We’re just back from Shrek Adventures London (or Shrek’s Adventure! London as it’s officially known or Shrek World if you’re my little 3 year old!) so I thought I’d share a review of our Shrek experience.
Our Review of Shrek Adventures London
In short, we loved it! A lot more than we were actually expecting to in all honesty. I took my 3 year old, Nova, and my 4 year old nephew, Franklin. Nova is a big Shrek fan and has watched all of the Shrek films loads of times. Both the boys were super excited for our family day out and it didn’t disappoint. I assumed it’d be a day for the boys, but Jay and I had a good time too. Hurrah!
Shrek’s Adventure! London is an immersive, interactive experience. Housed on the River Thames in London, it’s near some other popular UK attractions for families (London Eye, Sealife etc) and so it’s a perfect base for a fun day out. We teamed our visit up with a special lunch at the equally immersive, Rainforest Cafe.
So What Happens at ‘Shrek World’?
Well, it’s hard to tell you too much without ruining some of the surprises. Photography isn’t allowed once you’re on the tour, so I’m also limited on what I can show you, so here goes.
In simple terms you complete a quest to outrun the infamous witches, moving from set to set. It’s fun, fast-paced and full of all your favourite Dreamworks characters. There’s a 4D ride, button pressing quizzes, audience participation, singing, dancing – the whole shabang.
The activity is inside (so perfect for a rainy day) and the experience starts by following a number of themed corridors, which is essentially where you ‘queue’, but it was non-existent during our visit (a Sunday morning) so we flew through. You experience the fun in groups of up to 40 people and I think there were around 20-30 in ours, but it felt small.
The Shrek Experience
We started by meeting Princess Fiona, who set the scene for the 70-minute experience. You don’t need to watch the movies to follow along, but our two loved recognising some of the characters. And we loved the adult jokes that went above the little ones’ heads and carried on throughout the experience. She encouraged everyone to always let the kids go at the front and it did seem to work.
We climbed aboard a big red bus and put on our 4D classes so that we could fly to Far, Far Away Land. We whooshed and soared above the clouds alongside Toothless (from How to Train Your Dragon), Po (from Kung Fu Panda) and others.
It felt a little dizzying at the start, but once I got used to the motion it was fun and our boys were happily waving at all the characters and giggling when the water splashed their faces.
We accidentally squashed a witch when we landed and so began the chase from Rumpelstiltskin and his gang of witches. We moved from set to set meeting new characters (live actors) who would tell a little story and give us a clue or prop to take to the next set to help us find Shrek who would help us escape the witches.
A Step into Shrek’s World
The little ones got involved, putting things into a cauldron or pressing buttons, so it always felt like something was going on. The dads even got involved a few times, though perhaps a little more reluctantly. Jay had a lucky escape!
At various times the lights would go out or we’d hear a cackle from a witch and the boys would be full of anticipation, asking me what was happening and almost running to the next bit. I guess you could say they totally brought into the story!
Shrek managed to rescue us in the end and the boys got the chance to have a cuddle with him. Although there was an official photographer (for which you pay), we were allowed to take some photos on our own camera (though I won’t share here as I don’t share pics of my children’s faces, but those boys are beaming – so cute!).
More Than Just Shrek
We then entered an open set with lots of Dreamworks backdrops and props where we could play and take our own photos. The boys loved the How to Train Your Dragon set.
All in all we had a great day! Beforehand I’d read reviews moaning about huge queues, hot rooms, long waits but that simply wasn’t the case for our visit. As soon as we left the boys asked to go again, so I think that says it all really.
Tips for Shrek’s Adventure! London
1. Buy Your Tickets in Advance
If you have your tickets you can get scanned in straight away and enter. If you don’t, you’ll need to go to the Box Office entrance and then come back out to enter the main entrance (where there may be a queue). Save yourself the bother of two (potential) queues!
Oh and you’ll also save around a tenner by booking online. And let’s face it, family days out can be expensive so every saving helps.
2. Book the First Slot of the Day
We went for 10am on a Sunday, which was the first slot of the day. This meant we didn’t have to worry about any of the other groups overrunning and delaying our tour. It also meant we didn’t experience any queues.
3. Arrive 15 Minutes Early
Arrive before your chosen slot, especially if you need to go to the Box Office first.
4. Brief Your Littles
You know your kids better than me, but for us it really helped to explain to Nova and Franklin (age 3 & 4 years old) that it was all just a game and pretend. This helped to reassure them and take the edge off any tense moments. I told Nova to laugh at the witch if she appeared and this totally worked!
There were a couple of young kids – maybe age 2 or 3 years old – who cried after the bus experience and when a witch appeared, so if you have a nervous child you may want to consider that.
5. Allow 70 Minutes
If like us you plan to make a day of it and take in some other sights in London, allow 70 minutes for the visit. This was helpful to know when I was making our lunch reservation.
After Shrek’s Adventure! London we walked along Westminster Bridge, stopping at all the buskers (life with kids, eh?!), down to Trafalgar Square where they chased the pigeons and tried to get in the fountains (again, typical life with kids!) and then to the Rainforest Cafe (which is expensive, but so worth it for mini-explorers, especially if you have an animal-lover like Nova).
6. Be Prepared for the Gift Shop
You have to walk through the gift shop to exit and it has some amazing keepsakes and toys. Be prepared to either part with some cash or have your excuse in your head. We walked away unscathed, but I imagine others might not be as lucky!
How Much is Shrek Adventures London?
If you buy your tickets online an adult ticket is from £21. If you buy on the door that price jumps up to £30. You can pay a little bit more for a fast track ticket and there are other packages available where you can get Shrek ears or tickets for other attractions.
Where to Find Shrek Adventures London
Shrek’s Adventure! London, Riverside Building, County Hall, Westminster Bridge Road, London, SE1 7PB.
Opening Times of Shrek Adventures London
Monday: 10.00am – 4.00pm
Tuesday: 10.00am – 4.00pm
Wednesday: 10.00am – 4.00pm
Thursday: 11.00am – 4.00pm
Friday: 10.00am – 4.00pm
Saturday: 10.00am – 6.00pm
Sunday: 10.00am – 5.00pm