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Review February Half Term at Alton Towers – Pirate Takeover

Alton Towers February Half Term
15 Feb 2024

Alton Towers Pirate Takover is back for the February half term and you can check out everything you need to know in our review.

The Staffordshire theme park has opened its gates for the half term, bringing back its popular Pirate Takeover. 

Running from the 10th to the 25th of February 2024, the event sees Mutiny Bay and Towers Street turn into a pirate’s dream with themed entertainment, activities and more. Plus this year CBeebies Land will be joining in the fun.

Tickets will cost just £15.00 per person and children under 90cm are free.

One of On The Go Reviewers, Gemma and her family recently visited the event and you discover what she thought and some tips below. 

Review Pirate Take Over at Alton Towers

characters Pirate Takeover Alton Towers Half Term

We are big fans of Alton Towers and have been numerous times since the kids (currently 11 and 14) were little. However having never stayed at any of the hotels or visited their water park, we decided to book their February half-term hotel offer as a little treat. 

The package included a night in Splash Landing Hotel, breakfast, tickets to the Splash Landing Waterpark, 9 hole game of mini golf and entry to the Pirate Takeover event at the Alton Towers theme park. 

Here is what we thought of the event and our top tips. 

Arrival and Parking 

Pirate Takeover Map Alton Towers Half Term

On booking, we were originally allocated entry to the pirate event on our first day. However, knowing that the kids would be dying to check out the water park as soon as we arrived we decided to swap it to our second day.  

Alton Towers is a 10-minute walk from the hotel and day car parks. Although there is a monorail this was not running on the day we attended.

Having visited many times before we know from experience that the park is generally quieter the earlier you arrive. Our February was no exception, as we arrived at the opening time of 10.00 am and walked straight in with no queue. 

Pirate Takeover Rides and Activities 

As soon as we arrived we were greeted with lots of pirate-themed decorations and a map of the event. 

We decided to head straight to Mutiny Bay which is where most of the Pirate Takeover activities were taking place.

Here were greeted by pirates two jolly pirates who handed us a treasure map and a themed pen. One side of the map has details of the rides open and activities in store and space to get stamps once you complete each.

Stamps Pirate Takeover Alton Towers Half Term

The other side contained the Pieces of Eight Treasure Hunt and it was explained that we needed to go around each of the activity stations to collect letters that we then needed to decode a word and claim the treasurer at the end.

For younger children, they had separate maps with the task of collecting numbers after completing easier activities. 

The Pirate Takeover Rides

munity Bay Marauder's Mayem ride Alton Towers Half Term

It is only the rides in Mutiny Bay that are open over the February half-term. These include Heave Ho a pirate ship ride which spins in every way imaginable, which my 11-year-old loved. 

Marauder’s Mayem, where you sit inside barrels which move around each other and you can spin using the wheel in the middle – think somewhere in the middle of teacups and the waltzers in terms of speed. 

Mutiny Bay Ride Pirate Takeover Alton Towers Half Term

And Battle Galleons, where you ride a pirate ship around the Mutiny Bay Seas and usually squirt water from the cannons at the other boats.

However, during the event, the ride is part of the treasure hunt where your pirate guide helps you complete tasks to find the letter, with lots of pirate puns and jokes along the way (arming my husband with lots of new dad jokes!)

The Pieces of Eight Treasure Hunt. 

Treasure Hunt Pirate Takeover Alton Towers Half Term

As mentioned the treasure map given at the entrance features The Pieces of Eight Treasure Hunt. Here you will find a list of activities you need to complete.

The activities include manoeuvering a cannonball into barrels, finding a hidden letter amongst a barrel of fish, learning how to do the pirate dance, and lots more. 

We all enjoyed the treasure hunt activities. Although my 14-year-old was reluctant to take part at first after the initial few activities he got stuck in and even did the pirate dance. 

free trearts Pirate Takeover Alton Towers Half Term

Once we had completed all the activities and decoded the word, we headed to the last station where the kids were each rewarded a treasure bag. 

The bag contained a plastic gold coin, chocolate bars and an Alton Towers key ring. 

Pirate Takeover Entertainment. 

Entertainment Pirate Takeover Alton Towers Half Term

Along with the treasure hunt, the Pirate Takeover event includes two fun shows: Captain Finn Training Camp and The Pirate of Mutiny Bay The Hunt For The Crown of T’Hulu.

We took a break from the treasure hunt and watched the Hunt For The Crown of T’Hulu. Akin to a pirate panto it featured lots of songs, pirate puns and jokes and was lots of fun.  

The shows are repeated throughout the day and the audience seats are undercover. Great place for a little sit-down with snacks  or lunch. 

Sharkbait Reef Sealife 

SEALIFE Alton Towers

Mutiny Bay is also home to the Sharkbait Reef SEALIFE Centre which is open over half term.

A small aquarium, it has hands-on exhibitions and daily talks. The main attraction is a walk-through tunnel where you can spot the resident sharks and rays swimming overhead.  

Shark Tunnel SEALIFE Alton Towers

We spent around 20 minutes looking around and was a nice way to get out of the rain. 

CBeebies Land During February Half Term

CBeebies Land Alton Towers

Along with Mutiny Bay, CBeebies Land is also open during the February half-term.

