This week the lovely people at The Deep kindly invited us to visit Hull’s iconic family attraction. I’d taken the boys before but only when they were really little whilst still on maternity leave. It was just a nice and easy place to just push a pram around and grab a coffee in the Castaway Cafe afterwards. That was quite some time ago so I was excited to see what The Deep had on offer now that the boys are more hands on and engaged with their days out.
The Deep is an education and conservation charity based in Hull, East Yorkshire on the side of the River Humber. It’s home to 5000 animals including sharks and stingrays.
The boys really enjoyed being able to roam around, no longer trapped in push-chairs! The whole place is nicely contained so feels safe enough for them to flit between the different tanks and enjoy watching the fish at their own pace.
What I noticed during this visit is, even though The Deep is for conservation, not profit, they still look after their visitors by helping families save money during their visits.
Here’s my top 7 reasons why The Deep is perfect for thrifty families.
1. Affordable prices
The above prices are per person but you only have to buy once and then can return as many times as you want for the WHOLE YEAR! This is a great money saver for families, especially if you live locally in Hull and East Yorkshire.
2. Affordable Food Or Take Your Own Picnic
There is outside seating with a great view of the River Humber where you can eat your lunch or snacks. If the weather isn’t great though, on weekends and during school holidays, there’s an indoor picnic area in the Snack Bar next to the Cool Seas exhibition with high chairs available.
In the main Castaway Cafe there is an menu full of affordable meals and snacks with meal deals available. There’s plenty of healthy options to choose from too.
For the really little ones, there’s a baby feeding station where you can heat your own food or bottles of milk.
There’s lots of seating too so didn’t feel like there was a rush to eat up and move on which was nice. Quite often at other family attractions I’ve felt parents hovering about with trays full of food, searching for a table to claim and seat their screaming kids. The whole process of choosing food and relaxing for a while to eat and enjoy and ice cream was really relaxing.
3. Softplay Included
By the time you’ve worked your way around The Deep, there’s a chance your little ones are ready to let off some steam. Thankfully there is a softly to allow just this! It’s nice and contained and entirely padded so the children are safe to play. When I think of the cost just to go to soft play though, this makes The Deep even better value!
4. Time To Chill
Some weekends the kids are just so wound up that they need time to chill and we’ll go to the cinema or swimming. But the Cool Seas part of The Deep is one of the most calming places I’ve even been. It had such a huge affect on the boys. The soothing whale music playing and mesmerising jelly fish hypnotised our little ones and gave us a bit of a break, all included in the price.
5. Free Dive Show
At 2pm every day there is a free dive show to enjoy. During these dives there is a talk to listen to and you can see the divers feed the fish and clean the tanks depending on the day.
6. Experts On Hand To Help You Get Hands On
Lots of animal and wildlife parks charge extra for talks by experts and hands on experiences. At The Deep though, there’s loads of opportunities to ask questions or get to touch shark eggs or shedded crab shells.
These touch pool sessions in Dylan’s Discovery Corner also include starfish and sea urchin. The sessions take place every day at 10:30pm, 11:30pm, 12:30pm, 1:30pm, 2:30pm, 3:30pm and 4:30pm so you’re bound to visit when one of these sessions will be on. Just remember to wash your hands afterwards! (All at the child height sinks and dryers).
7. Gift Shop
Most importantly (because some days an escape is required) you don’t have to exit via the gift shop. I know when you’re on a tight budget, the thought of having to pass by all those colourful toys with screaming toddlers can just be too much. However, you can bypass the shop if you need to and avoid the inevitable melt downs.
If you do want to visit the gift shop though, its HUGE and there’s so much choice and thankfully much of it is pocket money prices. We visited during #PlasticeFreeJuly and loved the amount of bamboo and eco-friendly products to choose from.
We had a lovely family day out at The Deep and look forward to returning lots (especially whilst Ted is still free!!). Read here for more ThriftyDaysOut.
*Disclosure – This post was written in collaboration with The Deep.