Friday 16 June 2017

Treetop Nets Review, Heaton Park, Manchester

Treetop Nets has recently opened at Heaton Park in Manchester and we were invited along to review. Treetops Nets is exactly what it sounds like, an aerial adventure completely encased in nets. Visitors aged 3+ can bounce, run, jump and slide in complete safety without the need for a harness.

There are only 4 attractions like this in the whole country and Treetops Nets is the biggest, with over 2000m2 of giant trampolines, walkways, slides and tunnels all made out of netting, suspended between the trees and rising up to 12m off the ground..

Stunningly you can barely see it from outside, so we missed it and went into the park, when in fact it's just to the side of the St Margaret's (play area) car park.

Safety is key and anything which can catch on the netting has to be removed. No earrings, hair clips, bangles, diamond rings etc - we want to keep those fingers. Long hair is also best tied so that no-one else accidentally catches it. Everyone starts with a safety briefing, whether you'll be participating or supervising your children from the ground.

In the safety briefing area you are seated on logs with a tarpaulin roof, and there are lots of other benches dotted around so that supervising is more comfortable. Due to the net, you can watch your child pretty much wherever they are.

It's really incredibly beautiful... There are far worse places to sit and relax while your children wear themselves out.

In the middle of the raised net area is a tree house. The staff hang about here as it's a great vantage point and you can see everything for miles. One of the large platforms beside the tree house is a dedicated calmer area for children under 7. When there are no small children in this area then everyone is free to use it.

There are of course slides - 4 giant slides come down underneath the canopy - they're fast and you have to get into a bag to slide to prevent friction burns. Avoid exposed shoulders because if you lean your shoulder into the rope as you slide it'll hurt. That's my personal top tip...

I did of course go up into the nets, although children 7+ are allowed to play with supervision from the ground. It really doesn't 'give' as much as you'd think, the netting is very taught and easy to walk-bounce on.

The nets do of course bounce and you can't 'walk' like normal. Although it's actually incredibly easy to move and a nice low-impact, it is exercise and you are worn out after 20 minutes!

Just as there's a calm platform, there's also a boisterous one. This has loads of giant balls to kick and throw. They're not heavy particularly, but it's quite hard to catch and throw while standing on a bouncy net..

My 7 year old needed a bounce break, so we explored the ground area too. There isn't a great deal to do just now except watch the people above, and try out the seesaw...but it's incredibly peaceful. You can also see the towers ready-built for the Treetop Trek.

Treetop Trek will open a little later in the Summer on the same site at Heaton Park, and will feature two different trails through the treetops using a harness. Visitors travel a course using zip wires, log bridges and other obstacles, to give a 2 or 3 hour experience you will no doubt remember forever...

Or you could simply be fascinated by the water fountain (which is a great touch by the way, as it's a long walk to the cafe and toilets). 40 minutes in total my son stood there. I genuinely don't know what he found so interesting, but he figured out a lot about water pressure and plumbing and he didn't even get wet.  I'm tempted to install one at home...

Treetop Nets is really well staffed by qualified instructors at all times, but anyone under 16 is always the responsibility of accompanying adults.
There must be 1 participating adult for every 2 children aged 3-6yrs.
There must be 1 adult for every 5 children 7-11yrs (participation encouraged but optional).
An adult must be present to sign an authorisation form for any under 16's, has to attend the safety briefing and must remain within the site at all times.

Treetop Nets was excellent fun, we all really enjoyed it. It really makes you laugh trying to walk-bounce and the exercise level was nice and slow for an unfit 45 year old like me. You have the added bonus that the kids are shattered! Yeeeay!

We had a 2 hour session and took a break to visit the loo (10 minute walk) and have a drink half way through. You are given wristband entry, so you are free to come and go as long as you take all children with you!

Treetop Nets is open now - prices for 2 hours of unlimited play vary by age:
Age 3-4 : £13
Age 5+ : £20
Adults : £20
Adults supervising children under 7 : £13
Adults supervising from the ground are FREE, but you really should consider going and playing instead...

I think for a few children 1 hour will be enough bouncing, whereas some others could play all day. Treetop Nets isn't the cheapest experience around, but it's unique and beautiful and I'd recommend everyone try it at least once - I'm actually very keen to try the Treetop Trek...

Treetop Trek opens on July 8th and will cost £18 for a Mini Trek (1-2 hours), or £24 (7+)/£32 (6+) for a 24 zipline Zip Trek (2-3 hours)

We were treated to our visit in order to review.   

1 comment:

  1. This looks so much fun. I think I'd like to do this more than the kids. Looks like your kiddies enjoyed this x