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My Dreamworld review is scattered around these pages on Dreamworld. Although, I try to be objective with the information pages, I think my views come through anyway!
Dreamworld was the first theme park I ever visited on the Gold Coast, back in 1990.
Over the years, I haven't visited Dreamworld as often as some of the other Gold Coast theme parks and for many years my view was fairly average in comparison to the other theme parks.
Recently, my views have changed. Where I once was of the view I could watch the tigers every day of the week, but the rest of the park wasn't quite as compelling for me, I have certainly changed my opinion as the park has changed and evolved.
My clever children on the other hand have always had a BLAST at Dreamworld!
I used to feel that Dreamworld tries to be too much, which my kids saw as variety! Now, I realise that it is a big park and that you probably need more than one day there to do it justice. I think I just kept thinking that you would have to cram everything in.
If you are really strapped for time, you can pick what you want to see and do in the park in a very action packed day, but if you can I highly recommend looking at a multi-visit pass so you can spread your fun out over a couple of days.
This is especially true at the busy times, as you have to remember you are going to be queuing for rides for quite a long time during our school holiday times.
To give you an example of the diversity of Dreamworld. The Dreamworld Corroboree is a part of the park that most people don't even know exists till they get there.
It isn't what you would go to Dreamworld for. The tigers probably, the thrill rides definitely, DreamWorks zone YES!, but not this part of the park.
The Dreamworld Corroboree area (formerly Australian Wildlife Experience) gives you the opportunity to see native Australian animals and cuddle a koala. It definitely doesn't compare to the experience at Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary.
The rides have been added to and upgraded over the year and there are certainly rides for everyone. Mild, Medium and Extreme - a bit like chilli!
The queuing can be tedious and my major critisism is there is little emphasis on keeping you entertained whilst you wait.
Most people think that there is queuing only for the Big 9 rides, but there are queus in Wiggles World too!
Once, in the Big Red Car queue we stood for 45 minutes for a 1 minute ride.
If someone had been there selling us drinks and snacks, it would have been a welcome distraction from the tedium! It would have saved us downtime too!
As, I said before, I don't think you can do this park justice in one day.
On warmer days (especially between September and May) having the option to go over to WhiteWater World to cool down is a great choice, but this just stretches your time across even more activities.
I highly recommend putting aside two days at least to enjoy Dreamworld and WhiteWater World if you really want to get the most out of it.
Probably the best way to tackle this park is to decide what you want to do most and do that first.
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When I asked my children what they enjoyed most about our September 2008 visit, this is what they had to say.
The little one was 6 years old and she said she enjoyed:
She really enjoyed the Australian Wildlife experience, she hated queuing for rides and was disappointed the Animal Farm wasn't operating. It was a big day for her and she was very tired by the end of the day.
My older daughter was 12 years old. We all stayed together for about 2 hours until it became obvious that the 6 year old wasn't going on any thrill rides!
So the 12 year old paired up with her thrillseeker Daddy and they went off to enjoy the rides!
The two of them, dad and eldest daugher, did the The Tower of Terror where she screamed the entire time. Luckily for her Dad was only about a 10 second ride! They then enjoyed the Runaway Reptar Rollercoaster, the Thunder River Rapids Ride, the Mick Doohan Motocoaster and the Cyclone Rollercoaster. After those she was pumped, but by that time the park was closing.
Overall, our 12 year old thinks MovieWorld has better thrill rides, whereas Dreamworld has more variety. On the other hand she LOVES the tigers!
As you can see even though our two children fit within the Families with kids aged 4 to 13 years category, it was hard to stay together with their different requirements.
We had no option but to split up. I cannot see a way around this for most families with children above and below the age of about 8 years depending on how thrill seeking they are. It was just not an option to stay together.
* This ride has been renamed as Nick Central has been replaced by the new DreamWorks area.
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