We love Alton Towers it’s one of our favourite places to visit! We have been Merlin Annual Passholders now for around 5 years and it is our most visited attraction, so naturally it was one of the first places we wanted to get back to when we could!
Its advised to prebook online (even if you are an Merlin passholder) as spaces are limited each day.
At the moment there is about a 4 week wait for a Sunday, 8 weeks for a Saturday. Midweeks are much more readily available with slots available within a couple of days. School holidays also fill up well in advance. If you are just a day visitor tickets are fairly freely available for most days.
Id also recommend express parking, its £18 (£12 for passholders) it will save you at least 30-45 of walking from and to your car or having to wait for the monorail. There are also disabled spaces available at £6 and nearer the entrace. Standard parking is £6 and free for passholders
Upon arrival there are bag searches and temperature checks, you may also be randomly selected for a wand search so do allow a little bit of time for this (we arrived at 11 with no bags and were waved straight through!)
The queue times were pretty reasonable our longest wait was th13teen and even that was only 25 minutes but it was midweek in school time. We walked straight onto Nemesis and Spinball whizzer, Smiler, Wickerman and Rita were around 10-15 minutes.
Masks are required in all indoor areas and they do request you wear them on the rides too. All the staff were great loading and unloading carts quickly to keep the queues moving, hand gel and spare masks were available for those who (like my husband) break theirs or if you lose it whilst on a ride.
Food wise the Alton Towers Roller Coaster Restaurant is closed as per guidelines as it has no outside area, which is a shame as we do love it, so we opted for something quick at the stands opposite Rita (Hotdog for him, Nuggets and chips for me) it came to just under £11, no pass holder discount at these stands unfortunately but still pretty reasonable and it was tasty too!
We also had to keep up the tradition of grabbing pudding on the way out, I opted for the Chocolate fountain stand, strawberries and marshmallows covered in milk chocolate, again no discount but only £4 hubby grabbed 10 Doughnuts and a bottle of sprite £7.68 with our 20% pass holder discount (Doughnuts are £6 for 5 or £7 for 10 normal price)
The parks are only open till 4 but we left around 3 as we had to get back for the little ones, due to the lower capacity there wasn’t loads of people by the time we left and actually walked straight onto Spinball Whizzer on the way out!
Overall we had a great day and will be back very soon with the mini mes!