Inside the UK theme park free to visit with terrifying rollercoasters

THIS Saturday was no ordinary one.

I was on an Odyssey to the top of a volcano with my Guardian, swirling and twirling high above the ground before plummeting back down at a terrifying speed.

Fantasy Island in Ingoldmells is an award-winning theme park with more than 30 rides

Fantasy Island in Ingoldmells is an award-winning theme park with more than 30 ridesCredit: Maria Rispoli
It knocks some of its bigger rivals into a cocked hat

It knocks some of its bigger rivals into a cocked hat

Believe it or not, this isn’t a tale of derring-do from Greek legend. No, this is just a day on the Lincolnshire coast.

More specifically, this is Fantasy Island in Ingoldmells — an award-winning theme park with more than 30 rides.

And let me tell you this, it knocks some of its bigger rivals into a cocked hat.

The top draw for my eight-year-old lad Jack (and me, if I’m being honest) was Millennium, a 150ft-high, rollercoaster that hurls you along two vertical loops and a sidewinder at 56mph.

It provided some of the most traumatic and the most exhilarating moments of our stay. Traumatic because at Jack’s first attempt he got the jitters as he didn’t like the claustrophobic feeling of the safety restraints.

But the exhilaration came the next day when he put his fear to one side and had the time of his life on it. So much so that he went on the ride a total of 12 times during our weekend visit.

This was one of the biggest joys of the place. Even the longest queues were never really more than a half-hour wait.

Ten to 15 minutes was about the average and sometimes you can hop off a ride and get straight to the front of it again for another go. Perfect for a youngster with a thirst for thrills.

Other highlights include Odyssey, a terrifying 167ft, 62mph loop-the-loop that is not for the faint-hearted. I loved it.

Or you can feel the full force of a volcanic eruption on Volcano as it shoots you 183ft into the air at 50mph.

The views up there are incredible — not that you’ll have much time to enjoy them before you come plummeting back down to Earth.

But if you do want to spend a little time savouring the panorama, have a go on the StarFlyer. The swing carousel stands close to 230ft tall and you can see for miles around on a good clear day.

The latest big addition to Fantasy Island is The Guardian, an immersive experience ride where you’re transported into a medieval era with castles and dragons and you’re on a quest to save the war-torn world from invading monsters.

Those are just a selection of the rides for thrill-seeking bigger kids and adults who refuse to grow up.

But there is plenty of ordinary pier attractions too, from log flumes and river rapids, to smaller rollercoasters and chair-o-planes.

And if you want a break from the rides, have a look inside the entertainment pyramid in the middle of the park with an adventure golf course and ten-pin bowling — or you can just blow some pocket money in the arcades.

You won’t need to venture off-site for decent grub either. There are more than 40 places to eat, selling hot dogs, burgers, chips, ice creams, strawberries dipped in liquid chocolate — the usual theme park fare.

Tuck in while you wander around Fantasy Island’s seven-day market — the largest of its kind in Europe with more than 300 stalls offering everything from clothes and bags to jewellery and seaside tat.

I’ll be honest, a day at a theme park is an exhausting old time. So what could be better than having to drag your weary bodies a mere 45 metres to your accommodation?

Our home for the weekend was a spacious Platinum six-berth lodge with Eastgate Rentals — quite literally in the shadow of StarFlyer, Odyssey and Millennium.

Jack really did have a room with a view and spent ages staring out of the window at the rollercoasters right in front of him.

But what really sets it apart and makes for the most relaxing evening is the hot tub. There’s no better way to mellow that adrenaline than a long soak in the bubbles — turn those jets up to high and blast away the strains of the day.

You will sure be in need of the downtime if you’re doing it all again the next day!

GO: FANTASY ISLAND

SELF-CATERING holiday homes, sleeping up to six or eight people, are available from £290 for three nights. Every holiday includes four wristbands, with unlimited adventure golf and ten-pin bowling. Wristband-only packages for the theme park cost from £12.

See fantasyislandresort.co.uk

Our home for the weekend was a spacious Platinum six-berth lodge with Eastgate Rentals

Our home for the weekend was a spacious Platinum six-berth lodge with Eastgate Rentals
Skegness is a long-established British holiday hotspot

Skegness is a long-established British holiday hotspotCredit: Alamy