Although I had been to Cadbury’s World with my wife before, we had never taken the boys, until now.
We are all big chocolate fans in our house and with the boys being off school, we decided to show them where their favourite chocolate was made.
A day trip review at… Cadbury’s World
My wife and I do our best to explain to the boys where things come from and that there is a process of events before products, or items, hit the supermarket shelve.
Chocolate is something that is consumed on most days in our house, whether it be through cakes or bars of one shape or the other. And, when I say we are big chocolate fans, none of us are quite the size of Augustine Gloop from Charlie and the chocolate factory (although the boys might suggest I’m well on my way).
With my wife needing a bit of time off to de-stress from her job, I decided to book some time off so we could all go away for a trip to Cadbury World.
This was the worst journey ever, or at least it felt that way.
I turned the Sat-Nav on and as they do, it gave me a rough time of arrival, 14.53. We had a three-hour trip ahead of us, give or take twenty minutes.
Five minutes, yep, FIVE MINUTES into the journey came the first of many “are we there yet?” questions. I know kids get excited, but seriously, five minutes? That’s some kind of record.
It did calm down when they were given their tablets, but once the batteries needed charging, the boredom settled in and the bickering returned.
Coupled with being stuck in traffic (adding another hour to the journey), it wasn’t long before we made a pit stop in a lay-by, making broken promises of turning around and going back home. It took a whole hour before one of them quietly asked “are we nearly there yet?”
Arriving at Cadbury’s World
Although the boys still had no idea where they were going, they were still up early the following morning. With the accommodation being a family room in a nearby Premier Inn, anybody that has stayed in one will know that once somebody is awake, other members of the family aren’t far behind.
Because our allocated spot at Cadbury’s World was 10.40, we had to make sure we left with plenty of time to spare. Allowing an hour and a half for a twenty-minute journey seems to be the normal thing to do when you have kids.
With the boys still not knowing where we were going, Harrison continued with the traditional method of asking “are we there yet?” whilst Joshua decided to be clever and look out for the road signs. Their eyes lit up once they had realised they were going to Cadbury World.
Arriving with twenty minutes to spare, gave us enough time for toilet breaks before joining the queue to get in. I must admit, it looked worse than it was. But we queued for no more than ten minutes and all that standing around was soon forgotten about when we were all handed three free bars of chocolate each.
Cadbury World – The Tour
This was the very beginning of the tour, and it wasn’t a great start. As soon as we opened the double doors to go in, all Joshua saw was dark lights and creepy noises, and in no time at all, he was off to the next section.
Harrison was fine though, he just held my hand whilst I read about the origins of where chocolate came from and what the difference was between cacao beans and cocoa beans. If I had a little more time, I’m sure I could have discovered more interesting facts in this darkly lit and noisy, jungle effect area.
Journey To Europe
This little bit was again, interesting and well presented. I think that because the presentation was presented by ‘real people’ by way of a hologram, it even got the attention of the kids.
Although the boys thought it was a good idea to watch whatever one was available, watching them in order is a better idea.
This Bull Street presentation was done in a small, ‘cinema style’ room and gave a brief history lesson behind its founder, John Cadbury.
The boys loved it and although they probably didn’t take in most of what was said, they were fascinated by the talking head above the stage. A recent viewing of Harry Potter made them think they had seen the ghostly figure somewhere before.
The Cadbury Story
This again was another little theater, but this time, giving the story of Cadbury’s as a business and how it has evolved over the years.
The film was broken up with a few surprises that managed to keep the kids entertained the whole way through. As we made our way into the next room, both the boys were still laughing and pretended to be big lumps of jelly.
This was again, was another small, enclosed area with about four or five video players, each showing you how your favorite chocolate is produced.
The boys loved the fact that they could watch how Cream Eggs, Fredo Bars and Chocolate Buttons were made.
How do they make Creme Eggs is a question that is repeatedly asked, year after year in our house, well, now we know?
Manufacturing and Packaging
This part of the self-guided tour gives you the opportunity to see how the ‘shop floor ‘ operates. With big screens up, throughout these two departments, the first thing that stuck out in our minds was the sparseness of staff V’s machinery. A huge contrast to the presentations we had been watching not some thirty minutes earlier.
