A Visit To ‘The Aquarium’
Last weekend we paid a visit to one of my favourite winter destinations, the Wyevale Garden Centre Brockworth – just outside Cheltenham on the Shurdington Road (A46).
Last winter, with a toddler to amuse and a new-born in tow, I spent quite a bit of time there in the aquatic section, watching all the beautiful tropical fish go about their business. This time around, my eldest is nearly 3 and he seems to love it even more. We played a few games like searching out different coloured fish, looking for interesting tank ornaments (pumpkins, divers, pirates) and even trying to find Nemo (first section, top tanks).
If you want to extend your visit, as well as the indoor tropical-tank section there’s an out building with all the pond fish, some of which are blimmin’ massive. (Feeding-time in this area is usually pretty exciting to watch if you’re lucky enough to catch it).
Clearly I’m really impressed with the garden centre’s aquatic offering as I keep billing it ‘The Aquarium’ when talking to the boys. I have been caught out a few times after saying ‘shall we go to the aquarium’ within earshot of someone who either thinks I’ve lost the plot or am perhaps setting expectations a little low (not a bad strategy?).
As a summary of our aquarium visit (disclaimer: not actually an aquarium), It’s not far from Cheltenham and is a great way to while away an hour or two for free in the warm and dry. It’s pushchair friendly and has a large car park with toilets. For anyone bussing it, I think it’s Stagecoach routes 10 and 61.
If you’re looking for a similar experience over the other side of town, Pets at Home on the Gallagher Retail Park near the big Sainsburys (Stagecoach routes C, 41, 42a) has a tropical fish and reptile section on the first floor (there’s a lift at the back of the store) plus rabbits, guinea pigs, hamsters and gerbils downstairs. May see you there. (I’ll be the one telling my kids we’re visiting the zoo on the way in).
Laura, November 2016
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