If you live a fair distance from a theme park or attraction, it’s likely that you will want to make the most of your trip. I find that for many theme parks it’s worth spending a couple of days exploring, especially if it’s not a park you can visit regularly. Alton Towers, deep in the Staffordshire countryside, is one of the those theme parks that you will want to spend some time exploring without being rushed. With a large number of attractions, spread across a large area with beautiful scenery, I always like to spend two days there when I visit. For this reason, I choose to stay at one of the resort accommodation options to make life easier. In this post, I’ll run through some tips on how to make the most of your Alton Towers overnight stay.
The Alton Towers Resort has a number of accommodation options available from hotels, tree houses, woodland lodges and glamping pods. On top of this, there are attractions outside of the theme park which can be accessed while staying in the resort accommodation, making it a far more rounded trip. Throw in some restaurants, bars and children’s entertainment, and you have all the ingredients for a fantastic weekend, or few days away.
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For more information about the awesome attractions at Alton Towers Theme Park, take a look at my previous post here.
It wasn’t until the mid 1900’s that Alton Towers became a ‘resort’ and opened it’s first hotel. Over the years the resort side of Alton Towers has expanded greatly and there are now a wide variety of options available for guests to choose from, depending on your preference and budget. Here are the accommodation options available during your Alton Towers overnight stay.
The flagship Alton Towers Hotel was the first hotel at the resort and is still my favourite. Opened in 1996, the hotel is themed to the eccentric explorer Sir Algenon Alton. The hotel is full of magic and quirky decor, from the reception desk made up of old luggage chests and suitcases to the old car themed fountain outside the main entrance.
The main lobby area opens up onto a large four story atrium – the centre piece being Sir Algenon’s flying ship which doubles up as a stage for the evening entertainment, located on the ground floor. There are seating areas around all levels with a view down to the entertainment area.
As well as the atrium seating area, the ground floor is home to The Secret Garden Restaurant and the Dragon’s Bar where you can relax and grab a drink (or two) in the evening to wind down after a day on the theme park.
Heading outside from the ground floor of the hotel, there is a beautifully landscaped garden with a large lake, fountain, gazebo and seating area. Stunning on a summers day, and nice to take a break from the excitement inside the hotel when the children’s entertainment is in full swing! With a conference centre to one end of the hotel, it is the most ‘corporate’ hotel on the resort.
With over 180 rooms ranging from standard, premium, deluxe and suites there are plenty of options. All rooms feature a double bed with either a set of bunk beds or pull out double bed. I’ve always stayed in the Standard (Explorer) Rooms, which are nicely themed around Sir Algenon’s travels. There are many options of themed suites based around characters and rides within the park, as well as chocolate based rooms, pamper and sleepover rooms.
The resort’s second hotel, Splash Landings, opened in 2003 and brought a bright and lively Caribbean vibe to Alton Towers. Themed around a Caribbean village surrounding the Alton Towers Waterpark which opened at the same time (more on that later), Splash Landings is a fun, bright and tropical resort hotel. Think Calypso music and cocktails and you’ve got the right idea.
The lobby and reception area of Splash Landings also features Ma Garrita’s Bar where you can relax with a drink and look out across the indoor section of the Waterpark from the large windows running along one side. The main dining option of the hotel is Flambo’s Jambo – an exotic buffet style ‘all you can eat’ restaurant seating up to 300 guests. Great for families.
Splash Landings has over 230 rooms including the standard Beachcomber Rooms, again with a double bed and bunks, or two additional themed rooms – the Ice Age Room and Pirate Room, at an upgraded cost. For the most part, I have found that Splash Landings is the cheapest hotel on the resort when comparing accommodation options prior to booking. It’s fairly family orientated, but nice enough for adults. Splash Landings also has direct access to the Alton Towers Hotel via a walkway that passes through the Waterpark. Be sure to take a stroll through in the evening and keep an eye on the changes in carpet between both hotels.
The newest hotel on the resort, CBeebies Land Hotel opened in 2017, adjacent to the Alton Towers Hotel. Not having kids, there’s been no reason for me to visit this hotel on the resort but from the photos it looks very nice! There are 76 rooms, including the standard ‘Bugbies Rooms’ as well as many themed rooms featuring all of your favourite CBeebies shows (of which I have never heard of!). The Windmill Restaurant serves breakfast and dinner and there is also the Musical Meadows Cafe and Bar where the adults can relax.
The Woodland Lodges form part of the Enchanted Village, a large development opened in 2015 which includes woodland lodges and tree houses. I remember seeing the plans for this area and being quite excited about the prospect, but decided to give them a few years to bed in before deciding to stay over. The problem with creating a ‘woodland’ area from scratch on an open field is that the planting and landscaping takes a while to set in.
