Friday, 18 August 2017

Crash & Splash at Surf Snowdonia - A Review

Living in North Wales definitely comes with a host of benefits, such as beautiful countryside, breathtaking mountain views, numerous parks and coastal walks, in addition to some amazing family friendly attractions. Surf Snowdonia Adventure Parc is one of those fantastic attractions and we were delighted to be invited to try out one of their family crash and splash sessions, in their lagoon, last weekend.

Surf Snowdonia is a world-first inland surf lagoon that offers visitors the chance to experience their 300 metre long surf lagoon amongst the stunning Snowdonia scenery. The lagoon can create a powerful wave over several starting points (beginners, intermediate & advanced) which then eases slowly as it arrives at the shore. There is freesurfing available for those who are already capable surfers, in addition to lessons, courses and camps that are suitable for children from the age of 5.

As well as offering some wonderful surfing, there is also much more to enjoy on site. There is the Crash & Splash Lagoon, The Soft Play Shack, Surf Side Deli, Surf Side Cafe Bar and also, some on site glamping. This makes it the perfect venue to enjoy a day out or family weekend away, that will be fun packed from start to finish.

The attraction is situated in Dolgarrog, which is only 7 miles from the main A55 dual carriageaway that runs along the North Wales coast. It is also conveniently situated between Conwy and Betws-y-Coed which are also, lovely places to visit, if you are looking to extend your day even further. We found that Surf Snowdonia was well signposted from the main road and we were able to follow the signs easily, without needing to depend on the Sat Nav.

As we arrived, we could see the attraction from the main road and the kids began to get really excited as we drove past the Crash and Splash lagoon on the way to the car park. There was ample parking available which was also free of charge, so even if you don't fancy a surf, it is an ideal place to pop by and enjoy a coffee whilst overlooking the lagoon. We made our way to the entrance, where we then booked ourselves in at the reception area with a lovely gentleman called Ollie. He explained where everything was, how to get to the changing rooms and showed me where Riley could enjoy the soft play area. We were made to feel very welcome and this gave a great first impression.

As Riley was too young to participate, both Riley and I made our way over to the cafe and Soft Play Shack, whilst Mr F, Emma and Ben went and got changed into their wetsuits. On the way to the cafe we couldn't help but notice some other guests surfing. Therefore, we went and sat on a picnic bench for a short while and spent some time just watching the surf lagoon and observing what a clever design it was. A new wave would be created every couple of minutes, using the special machine which ran down the centre of the lagoon and it was really good fun to watch.

After some time outside we headed into the cafe and Soft Play Shack where Riley was able to burn off lots of energy, whilst I enjoyed a lovely cappucino. This was a fantastic facility that featured plenty for Riley to play on and enjoy. There were numerous slides, ball pits, climbing challenges and space to simply run around in so Riley absolutely loved it! There was a large window that directly overlooked the Crash and Splash Lagoon, so we were able to see when the rest of the family came out to enjoy their session. We stayed in the cafe for around half an hour, but as the weather was nice and sunny, we moved outside once the session began and sat on one of the picnic benches to watch the fun taking place.

The Surf Snowdonia Crash and Splash sessions are basically the chance to enjoy a water assault course that is full of challenges and plenty of splashes. Features include a large inflatable course that involves climbing, jumping, balancing and running, as well as a climbing wall, monkey bars, spinning balls and a rope bridge. The obstacle course is great for kids and family groups, in addition to being a fun activity to try with friends or work colleagues.

You need to wear a wetsuit, which you can hire from Surf Snowdonia for a charge of £5 per person. Alternatively you are welcome to bring and use your own wetsuit, to save the additional cost. You are also required to wear a buoyancy aid and helmet, but both of these are provided and included in the activity cost. All participants also receive a full briefing to ensure that everyone is comfortable with the health and safety aspect of the activity.

There were plenty of opportunities to work as a team and it was nice to see people helping one another along the way. Ben stopped on a couple of occasions to help another child back on to the course who had fell into the water, as well as pulling his sister up several times.

We attended the family splash and crash course which is a slightly extended version than the usual Crash and Splash sessions. This is because the normal Crash and Splash also includes The Blob which is a giant air filled cushion that launches you into the air, then sends you splashing back down into the water. The Blob is only suitable for children over the age of 12 and so it is important to make sure you book on the correct session to avoid any disappointment. The Family Crash and Splash is suitable for children from the age of 5, making it perfect for our family.

The assault course was so much fun and it was great being able to watch Emma and Ben try their hardest to complete the course without falling in. Ben is very agile and fast, so after a few attempts, he was able to complete the inflatable part of the course without splashing into the water. The course is well thought out and features a mixture of easy and hard elements which are designed to test your balance, speed and agility. There was plenty of room around the course for spectators and it was great to see so many people laughing and enjoying themselves. Watching the participants tackle the Crash and Splash assault course, certainly provided a lot of giggles.

Emma and Ben both said that they found the instructors very friendly and helpful. They were always on hand to assist when one of the children fell into the water and would help them get back on to the inflatable when needed. Mr F said that the water was very cold on first entry, but that you soon got used to it once you had fallen in a couple of times. It also helped that it was such a sunny day, as they could warm up quite quickly when out of the water.

Overall, we were very impressed from start to finish. The staff were fun, friendly and helpful, which is always a great sign of a good attraction. It is always nice to feel valued as visitors and Surf Snowdonia certainly made us feel welcome and made sure we had a great day out. The facilities are all very impressive and there is plenty to see and do. Although we only live 50 minutes away, we would definitely stay here for a weekend in one of their glamping pods and make the most of all that Surf Snowdonia offers. The restaurant offered a wide range of dishes that all looked delicious, whilst the cafe offered some fabulous looking cakes and sandwiches. The Crash and Splash session was well thought out and provided great family fun at a very reasonable price. We will definitely be back!

Important Information

Address: Surf Snowdonia, Conway Road, Dolgarrog, Conwy, LL32 8QE

Opening Times: The Wavegarden Surf Lagoon is open from 10am until sunset. The park itself is open from 8am for breakfast through to last orders in the bar at 11pm, 7 days a week. PLEASE NOTE: The Lagoon will be CLOSED for maintenance between the 4th-15th September 2017.

Prices: Costs can vary, dependent on activity and whether it is peak/off peak times. For the most up to date information, all the prices can be found here: Surf Snowdonia Prices

Booking: It is possible to turn up on the day, have a look round and book activities whilst there, BUT Surf Snowdonia is very popular and so the attraction recommends that you pre-book any activities or sessions to avoid disappointment.

Website: For the most up to date information then please visit the Surf Snowdonia website here:

Alternatively you can find them on social media on the following channels -

Twitter: @surfsnowdonia
Instagram: @surfsnowdonia
Facebook: SurfSnowdonia

Disclaimer: We were provided with a complimentary Family Crash & Splash session for the purpose of providing and honest review of our experience. Photographs and opinions are my own unless otherwise stated. Details provided correct at time of writing, but may change in the future, so I would also recommend visiting the attractions own website to obtain the most up to date information.

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