If you’ve never been to CBeebies Land it features rides and attractions based around popular CBeebies characters. It is ideal for children from ages 1 to 6 years old.

Although my 11 and 14-year-old are a bit too old for this area they were happy to have a look around. 

Queue Times CBeebies Land Alton Towers

We headed to CBeebies Land around 12.00 pm and it seemed quite busy. Popular rides such as Get Set Go Tree Top Adventures and Octonauts Rollercoaster Adventure had queue times of 40 to 70 minutes. 

A couple of rides, Bugbie Go Round and Go Jetters ride were closed during our visit. 

If you want a break from the queuing there are free-flow areas such as the Something Special Sensory Garden and the Hey Duggee Big Adventure Badge playground.

Big Show Fun Time CBeebies Land Alton Towers

You can also visit Big Fun Showtime, where there are a variety of garden games. Plus you can catch Teletubbies, Bing and Hey Duggie live shows at various times throughout the day.  

Food Available at Alton Towers

Food CBeebies Land Alton Towers

Alton Towers allow packed lunches to be brought into the park. However, if you would like to purchase lunch or snacks there are various options available over half term.

On Towers Street, Tower’s Street Hot Dogs was open. Here they serve hot dogs from £7.15, fries from £3.25 and a range of hot drinks. 

Corner Coffee is also open here which serves a Costa Costa coffee menu, including cakes, sandwiches and toasties. 

In Mutiny Bay we spotted Burger Kitchen (burgers and fries) and Easter Express (hot kebab wraps). Both were serving hot food costing around £8 to £9 for a main or £12 to £13 as a meal deal.

The popular Mutiny Bay Donuts was also offering up their mini hot doughnuts. 

If none of those options take your fancy Little Explorers Lunchbbox in Cbeebies Land also serves hot food. The menu includes jacket potatoes and various pastas from £3.25 for kids and £5.45 for adults and 9″ pizzas for just £9.85.

They also offer toasted sandwiches for £5.45 and a kids meal deal for £5.50. The meal includes a kid’s sandwich, kids pasta or half a jacket potato, a kids snack and a drink.  

Gift Shops 

Mutiny Bay Gift Shop Alton Towers Half Term

For those who like to take a memento from your day Alton Towers gift shops are open.

The shop in Mutiny Bay is located outside of the SEALIFE Centre. They had a variety of sea creature plush toys and pirate novelties such as patches and hooks starting at £3.00.

Gift Shop CBeebies Land Alton Towers

In CBeebies Land, the Little Explorers Toy shop has a variety of CBeebies character merchandise. Prices start at £1.50 for reward chart stickers. You can also pick up a CBeebies Bug plush which starts at £10.50.

The gift shop on Towers Street at the entrance to Alton Towers was also open. This sells a variety of sweets and a variety of Alton Towers ride-themed gifts.

How Long Can You Spend at Alton Towers Pirate Takeover?

We spent around two hours at Mutiny Bay. However, we could have easily spent more time here watching the second show, having lunch and re-riding rides.  

We also only had a quick look around CBeebies Land.  However, if you intend to spend time there there is plenty to do with the rides and shows for a full day. 

What We Thought About The Half-Term Event At Alton Towers

With older kids and most of Alton Towers theme park closed, I have to admit that we only booked the hotel package for the Splash Landing Waterpark. Only heading over to the Pirate Takeover event at the theme park as the tickets were included.

I have to say it was much better than expected.

Although my 14-year-old was reluctant to start both he and my 11-year-old,  really enjoyed the treasure hunt, Mutiny Bay rides and the SEALIFE Centre. My 11-year-old also loved the pirate show. 

Having said that I feel that families with younger children who would enjoy CBeebies Land would get the most out of a visit over half term.

If you have older children, unless you are planning to visit as part of a hotel package, it may be worth saving the visit for when the full park is open.

Top Tips For Visiting The Pirate Takeover at Alton Towers

Pirate Activities Takeover Alton Towers Half Term

Arrive Early 

Make sure you arrive for the park opening for the shortest queues for getting in and for rides. 

The general parking is around a 10-minute walk away so you need to account for this. 

Head To CBeebies Land First 

If you plan to go into CBeebies Land head there first rather than Mutiny Bay. The queues are quieter the earlier you go and it generally gets busier as the day goes on.

It is also worth heading to the more popular rides first. These include Get Set Go Tree Top Adventures, In The Night Garden Magical Boat Ride and Octonauts Rollercoaster Adventure.

Don’t Miss The Treasure Hunt 

Even if you are just heading to Alton Towers just for CBeebies Land it is still worth heading over to the Mutiny Bay.

The pirate activities are lots of fun and the show was great for little one. Plus the kids will get a nice bag full of treats at the end of the treasure hunt. 

Download The Alton Towers App 

Alton Towers has its own app which you can download before your visit and upload your tickets to. 

The app features queue times and show details. Plus you will find maps of the park to make sure you don’t miss anything.

Dress For The Weather 

Even if the weather seems mild when setting off, Alton Towers is fully in the open and can get quite chilly. It is therefore worth wrapping up and taking waterproofs. 

For more information about February Half Term at Alton Towers see here. 

Read >>> What’s On February Half Term In Manchester 

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