I am a stay at home mum trying to be a freelance writer - or a freelance writer trying to be a stay at home mum. I enjoy getting out and about with my two little girls and am Chief Editor of Perth Mums Group perthmumsgroup.com.au
Published January 10th 2018
Don't let Dreamworld turn to a nightmare with young children
Dreamworld can quickly turn into Nightmareworld when you have young children with you. My husband and I recently took our 2.5 year-old toddler and 6 month-old baby along to Australia's biggest theme park on the Gold Coast and survived with our marriage intact. When I say intact, I mean 'hanging by a thread' so it can be done.
Children under 3 years are free to enter, so better time to go? Need more convincing? Here's the parents' guide to taking young children to Dreamworld.
Going on a ride by yourself isn't so bad once you're actually on the ride. It's the soul-destroying loneliness of queuing by yourself that's the problem, and more often than not, parents wanting a go on the rides have to split up while the other watches the children. Dreamworld's Parent Swap program allows parents to have a go on the rides while another family watches the kids no more awkward queuing alone while one of you watches the children. Ask for more details when you arrive at the park and the staff will let you know how it all works.
Leave your stroller at home
Don't bother lugging your bulky stroller in and out of the car and into the park and back Dreamworld provides strollers or little carts for hire at a cost of $15 each, along with wheelchair hire for $4. The carts are a novel idea for children who don't like sitting in the stroller but need a rest from all that walking.
Thank goodness for ABC Kids helping parents of toddlers get stuff done since 1991. Dreamworld has a whole section dedicated to this kids' TV staple at ABC Kids World, with attractions including the below:
Bananas in Pyjamas Fun Maze (no height restrictions)
Giggle and Hoot Pirate Ship (no height restrictions)
Hop and Hoot (Minimum height 100cm)
ABC Kids World Fun Spot an interactive activity centre filled with play houses, toys and games.
Don't miss out on meeting Hoot and Hootabelle from Giggle and Hoot, or B1 and B2! My daughter was in awe when she met Hoot, and I think this was the highlight of her day.
Integrated within ABC Kids World, you'll find Wiggles World, an area dedicated to popular Australian children's music group. Along wth character appearances by Dorothy the Dinosaur, Wags the Dog, Henry the Octopus and Captain Feathersword, atttractions include:
Dorothy's Tea Cup Ride (no height restrictions)
Big Red Car Ride take a trip through the Wiggles House in their famous Big Red Car (no height restrictions)
Big Red Boat Ride a swishing, swirling boat ride on the high seas (no height restrictions)
You'll also find the ABC Kids World Shop, parents room and a café in this area.
Welcome to the Wiggle House, to the Wiggle house....
The Gold Coast is hot and humid for most of the year, so bring your bathers and swim nappies and cool down at Wiggle Bay or Pipeline Plunge. Wiggle Bay has been desgined for toddlers and pre-schoolers and has water fountains, jet sprays and small slides, while Pipleline Plunge has similar features and slides that are suitable for children over 100cm in height.
Dreamworld has an old-fashioned Ice Cream Parlour, with the Candy and Nut Fudge store right next door which is located next to the coffee shop. A very clever marketing ploy, methinks. Chances are you won't escape the coffee shop without a trip to the lolly shop or the ice cream parlour. My advice is to hit the ice cream parlour during the park and save the lollies for the drive home.
Take spending money for food
You can't take food or drinks in (although I had plenty of toddler snacks in my bag without issues) so unless your toddlers and pre-schoolers can live on ice cream and lollies, be prepared to dish out for food. You'll find sandwiches, hotdogs, burgers and snacks throughout the park.
Need some time out? Take a trip to the Dreamworld Corroboree, where you can see kangaroos, wombats, crocodiles and more. It's a nice way to chill for a while and let the kids absorb all the excitement.
So don't be afraid, parents! Take the kids along to Dreamworld there may be tantrums and tears, but overall it's an enjoyable family day out for parents of young children.