I left it two years before I chose to stay in October of 2017, when we managed to stumble upon a great deal. The Woodland Lodges are designed in small clusters around central grassy play areas. The quirky buildings that resemble hobbit houses feature two separate accommodations. With your own decked area outside, entering through the door brings you into the main room with a double bed, desk and wardrobe space. There is an en-suite and then a separate room which can be closed off by a curtain featuring bunk beds.
The rooms are cosy with lovely woodland style furnishings and an Enchanted Village storybook on the bed. I was really impressed with the theming and the rooms felt really spacious. The details such as the little fairy doors and windows were a nice touch.
The Enchanted Village as a whole is a really lovely area. With it’s own reception area to check in to the lodges, and it’s own restaurant and bar called The Crooked Spoon, it felt like nicely self contained away from the larger hotels. That said, the hotels were only a 5-10 minute walk away, depending on the location of your lodge.
For something a little more extravagant, the Luxury Treehouses are also located within the Enchanted Village area. There are five Treehouses in total, all with a different style and character. With beautiful decor and private deck areas with hot tubs, the Luxury Treehouses sleep eight or more people, with four bedrooms, two bathrooms and an open plan living / kitchen area. They really are a step above all other accommodation options on the resort.
Staying in the Luxury Treehouses also provides guests with many other exclusive extras not provided at any other accommodation.
The newest accommodation option at the Alton Towers Resort, the Stargazing Pods are a collection of glamping pods located adjacent to the Enchanted Village. Set around a village green area, the pods sleep up to four people and share a communal shower and toilet block. This accommodation is ideal for people with a lower budget looking to stay on the resort.
So, you’re staying over at the resort. What else can you do apart from visit the theme park, I hear you ask? Opening times of the theme park vary across the season, but there are plenty of other attractions to keep you occupied around the resort.
If lazy rivers and water slides are your thing, then the Alton Towers Waterpark is an enjoyable way to spend a few hours. Located within the Splash Landings Hotel, the Waterpark has an indoor and outdoor section features a host of flumes including the awesome Master Blaster – a water coaster that shoots you up hills and through dark tunnels. There are hot tubs, lazy rivers and tipping buckets. There’s also a snack bar located inside. On a sunny day, it’s great to lounge around outside catching the rays. In the winter, the tropical temperatures inside will whisk you away to warmer climes.
Extraordinary Golf is the resorts crazy golf course. Located near the hotels and monorail station, there are two 9 hole courses and all holes are themed to a different attraction in the park. The course is normally open at least one hour after the park closes.
Located next to the Enchanted Village, the Enchanted Forest Tree Top Quest is the resorts high ropes course located within the woodland. There are zip lines, rope bridges and a number of obstacles around the course. A great outdoor activity to burn off the energy and excitement.
We all need a break sometimes don’t we, so for us adults who need to escape the madness, the Alton Towers Spa is a tranquil haven away from the screams and shrieks of the theme park. Located within the Alton Towers Hotel, the spa provides a number of treatments and therapies or you can choose to relax in the comfortable loungers or take a dip in the pool. A perfect way to escape and take time out during your Alton Towers overnight stay.
A fairly new addition to the Alton Towers Resort, the Rollercoaster Restaurant is located within the theme park but can be accessed via a walkway from the resort hotels in the evening. If you’ve never heard of the rollercoaster restaurant concept before, image sitting at your table and having all of your food and drink delivered to your table via rollercoaster track rather than a server. Food orders are placed via a touchpad at the table, where you can then watch everyone’s meals whizzing above you being delivered to the tables. It’s a fun experience.
Everyone likes a deal don’t they? I’m always on the lookout for good deals for weekend breaks and the best thing with theme park breaks are the added extras that get thrown in. When booking an Alton Towers overnight stay through their official website, the likelihood is that you will want to book accommodation and theme park tickets together. It is more cost effective to do this than to book theme park tickets separately.
We have bagged great deals two years running for the start of October. As an example, for a Friday night stay at the start of October (coinciding with the opening of Scarefest) we managed to make a booking for £172.55 for two people which includes the following:
I think that’s great value for money personally at £86.28 per person. Prices obviously fluctuate with Saturday’s being peak times, and all accommodation types vary in cost. Click the banner above to see if there are any suitable deals available for you.
For festive break deals available on selected dates between 27th December 2019 and 5th January 2020 click here.
Have you ever stayed over at the Alton Towers Resort?
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