COVID-19 safety update
Due to COVID-19 there may be extra safety rules, pre-booking requirements or one-way systems in place. Please check Cadbury World’s website before travelling or booking.
Who we are and when we visited:
Janet Martin is mum to two children aged 7 & 9 and a proud great-aunt too. Janet began writing early penning her first book aged just 7. She has published 2 books on the topics of women’s empowerment and mental health. Her writing skills were finally tuned authoring PR material, advertisements and even radio scripts for musicians of many genres. Her family love a staycation, often venturing to the Midlands and beyond.
When we visited:
Along with her hubby the family visited Cadbury World during the school summer holidays on a hot, sunny mid-weekday. They drove direct from London leaving early in the morning.
What age is this venue best for:
- Best for: Children aged 4-11 years old
- Still good fun for: Older siblings & parents
- Avoid if: With a group of (pre) teens
How much does Cadbury World cost in 2022?
By booking online you can take advantage of the 5% discount. After discount adult tickets cost £19.95 each and 4-15 year olds cost £14.73 each. Under 4s are free.
You can save nearly £10 more with the online family of 4 offer (max 2 adults) which is £59.85. For a family of 5 (max 2 adults) the online prices is £72.20.
There’s also a promotion of up to 20% off by travelling National Rail to Bournville Station which is just 0.2miles away from the resort. This saving doesn’t apply to family tickets so you might want to compare before purchasing depending on your family size. There is a similar discount for those travelling by bus.
There is also a midweek adult and toddler offer. This deal includes entry for one adult and a child (0-4 years) but it’s a term time seasonal deal – so check the website. This can work out as a particularly good saving if you have a 4 year old.
These prices are all for the “self guided tour” which gives access to the inside walk-through museum-style experience, the rides and the outside activities. Not included are the afternoon tea experiences, any purchases (pre-ordered or on the day) or the café.
Once on site – it’s very hard to avoid the gift shop – it’s where you exit the experience. However a small £2-£5 budget per child should keep them happy as there are some really good deals to be found on chocolate bars, stationary and sweets. Although there is a café, you can also save by bringing a packed lunch.
How long will we spend at Cadbury World?
Our family arrived at 10:00am and left at 2:15pm. We didn’t make it to some of the further out attractions & landmarks that are part of the Bournville Heritage Walk. Given we didn’t participate in everything we could easily have made it a longer day or even returned for a different experience.
If it had not been so busy we would have stayed longer as my youngest loved the playground and could have spent more time there. We would have maybe had a second try of the 4D cinema too if there was less of a queue.
If like us you’re traveling longer than a 2-hour drive, I would recommend an overnight stay and perhaps another local attraction to make it a staycation. Legoland Discovery Centre and Drayton Manor are perfect additional days out if you’re not local.
What’s it like for families?
Cadbury World has been around since 1990 so a few parents or carers may have visited a while ago and are now able to take their own children. It’s a popular destination in the Midlands with a well-deserved reputation Cadbury’s chocolate to life as a leisure experience.
For any UK based family – or even overseas visitors – it’s a worthwhile addition to the travel itinerary because of the unique and memorable experience.
Formerly visitors would have experienced a factory tour until health & safety no longer allowed this. Fear not, your inner Charlie (of chocolate factory fame) will not be disappointed. There are several zones covering historical facts, hands-on practical activities, play areas, a show and most importantly lots of chocolate to eat.
Spread out over a large campus with several buildings and outdoor areas to explore, Cadbury World makes the most of its historic Bournville location. Beyond the child friendly days out style attractions are historical buildings and landmarks that are important parts of the Cadbury family history & legacy.
The self-guided style visit allows visitors to explore the campus in the order they desire – however the main inside attraction accessed through the reception, operates on timed pre-booked sessions to help with the flow of footfall. What you do before or after your timed session is up to you.
Most of the attraction takes place inside/under covered zones so can be enjoyed in all weather. However the playground is best enjoyed during dry weather. At first, I did feel a little disorientated and unsure what to expect but it soon became clear; explore & have fun.
The many zones offer a range of experiences and include; Aztec Jungle, Bull Street, Manufacturing, Have a Go & Green Screen, Cadabra and The World’s Biggest Cadbury Shop!
What shouldn’t be missed?
The highlight for our family were:
- Being given more chocolate than we knew what to do with! A lovely surprise upon arriving at our allocated time was a range of Cadbury classics to munch on as we moved through the building. There are bags for sale if you need somewhere to put it all.
- The chocolate writing experience – a favourite for the kids who loved being able to write their names and doodle using a chocolate filled dispenser on a marble countertop. The chocolate is not suitable for eating but I did catch my oldest unable to resist the urge!
- The Freddo’s Festival of Fun show – resort style family entertainment that was interactive and laugh-out-loud funny. It reminded me of package holiday shows – good, clean, kid friendly and got them up on their feet to interact with the host. On the day of our visit, there were showtimes every half hour between 11:30am and 4pm.
Is there anything else to see or do?
The 4D Chocolate Adventure is outside the main building near the play area. It features motions, effects and 3D cinema and you must wear special 3D glasses. It was fun and had the kids squealing and grabbing for the floating chocolate! We made this our first stop during our visit and were able to avoid the long queue that grows as the day progresses. It opened at 10am with the last show at 5:30pm (by which time queues may well be shorter).
Are there any scary/boring elements that young or sensitive children might not enjoy?
