Swadlincote Snowsports Centre – day out review

If you’re looking for a truly unique day out in around Derbyshire or Leicestershire with the family, I cannot recommend Swadlincote Snowsports Centre enough.

Adults and children age four and above will be sure to leave with a smile on their faces after a visit here, with so many different activities to enjoy in one day, whether you’re after ideas for a daytrip, something to do at the weekend, in the school holidays, or even ideas for a birthday party.

Lily had truly the best day out at Swadlincote Snowsports Centre
Lily had truly the best day out at Swadlincote Snowsports Centre

Arrival & booking

Swadlincote Snowsports Centre reminds me of the dry ski slopes we visited as a kid – it looks like it could do with some updating, but in my mind that would ruin that nostalgic vibe, as it has everything you need for your visit.

There was everything you needed at the snowsports centre and all equipment was provided and cleaned between uses
There was everything you needed at the snowsports centre and all equipment was provided and cleaned between uses

We had meant to visit here back in April, just as lockdown 1 set in, so it was lovely to finally be there. We booked a four activity package on an adult and child ticket for their tobogganing, snow tubing, drop slide and a ski taster session, however the packages can be booked in any combination, whether you would like to do just one or all of the activities. We also used the 25% discount code that was on their website at the time of booking.

When we arrived, we were greeted by such a friendly member of staff, who checked our booking and let us know what timings we needed to be where. She was so lovely and helpful, very clearly explaining everything – such a great greeting, which makes a lovely start to the day!

Enjoying her ski taster session at Swadlincote Snowsports Centre
Enjoying her ski taster session at Swadlincote Snowsports Centre

We visited the toilets in the centre and then headed outdoors to the top of the snow tubing for our first activity.

Snow Tubing

Our first activity was the snow tubing, which Lily could not get enough of. We had a half-hour session at 11am, with one other family in our group.

Snow tubing involves sliding down the 70m slope in a rubber tube!
Snow tubing involves sliding down the 70m slope in a rubber tube!

The ski slope was cleared, and we spent the half hour sliding 70m down the slope on the rubber tubes. It was fantastic! Only one person was allowed on each tube, with children offered smaller ones as you cannot ride in the same one, but you can hold on to each other’s ring to go down together.

You definitely felt it climbing back up the slope again each time with your ring, but it really was fantastic. Children can take part from the age of 4 and I’d recommend taking a bottle of water with you as we were both thirsty by the end!

Her face says it all - fantastic fun!
Her face says it all – fantastic fun!

Tobogganing

The 500m toboggan track is just brilliant. Children age 4-7 must ride with an adult, then 8 and above have their own toboggan.

You start at the bottom of the track, where you settle into your toboggan, which is pulled to the top of the track – great for a little rest from climbing up with the snow tubes on the previous activity.

Video from the Swadlincote Snowsports Centre toboggan track

We had three runs with our ticket on the toboggan track. It is a metal track, and you can control the speed you go at with the brake lever on the toboggan, which is why under 8s have to ride with an adult. Adults can go on their own too if they’d like, as it really is fun for all the family!

There are clear signs around the track where you need to brake and on corners too, but it was so much fun!

Adults and children under 8 need to ride together
Adults and children under 8 need to ride together

Drop Slide

The drop slide was our next activity. Our tickets gave us 6 drops between myself and Lily, so three each.

Lily on the 70m drop slide
Lily on the 70m drop slide

It was way faster than I was expecting, but each person goes down on their own, or holding on to your family member’s ring, on the 70m, steeper zig-zag track! Another great fun activity!

Ski taster session

Our final session was the ski taster session. We were both booked on to this, however since Lily had never skied before, and I’d converted to snowboarding, it was more worth Lily joining in with it. The adults in the other family group joined in with the taster session with their two children, so it was just 6 of us in the group for the half hour.

Lily having her ski taster session on the nursery slope
Lily having her ski taster session on the nursery slope

We were kitted up with skis and boots, then led by Rob to the nursery slope, who explained everything and got the group used to their skis. The slope was only small and gentle, but was perfect for the taster and to give the group the feel of the skis.

The staff at the centre were fantastic throughout our visit - so friendly and helpful
The staff at the centre were fantastic throughout our visit – so friendly and helpful

Under current restrictions, instructors aren’t able to help when you fall over, so I was also glad to be on my feet to help Lily, but she absolutely loved it, and now wants to join the tots ski lessons (for 4-7 year olds) now at the centre!

Food and drink

Under tier 3 restrictions, they are not able to open up the Alpine bar upstairs for seating, however this is available in ‘normal’ times for hot and cold food and drinks.

You can buy hot drinks to take away from upstairs, as well as cold drinks and snacks (including festive biscuits!) from the downstairs reception area.

Taking a break with her Christmas tree biscuit!
Taking a break with her Christmas tree biscuit!

Conclusion

We had an absolutely fantastic time and were both grinning from ear to ear. It was lovely to have activities that we could both do together, so would be great for families with children with mixed ages or older children, as well as groups of friends too!

A tired but very happy face!
A tired but very happy face!

Lily definitely got her snow stoke, and the team were just so lovely to us throughout. We also felt so safe – even though there were different family groups arriving, the sessions were all limited with numbers, and the team were clearly making sure people weren’t congregating inside.

We will definitely be back – so thank you to the team at Swadlincote Snowsports Centre for a really lovely day out.

Hands up if you had fun at Swadlincote Snowsports Centre
Hands up if you had fun at Swadlincote Snowsports Centre

Tips and information for visiting

  • Children age 4-7 need to go on an adult ticket for the packages
  • Children age 8 and above can go on their own with their own ticket
  • Wrap up warm as you are outdoors, whatever the weather. We wore normal trousers with thick ski socks, waterproof gloves, hat, fleece, waterproof jackets, and plenty of layers on underneath.
  • Lily wore walking boots for the activities, aside from skiing, however you can wear trainers – just no open toe shoes.
  • Bring a drink or packed lunch with you, however you can pick up drinks and light snacks there, such as crisps and biscuits.
  • Keep an eye out on their social media or website for deals – we took advantage of their 25% off voucher.
There really is so much to do for a great day out with the family
There really is so much to do for a great day out with the family

Address and postcode

Swadlincote Snowsports Centre
Sir Herbert Wragg Way
Swadlincote
Derbyshire
DE11 8LP

For more information and for tickets, check out their website here

For clothing ideas for kids who love the outdoors, including some of the items Lily is wearing, check out our post on gift ideas for kids who love the outdoors here.

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