Flamingo Land Resort Opening Weekend 2023 - Let's Discuss!
Flamingo Land Resort near Malton, North Yorkshire finally reopened their theme park this weekend.
Yorkshire’s premier theme park resort and zoo which remains highly popular with families throughout the year reopened their major rides and attractions this weekend for the first time this year.
Having last paid a visit to our home park back in September of last year, we decided to head on back yesterday (Sunday March 26th) and it’s fair to say we had a wonderful time.
But what changes can you expect from Flamingo Land this year? And what new additions have they added? Let’s discuss.
New Changes for 2023!
In reality given how BIG last year was for Flamingo Land it was very unlikely we were going to see any major new changes or additions this season.
What we did see yesterday however was quite a bit more than we first expected given the amount they’ve likely spent over the last few years.
Brand new wrought iron fences outside Kumali, the full removal of the roof covering Lost River Ride’s final drop and a complete refresh of paintwork in many sections of the park were just some of the newest additions for this year.
Now, we know what you’re probably thinking – why is this such a big deal right? Well, making subtle changes and looking after the park’s overall appearance proves how dedicated Flamingo Land are to improving guest experience as a whole.
There were however parts of the park such as the area surrounding both Flip Flop and Splash Battle that still need a lot of love and attention paying to them.
The other thing we noticed (and continue to notice) is how much Kumali is in desperate need of a new lick of paint.
The ride looks very tired and shabby in comparison to the rest of Flamingo Land’s major roller coasters now (it also felt far from smooth yesterday too? Must be a different train).
It’s not all negative though. The introduction of an expansive new flamingo enclosure at the base of Lost River Ride’s lift hill is a refreshing new sight and includes 2 picnic plaza areas as well as an indoor viewing platform (which is yet to be opened due to the ongoing bird flu epidemic).
One of the final major changes we noticed for this year is the relocation of SIK’s ride camera to the first of the ride’s four iconic heartline rolls.
SIK’s ride camera original took your photo during exiting the second corkscrew, however the new angle appears to allow for some much better on ride photos.
Let's Talk Ride Availability & Reliability.
As much as experiences of this appear to be very mixed over the past weekend, yesterday proved very successful for us where getting on all major rides and roller coasters was concerned.
Not only did we manage to grab rides on ALL major roller coasters within the first hour to hour and a half of being at Flamingo Land, however we also managed plenty of re-rides too.
Our five rides on SIK throughout the day was definitely our highlight with each feeling faster and far more intense than the last.
We also managed two rides on Kumali (which as stated previously felt much rougher than last year), a ride on Mumbo Jumbo (just as smooth as ever), 2 rides on Cliffhanger (the launch felt slightly toned down in comparison to last season too) and even had a great ride on Velocity (again, it felt much faster than usual and very smooth too).
We also braved the dreaded Hero for our annual ride (and yes, big mistake but had to be done!).
Overall as far as we could tell the only rides closed appeared to be most of the ones in Dinostone, The Lost River Ride & The Daktari Express.
Other than that, we experienced no issues or downtime what so ever throughout our visit (and yes, that may be hard to believe but we can assure you it’s true).
The only slight issue we would raise would be the slow nature of operations throughout the day given how long it took some of our experiences to start, however again we would put this down to how quiet Flamingo Land was throughout our visit.
Let's talk about the staff!
Admittedly over the past year or so our experience with some of Flamingo Land’s staff have been very mixed indeed, however yesterday was a refreshing start to the year.
All staff throughout our visit made us feel very welcome and remained incredibly attentive and polite throughout the full duration of our day.
Their attitude towards us remained welcoming and we were constantly asked how our day was going, whether there was anything else we needed or if everything was okay.
In our opinion as great as the rides and attractions can be it’s ultimately the attitude of the staff towards their customers that can ultimately make or break your experience of a place.
Flamingo Land killed it yesterday though and there wasn’t one instance during our full visit were we felt wronged or ill treated in any way.
Long may it continue!
Other Changes & New Additions.
As much as Flamingo Land have done their upmost to prepare the park for it’s grand reopening this weekend gone, there were also a few new additions we didn’t expect to see.
Whilst Rob had us all gripped with his witty comedy and escapology, the roaming street theatre from V.I.P Puppets had us mesmerised.
The realistic nature of the puppets and those animating them felt very authentic to the animal (in this case a Mari the zebra) being portrayed.
We were also rather amused to see someone in a full tree costume which felt very reminiscent of a hybrid mix between Groot from Guardians of the Galaxy and an Ent from Lord of the Rings (a walking talking tree).
Other subtle changes included the general cleaning of ride areas, the removal of Cooplands from Flamingo Land entirely and the inclusion of new digital ride queue time screens at the entrance to most of Flamingo Land’s major roller coasters.
Let's Talk Food & Drink!
Finally, before we wrap things up and offer our final thoughts on our first visit of the year to Flamingo Land Resort, let’s talk food & drink.
During our visit we paid a visit to the park’s onsite pub/restaurant at the top of the zoo – The Coach House (for our compulsory chicken parmo), a visit to Waffle Meister next to Velocity and a visit Muddy Duck Cafe for a well earned hot cup of coffee.
All food and drink served to us felt consistently high in standard and tasted absolutely great.
Although we admit it did feel a little on the pricey side (especially at The Coach House), we can;t deny the food was delicious and never failed to hit the spot.
The waffles did however taste a tad over cooked and could have been a little fresher than they were for the price we paid.
Our coffee was spot on though and tasted great after coming in from the cold and the rain outside.
Out of all the places we have eaten at theme parks over the years here in the UK The Coach House remains our favourite place overall.
The service is great, the food and drink is always top quality and the atmosphere is both pleasant and relaxing as a whole.
We can’t recommend paying them a visit enough!
Let's Wrap This Up!
This weekend’s return visit to Flamingo Land was both much needed and incredibly pleasant overall.
We enjoyed plenty of rides due to the how quiet the park actually was (with most if not all rides being walk on), we felt very welcomed by the staff (they were fantastic) and we loved getting back on some of our favourite rides and roller coasters here in the North on the whole.
Although of course there is still room for improvement where moving forwards into 2023 is concerned, Flamingo Land (and all those behind the scenes) helped to deliver one of their best opening weekends in quite some time.
We can’t wait to see what this year has instore for them and as such we look forward to making plenty of return visits over the coming months.
Will you be visiting Flamingo Land this year? If so, be sure to let us know when in the comments below!
Thank you very much for reading.