Earlier today I took my two boys and a friend of theirs to Pirate’s Quest in Newquay, after we were invited to visit and review.
The location of Pirate’s Quest in Newquay is so handy, it is right opposite The Manor car park. Which by the way you can pay for parking in via your mobile phone. This came in handy today, when I completely forgot to take any change with me.
The outside of the building starts to set the theme for the tour inside, with wanted posters featuring pirates and pictures of skulls and bones on the building itself.
I didn’t take a huge amount of photographs inside the Pirate’s Quest, as you are only allowed to use a camera in certain sections, plus it is quite dark mostly inside.
When we entered the building ready for our tour that was booked for 11am, we were greeted by very friendly members of staff who showed us into the room where our tour would begin. The room was quite snug with the other people who were also waiting for the tour. Depending on how busy they are depends on how many are on your tour, on a quiet day it may just be you. We were in a group of either 11 or 12 in total I think.
Tours take around and hour and you should definitely try to book in advance on the Pirate’s Quest website if you can – especially in the busy Easter and summer school holiday periods.
The photo above which looks like just a framed picture, is actually a kind of mini tv screen – I’m sure there’s a more accurate or more technical description than that ha! Basically the pirate in the photo moves and talks to you. This screen is in the last room as you exit, but there’s a very similar one in the initial room where the tour starts.
We heard our pirate tour guide before he saw him, as he was singing on his way into the room. He started by talking to us a bit and telling us that we were currently on board a sinking ship and had to leave quickly, but not to worry as he was going to guide us to safety. We went into some different themed rooms and ‘caves’ and the boys had the chance to start filling out their trail quizzes and crosswords that they’d been given at the beginning.
Around the walls in one of the rooms were loads of clues to help with filling in the quizzes and if I have one criticism of our visit, it would be that we felt a bit rushed out of this room before we had finished filling in the answers from the walls. With an extra five minutes we would have had all of the answers I think, but we ended up having to have a sneaky google search at the end to finish it.
Also there were a couple of bulbs not working in that room, which should have lit the information boards up but didn’t. We ended up using the torch from my mobile phone instead. The facts and Cornish myths and legends were all fascinating though and I loved that the boys were learning a bit of Cornish past and folklore.
Part way through our tour we had a different pirate take over to complete the tour, both the pirates were really good and stayed in character the whole time. They both made the boys laugh and worked hard to get us all to get involved and speak to them.
There is a bit of the tour where you go into the dark spooky part and there are a few bangs and things that did make us jump a bit and almost scream. That part was a lot of fun and really so funny. You can choose to stand out of this part if you wish and not go through, which if you have small children or especially sensitive ones I really would recommend. Personally though I thought it was the best part of the tour.
The boys were happy at the end of the tour to receive a chocolate coin and a badge for completing their quiz/crosswords. There was also a vast array of pirate goodies to choose from in the gift shop area as well, though they were a little bit old for all of it so thankfully I got to keep a little bit of my money for a change.
Considering I had possibly some of the hardest people to please with me – two Tweens and a Teenager, they loved it and were smiling and laughing loads during the tour and after it as well. They were still talking about the ‘scary’ part in the car on the way home. We thought that the stone with the sword in and stocks that you could try as we went around were a good interactive touch too.
I enjoyed myself as well and actually learned a few new things, I was absolutely frozen though. I stupidly thought that since we were parking so closely to Pirate’s Quest and it was all indoors, that I’d be fine in just a small jumper. It was really cold inside, possibly colder than outside as it’s an old building.
So if you do visit, make sure you wrap up warm. It definitely is worth a visit though, I love that it’s something a bit quirky and a bit different to do as a family. Have you been and what did you think of it?
**For more ideas of things to do in Cornwall check out my 100 Places to go and things to do in Cornwall post.