Today we are visiting the newest family attraction to East Yorkshire: William’s Den. Think Scandi, eco-lodge for free-range children with as much consideration given to the parents as there is for children. This is such a special place, I’m so excited to share with you our review!
Where is it?
Located just outside of Hull in East Yorkshire, William’s Den is set on top of a hill with beautiful panoramic views of the stunning Yorkshire Wolds.
Tell me about the parking?
Parking is free with nice wide spaces, perfect for family cars and getting the kids in and out with no worries about car doors being flung open. There’s an overflow car park too for when William’s Den will undoubtedly get busy during school holidays.
What are the prices?
Visit the website and book in advance to get 10% off. However you can’t pay in advance online for the same day so you need to plan your day or buy in person.
Getting an NUS card is worth it just for getting a discount for here! Worth noting – there isn’t good phone/internet signal at William’s Den but there is free wifi so add yourself to that before you wonder why you can’t access your e-ticket if you’ve booked online.
Here is the full break-down of ticket prices.
Are the toilets accessible?
You know you’re a parent when family friendly toilets excite you and these are truly family friendly! There is baby changing in the men’s and women’s toilets (love this!). The family cubicles have low down toilets for smaller people and you can easily fit in a double pram width ways or length ways one.
There are height adjustable changing stations in the disabled toilets for larger, older children/adults. Also, there’s a communal hand washing are for children. This will be ideal for large groups of children to wash up prior to digging into party food!
What’s there to eat and drink?
There are a couple of areas to eat in and order from the William’s Den menu and plenty of areas where you’re allowed to eat a picnic too. Plenty of high chairs are available for your little ones.
The breakfast menu
This is served until 11:30am which has plenty of choice and the meals were very filling. Worth noting – William’s Den is also licensed to serve alcohol 😉
Mum and I had coffees and these we’re really nice. Pictured are the regular sized drinks.
James would normally eat his lunch around 11am before nap time but he was able to eat a boiled egg and soldiers. I was pleased to see that the owners had chosen high chairs with straps in. This always makes mealtimes more relaxing.
The Lunch Menu
After 11:30am there’s a bigger menu to fill you up with a huge choice of locally sourced ingredients to continue their support of sustainability.
The bigger menu includes, what I anticipate to be one of William’s Den’s biggest draws for parents, their yummy wood fired pizzas. These are freshly made in an open kitchen so you can watch every step of the process.
Where can you sit?
The seating is really comfortable and I’d be happy to even just go for a coffee. There aren’t any soft sofas which I think would add to the laid back feel and definitely make it easier for breast-feeding mums. However, there are lots of grassed areas suitable for picnic blankets if you don’t fancy sitting at a table.
Regardless of what menu time you have visited at, there’s snacks and a wide range of ice-creams served all day.
I person don’t think any food should be blue…but I’m sure the bubblegum ice-cream will be a hit with the children!
Ok, time to tell me about the fun stuff for kids!
Indoors in the actual den. This is what you need to pay for and you get a paper festival style wristband. It means you can go in and out as much as you want. Perfect for making a day out of it. The website says the den is suitable for children aged 2-12 which I agree with.
The den begins inside so no matter what the weather decides to do, there’s lots of places to explore. It’s all wooden and mostly natural materials so shoes are to be kept on at all times. There are lots of staff about to assist and advise the kids where the need to go.
What I really loved was that there was no horrible colourful padding or warning signs everywhere! Kids are able to go on a real adventure and discover their own abilities. It’s like Health and Safety have had a reality check and decided that kids really do just need to be able to be kids.
Water, wood and sand are the main features of the den so take towels and a change of clothing!
The indoor bit is all in one room, so your kids are contained. However, they’ll no doubt feel a sense of freedom running and climbing through the den. My blurred photos demonstrate how hard it was to get James to standstill – he was so excited and in complete awe of the den!!
I can see this being a real option for birthday parties in the future for my boys.
James is pretty independent for his age so I’d happily take him again. However I was exhausted after following him around! His Dad can do that bit next time! And it was needed, as some of the steps were too high for him. Occasionally there was a hole in the floorboards of the treehouse and there would be a fireman’s pole or tree trunk to climb down. This would obviously be brilliant for older kids and more agile parents though 😉
For kids that need a little chill time…
There’s a room off the tree house which is filled with bean bags and toy bricks. This means you can make your own den too.
This room has a lovely vista over the outdoor play area to look out onto the Wolds.
So what’s outside?
Outside the den is just as fun as inside. It’s so much more than an adventure playground! This includes the usual things, playhouses, slides, tyre swings. Everything is so beautifully made and sturdy that parents don’t have to feel left out. I had a go on the big zip line (these are my favourite things in parks!)
Pictured is a section that is obviously suitable for smaller children and is set in a large sanded area. This is perfect for those who enjoy digging.
Ideal for those days where you need to kids to just burn off their energy running about.
As well as the usual stuff, there are lots of areas where you’re encouraged to just climb and explore. You can even build your own tee-pees and platforms. I expect James will name this “Teletubbie Land” at some point!
Outside there’s loads of seating which doubles up as more climbing space! There are also tables for picnics and eating ice-cream from the Snack window.
If you’re just taking toddlers/babies then there’s no need to book a ticket if you’re not going to be entering the den. There is a lovely outside space perfect for the smallest children to play and explore.
Chalk is provided to make your own doodles and all the toys are nice and safe for toddlers.
This really is a super place for parents to meet up.
There’s plenty of space for prams and children to roam about without worry.
William’s Den has a great gift shop full of beautiful wooden toys and wellington boots! There’s gorgeous gift cards too. A perfect place to stock up for children’s birthdays without having to make an extra journey out to shop.
We had a brilliant time today at William’s Den and can’t wait to return.
Next time will be to sample the beer and pizzas! The result of our adventure to William’s Den can be found in the back of the car. All I can hear on the drive home is snoring from them both!
If you have ever been to Gloucester Services and fallen in love with their eco and family friendly style, you will love this place. If you visit William’s Den, I’d love to hear about your adventure and see some of your pictures! Go for a great day out for all the family so your kids can let loose and explore. I’d love to know what you think of it.
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