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Dream World – still a great day out in Bangkok
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17th May 2017 Posted by vadim No comments
Filed in: BangkokLifestyleSee & Do

One of Bangkok’s oldest attractions is still a great day out for all
the family – Dream World in the Thanyaburi area of Pathum Thani north
of the Thai capital.

Opened in 1993 the theme park is both value for money and well
maintained with rides and attractions that will make for an enjoyable
and fun day out for very young children through to teenagers to
adults.

The staff and maintenance of the park were excellent.

Having not been to the Dream World for 13 years since my children from
a first marriage grew up it was with some trepidation that I took my
two little ones from a new relationship this week.

They are aged one and four and I thought they might not have enough to
do for a half day and besides I was worried the facility might be past
its sell-by date.

How wrong I was – we arrived at midday and even when the park closed
at 5pm my four year old wanted more! Though admittedly the one year
old had fallen asleep!

Set in 63 acres of flat land north of Bangkok the park has for a long
time been one of the city’s major attractions. No one expects Disney
World or Alton Towers but what Dream World delivers is a friendly and
safe experience with a great sense of variety and ingenuity.

Thai style with all of the positivity and none of the negativity that
sometimes implies.

Parking is easy and though I had heard rumors about a double pricing
structure these were unfounded. A park entry is just 200 baht but it
is easily worth getting the 500 baht ticket that includes most of the
rides and features.

Paying separately for just a handful of these will soon exceed 500
baht so the ticket represents great value. I asked whether there would
be enough that a 110 cm child could do on the ticket and was assured
there should be if she was brave enough! And so it proved.

In fact five hours later and we had only accomplished about half of
the potential of the park so a full day will definitely be on the
cards next time.

After a ride on the cable car to get perspective on what was to follow
my young children loved the fairytale adventures of the Photopia
feature in the opening Fantasy Land section of the park.

The Giant’s House from Jack and the Beanstalk was imaginatively
constructed and very popular with my daughter putting perspective to
bedtime stories while mum took the one year old in the buggy to see
the ducks and the lake at close quarters.

We then moved onto the Adventure Land area where most of the rides are located.

I was pleasantly surprised that some of the more intense rides I could
enjoy with my four year old. These included a roller-coaster in the
dark called “The Black Hole” that used to be called “Space Mountain”
years ago. Although it could have done with a few more lights it was
still great fun.

Mum took her to see a 4D simulator experience that was very popular.
This alone cost 120 baht per person so that 500 baht ticket was a
must. Following that was a feature called “Aliens” where the little
one memorable and scarily had her back scratched by an out of this
world creature!

A brilliant change of pace was provided by the “Animal Farm” where the
children could get up close and personal to cows, pigs and goats.
Adjoining this was a fantastic feature – an enclosure where there were
many exotic birds so tame that the children could touch them and feed
them.

Seeing parrots, peacocks and quails so close was a great experience.

It was good to see facilities to wash hands after petting the animals.
There was also good signage to explain about the animals in Thai and
English.

We missed the Animal Show that is held twice daily midweek and three
times on weekends – next time. We also missed the Hollywood Show – a
well-choreographed “James Bond 007 show” that was always popular with
my children years ago. It was good to see that it was still running.

Many other smaller rides followed – all of which were properly manned
and run – until the highlight of the trip, at least for the four year
old. That was her first experience of snow in the Snowtown feature.

You have to pay extra – 150 for adults and 130 for children for this
but it is worth it. Inside everyone is kitted out in wellingtons and
coats. It is just as well to take your own socks and gloves as what is
billed as zero degrees inside feels more like minus ten after the heat
of a Bangkok afternoon.

Inside there is a lot of snow and ice, models of penguins, elks and
mammoth, an igloo and so much more. The toboggan ride down a bumpy
slope was very popular and with the end of the day approaching we had
the place to ourselves.

Throughout the park there are many places for snacking ice cream and
candy-floss as well as a proper meal. This includes a well-appointed
food court and a KFC.

There are lots of “sideshow” features that you have to walk past where
more money can be spent (and wasted in my view) but such was the
interest for my kids in the other things that were available they were
not too upset at not being allowed to play by Mr Meany dad.

One of the additions to the park from years ago was a “water – park”
section. This is also available in the price of the 500 baht ticket
and would be a great way to spend an hour or two and provide a highly
active bit of extra variety, especially in the heat of the day.

There are also a large number of more intense rides that are only
available to older children above 140 centimeters in height and
adults. These included the Hanging Coaster, Vikings, Hurricane and
Bumper Cars. Those looked a big hit with the older patrons.

Throughout the park were a huge amount of photo opportunities
especially with cartoon characters and static displays. The flora of
the park was also in immaculate condition.

Above all else – and something that was very heartening for me – were
two things about Dream World.

The first was the maintenance – some attractions such as the iconic
“Supersplash” (a drop into water on a raft) were closed for scheduled
maintenance. We can always go next time and for someone like myself
who has inspected countless facilities on behalf of safety surveys for
school trips I could feel confident that the place was looked after.
It certainly looked the part from top to bottom.

The other was the staff. Everyone was smiling – sure you would expect
that in Thailand – but everyone was doing their job. And caring about
the customer and the individual’s experience.

Staff at the Animal Farm explained about the animals and brought extra
milk to feed the goats free of charge. The staff on the rides followed
their regulations and explained things clearly.

At the end of the day in Snowtown the staff were still happy to make
the experience a fulfilling and enjoyable one for us. They took the
trouble to offer to take a video and pictures and there was no rush to
get us off the premises. Everywhere I saw staff who took pride in
their jobs and that meant a lot to me and my family.

Yes, despite being nearly a quarter of a century in existence Dream
World is as good as ever. It will certainly be on our list of things
to do a few times a year for many years to come and like my previous
kids will be part of the new family’s growing up.

Dream World can be reached from Bangkok by taking the Nakorn Nayok
road from Future Park, Rangsit. By car it is about seven kilometers
down that road with a clearly marked U-Turn and entrance over the
roadside canal.

Gerry Carter

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