Having been planned with our chums for a while, yesterday was the day we went for a visit to The Deep in Hull. Dubbed one of the most spectacular aquariums in the world and having a motto “for conservation, not profit” we wanted to go see what all the fuss was about. To be honest, at first I thought it might not have been worth taking a four-and-a-half month old. Would she really get anything out of it? We didn’t really have much to lose given that Phoebe G was free and we wanted to go anyway as I’ve never been and Wifey hasn’t been since she was a little tinker so couldn’t remember much.
Whenever it comes to days out with a little one it seems to require a headache inducing amount of effort to decide various things like, what time shall we go? How many bibs do we need? Will she be warm enough in this? No probably not lets get her changed into something else. How many feeds do we need to take etc etc. Our chums recommended going for opening time after speaking to the staff on the phone, so we took their lead (they’ve got a 2 year old so have done this before) and arrived for the time it opened at 10am. We joined a very quiet queue in a pretty chilly wind so make sure you’ve something warm on if you go early as it might not be very warm!! A short wait and the doors opened bang on time. I’d definitely recommend going for opening as it’s very quiet so you get a really good view of everything as you’re first in.
A big win for us is that your tickets are valid for 12 months and you can revisit as many times as you want so you can really get your money’s worth. Make sure you give the ticket staff your details so you can come back for free! They’ll take your photo at this point so make sure you’ve got plenty lippy on and a posh frock if you care about that sort of thing. We’ll definitely go again when our mini beast is a bit older as she’ll be even more in awe of the sights she’s seen today (she loved it and stayed awake the whole time we were there). Kids under three go in free anyway and adults are £12. Armed forces chaps and chappesses also go in free. Booking in advance saves you some brass too, and it’ll mount up if you’re a big group. More money to spend in the gift shop at the end! Buying tickets was painless and off we went with our (free) trusty guidebook (we didn’t read this though, I won’t lie. But if you’re into reading stuff it’ll suit you!)
Once through ticketing you’ve two options, get fit and healthy and climb up what feels like three million stairs or take the lift. We took the stairs and had to whip out the inhaler at the top. Then it’s on to the main attraction…
Fish, stingrays, fish, sharks, penguins, starfish, jellyfish, eels and another 3000+ creatures await. Phoebe G was so alert walking past the giant tanks which are designed really well so kids of all heights can see. There’s lots of information to read throughout the exhibition and so much to look at. There’s also various activities at scheduled times of the day too, from feeding demonstrations to dive presentations. Throughout the venue there’s plenty toilets so it’s not too important to go at the beginning. I’m sure this will be great for all those emergencies when we’ve ditched the nappies!! There’s a soft play area once you’re round so the little ones can run off any steam they’ve got left whilst mum and dad (and whoever else!) look at snakes, ants, frogs etc. When you come back out from your under the sea adventure you walk through a really spectacular tunnel right underneath one of the big tanks so there’s fish swimming all around you. This makes a great photo opportunity (#SelfieWithNemo anyone?). Once through the tunnel you get a similar choice to when you first started, to take a lift or take stairs back to the surface. We’d reccomend taking the stairs as you go up the side of one of the tanks and there’s viewing stations on every level (there’s three of four flights so you’ll need the rest!). The lift does stop but you’re limited to how much time you can spend in it, whereas on the stairs you can hang around on each level as long as you like. Once back at the surface, you’ll head out towards the very reasonably priced gift shop. Wifey was super surprised at the prices. A lot of gift shops are overpriced but the one here is really good and there’s something to suit all budgets. Let the kids run wild and spend all that spare change you saved by booking your tickets online!
Look out for special events that happen fairly regularly at The Deep to make your visits even more exciting.
With it’s ease of access (just off the M62/A63) and just over an hour away from where we live, once Phoebe G is a bit older we’ll definitely go again. She loved it this time so it’ll be even more fun in a few months time!
A quick stop off at Frankie and Benny’s with our chums for a yummy lunch (we got starters served in mess tins and chips served in a bag which had mixed opinion! Sorry A!) and then we headed home.
5 stars to The Deep. Thanks for a grand day out. Phoebe slept all the way home, dreaming of fish (probably not sharks, she didn’t cry). She then slept all evening, properly zonked look..!