This is a little car (Beanmobile) ride through the world of the Cadbury’s Character, Bean. Although the boys had to wait for about thirty minutes, they enjoyed the short ride around a display of little Beanie figures doing various different things.
It also gave us the opportunity to update our fridge magnet we had purchased twelve years earlier. This time, there were four of us in the car instead of just the two of us.
The demonstration area is by far one of the more active areas within the tour, with plenty going on. This is where chocolatiers have the opportunity to show off their skills by showing Jo public exactly what could be done with chocolate.
The boys (and us) were really impressed with some of the products the chocolatiers had produced, including…
As you’d expect, there was also a chocolate making demonstration area. And unlike last time, the nice people at Health and Safety, made sure there was no tasting involved. Instead, we were given a pot of melted chocolate with a choice of toppings, just before we entered the demonstration area.
Ah! This brought back memories. Far too many for my liking.
It’s funny how these things take you way back to your childhood, such as the finger a fudge adverts rather than the products of yesteryear like the Fuse Bar.
This section was certainly for the older generation that wanted to remember the adverts from the past.
This was great fun for the kids. It kind of woke the kids up a bit from the ‘boring’ Advertising Avenue.
There is plenty of interaction, running around stamping on Cream Eggs and a great wall that produces lots of fun with bouncing bubbles. If fact, the only way we could get the boys out, was to tell them their favorite part was next, the gift shop.
The Worlds Biggest Cadbury Shop
It’s hard to find the gift shop at any attraction these days as all the big attractions are experts at marketing. And, try to form, as we left the Purple Planet area, the doors led straight into the gift shop.
There was branded merchandise everywhere. And, tucked away in the far corner, was the chocolate, all at factory prices. Needless to say, we didn’t really buy that much chocolate, just a box of Fredo Bars. And despite our craving for chocolate, that will actually last for at least a couple of months.
Some of the products were expensive, but that is to be expected in a top attraction such as Cadbury world. However, buying things like fridge magnets and pin badges kept the bill at the till within an affordable budget.
The one thing that did stick out as great value for money was the souvenir booklet, it is only £2.50 and is packed with the things you’ll probably miss due to keeping an eye on the kids.
The Bournville Experience
This had changed somewhat to the last time we visited Cadbury World. I remember the old packaging being in a cabinet but this time it was laid out in a ‘shop window’ style exhibit.
This part of the tour also concentrates on the staffing benefits and working conditions the staff used to be given in return for their hard work.
As we left the room, it begged the question, “I wonder what their T’s & C’s are now, compared to previous employees?”
This is also another new addition to Cadbury World. 4D cinemas are popping up at quite a few places now but in the boys own words ‘that was epic, the best one yet.’
I think it was more to do with the fact that it was a ride (like the Santa sled ride at Peppa Pig World) and not a short film (such as the Pirates at Lands end or Ice Age at Euro Disney).
With this being the last attraction and the fact that it’s located next to the play area, it was popular and the waiting time was about forty minutes. But, with that said, it was well worth the wait.
African Adventure Play Area
This bit was shut due to the weather. But, credit to Cadbury World, there was an entertainer on in the same area. And because it was in a marquee, we were able to grab some shelter, after eating our lunch, whilst watching a great magic show put on by – A Box of Tricks.
Prices – At a Glance
Please remember you will need to book your slot when purchasing your tickets. You cannot just turn p on the day.
Did Cadbury World Represent Value for Money?
In a nutshell, yes.
We paid £47.28 for a family of four, arrived at 10.20am for our 10.40 pre-booked slot and found ourselves (exhausted) getting back in the car just after 15.00.
It was clean, the staff were friendly and the food/snack prices were set at a price you would expect for this kind of attraction.
As you would expect, toilet facilities are dotted around and not that frequent so make sure the kids go before they go in.
Would we return or recommend Cadbury World?
Yes, most definitely. A great attraction for rainy days too.
Me and my Sony Erricson