Okay, I’ll admit it. I’m 29 years old and the idea of going to Tayto Park last Saturday excited me to no end. Primarily because I’m the biggest fan of Tayto crisps in the world (no seriously, I just can’t get enough of them) and secondly because it is home to the Cú Chulainn, which is pretty much Ireland’s only roller coaster. Oh, and it also happens to be the biggest wooden roller coaster in Europe. Considering it only opened a week ago, I had every reason to be excited!
Honestly, I didn’t think there would be that much else to do at Tayto Park and I didn’t really care as I was only after one thing! From the moment we got off the bus (which was only 8 euro return – cheers Bus Eireann!),we were in for a pleasant surprise. The sun was shining, the queues were short and free Tayto crisps were to be found everywhere!
They had some old school 90’s music such as Venga Boys and The Spice Girls playing at the entrance,a sure fire way to get people in a good mood. They gave some free crisp vouchers away with the entrance fee (15 euro per person) and within 10-15 minutes we were bee lining for the roller coaster. No messing around here.
I can’t really explain how awesome it was. It was SO much better than I imagined. Everything was so new, everyone was so excited, everything smelt like freshly painted varnish. The ride was way longer than we expected and it took us a good 5 minutes to calm down once it finished, with our adrenaline pumping like mad.
There was so much stuff to do (yes, ever for a group of twenty-somethings) that we didn’t have time to stop for lunch. A bag of crisps, an ice-cream and a wonderful MAGICAL thing called Twisty Chips was all we had to keep us going all day, not that we cared too much. The price of the food was very fair, and we never felt like we were being ripped off.
Besides the roller coaster, we went on The Rotator (which was a sometimes terrifying ride that spins and swings you around and upside down in the air) the high ropes course (if you’re scared of heights…good luck!!) the 5D cinema (way better than expected – we loved the water and the bubbles) and did a quick tour of the Tayto Factory and accompanying Vortex Tunnels which freaked me out more than any other ride.
There is also a playground for younger kids, an animal park (we loved all the unusual animals such as meerkats and the Ocelot), a zip line course and few other amusement rides. Sadly we ran out of time so could not do or see everything. It’s just another reason to go back again!
Address: Tayto Park, Ashbourne, Co. Meath
How to get there: Bus Eireann bus number 103 leaves from Bereford Place at 10am and 11am on Saturdays and Sundays.
Cost: 15 euro entrance fee. You can buy tokens for the rides or pay 15 euro for an all day ride pass.