap at the bargain price of £5.95 for kids and £8.95 adult. The portions were big anyway and the chefs were making them fresh on the premises so they were tasty and stuffed with filling. The kids priced menu, C chose: chicken, potatoes and peas ( veg grown at Eden in their allotments) was £5.25 which I thought was really good. J went for the mac n cheese which he enjoyed and filled the belly of an always hungry 12 year old.. Although busy at peak times of summer it wasn’t long to wait and even though we usually opt for picnic lunches to money save, it was nice to sample these while here, for pudding we went for churros at one of the food stalls yum yum!
One for the dare devils amongst you is the rain forest canopy walk which was a 15 minute queue but worth it for the fabulous views at the top of the dome. The heat is pretty intense though, be warned! And if you don’t like heights or slightly wobbly staircases this ones definitely not one for you! We all enjoyed the views from the top especially seeing the waterfall, it was beautiful. A trip to the gift shop is a must and I wanted everything…but had to reign myself in (holiday budget and everything!) sigh! we did purchase a couple of Hip water bottles (there are loads of refill stations around the place as you do need a lot of water!) at £14.99 but they are really good quality and have come in really useful during the holiday.
One of the exhibits we loved was an interactive story of how animals come to the brink of extinction and are saved by changes we can all make. This was easy for the children to follow and full of loads of hints and tips about how we can affect nature in a positive way and bring about changes such as making an insect house in the garden and recycling. A trip to the Eden Project is always so different as there is always something new to discover and lots of new activities going on. The gorilla story was brilliant and so realistic, the children were way impressed when it started playing catch with them! These shows are numerous throughout the day so you can catch it when you can. I would have loved to have a couple of days here to go to everything!
The storytelling sessions looked great for smaller humans too, its tricky when we have a wider age range to entertain but for teeny tinies this looked ideal.
Getting up close to the mountain gorilla may not be for very little ones but our two smallest showed no fear and loved when he came to say hello!
Our top tips for Eden project joy:
- Dress accordingly for very warm conditions or have clothes to change into. The heat in the rain forest is intense!
- Bring reusable bottles (good for environment and money saving, we went through loads of water!)
- If you can allow budget for food when you are there, theres loads of choice and its good value too.
- Its buggy friendly and the children will love the tractor train
- Remember your sun cream!
- Pre book tickets to save a wait
- Get there early if you can.
- Its a must-see if you’re staying in this area…we want to come back and do it again soon!
For all information on the Eden Project visit their website:
We were kindly invited along to the Eden project but all of our opinions and views are our own.