There are some dark periods in the cinema – this is mentioned on signs before you enter. Also, on the Cadabra– an indoor theme park ride there are some darker corners, twists and turns. However, my youngest who still occasionally gets spooked was totally fine on Cadabra.
Does it cater well to children of all ages?
Absolutely. In fact, everyone is catered for – Cadbury World is easily one of the most inclusive venues I’ve ever been too. The outdoor play area is well designed with padded floor. There are plenty of ramps for pushchairs. In the indoor screening room, it’s made clear where the exits are if your little one is not in the mood to sit & watch.
What to bring:
As there can be a lot of ground to cover – I would suggest bringing the pushchair for younger children or those who may need to rest. There are plenty of ramps & a lift if you do bring the buggy. You’ll also appreciate a large buggy basket to stash all the chocolate!
There’s a large and comfortable nursing room next to the main reception. All facilities are very inclusive, I was happy to see sign language provided at the large audio-visual displays.
A picnic is a nice option too, I chose to bring my own salad and the kids enjoyed the pizza from the café. There’s spacious, covered picnic seating near the play area. And more covered picnic seating next to the café.
We bought our own water bottles, and I was happy to see filling stations. We didn’t bring any snacks and the free chocolate and deals in the gift shop were more than enough to tide everyone over.
What are the queues like?
For our scheduled time slot entry, the queue was less than 10 minutes. There was a large crowd when we arrived which was worrying – but people were asked to wait to the side and only enter at their allocated time which meant we could pass them.
The only other notable queue was for the 4D Chocolate Adventure which was about 30-40 minutes later in the afternoon. Any other queues were barely noticeable, as time slots were allocated in the main building – it allowed for a good flow through the indoor attractions.
How does it compare to similar attractions?
Cadbury World reminded me of Legoland Discovery Centre in Birmingham, just with a larger building and chocolate instead of Lego!
They both have different zones to explore, but Cadbury World has space to focus on the history and family story behind the brand. Cadbury World has a live show too which Legoland Discovery Centre doesn’t. They both offer great experiences which add a leisure element to what could have been a more flat museum/gallery type of venue.
What to watch out for:
The biggest hurdle I had to overcome was trying to visually imagine, before our visit, what to expect. Then, upon arrival, how to navigate the attraction.
There’s a map for the Bournville Heritage Walk – which I found on a board outside the main reception – however a similar map either available online or as a download would have been helpful before we arrived.
Now that I’ve experienced the attraction, I do feel that I would have headed straight for the 4D Chocolate Adventure (to beat the queues!), let the kids burn off some car trip energy in the play area, then headed inside for my allocated slot. It certainly seemed that the earlier in the day you arrive the better — especially during school holidays.
What are the food and drink facilities like?
The café is lovely and spacious inside with a covered outside area too. The menu is fun and varied, including items like paninis, jacket potatoes and kids meals (Nuggets meal £6.30). I noted some nutritious and vegan options too.
There’s also a snack bar within the café offering smaller bites such as sausage rolls and a cold kids meal (Sandwich meal £5.80). Prices are what I would expect for this type of venue where you expect to pay more than at a supermarket.
Outside near the play area there’s an ice cream stand selling packaged & scoops of ice cream and hot & cold drinks. A 500ml bottle of water was £1.85.
Can you take a picnic?
Picnics are allowed and I noted some very nice areas to set up. The one outside is probably best if you don’t want the kids tempted by all the options in the café.
What are the toilets like?
The main reception toilets were impressive. A lot of thought had gone into ensuring the facilities are inclusive – which is great to see. I didn’t experience any queues for the toilets, and they seemed well positioned and very clean inside.
The loos even had nice little touches like splash-shaped mirrors above the sinks. You immediately felt comfortable when entering them – especially with the bright colours to match the Cadbury theme.
Is it pushchair friendly?
I would say the venue is definitely pushchair and wheelchair friendly. There were a few wheelchairs and loads of pushchairs on the day we visited. The slopes looked wide and well angled. The 4D Chocolate Adventure included, wheelchair seating area, non-moving chairs, a buggy park area and there were other similarly thoughtful accommodations throughout the venue.
How well does Cadbury World cater for visitors with disabilities and additional needs?
Probably one of the most clearly inclusive venues I’ve visited! This included lots of ramps, British Sign Language guides, gender neutral baby change facilities and nice wide aisles. Wheelchairs are available to borrow from reception.
Carers can go free (with proof of eligibility) and guide dogs are welcome except in the production areas. However Cadbury World provide assistance dog sitting service with a member of their staff while you visit the production areas.
Throughout the venue there are also inclusive elements for the visually and hearing impaired.
The 3rd area in the outdoor play zone African Adventure, is wheelchair friendly and has low level interactive elements.
What to do before you go:
The website features great photos to get kids excited before the visit. For those with wheelchairs, there’s a dedicated website page to get a look at the ramps and also plan for your visit.
I would advise having a good look around for the best deals, as it can add up quickly during school holidays.
Opening dates and times:
Opening times are seasonal. There is a dedicated page on the website and it’s advised to check times before visiting. Extended hours are typically during the school holidays and weekends with the venue opening at 9am.
Is it worth a long car journey?
It was a long car journey for us from London, but totally worth it. We stayed at a local hotel and made the most of the kid friendly attractions in The Midlands.
How to get there:
The sat nav postcode is B30 1JR and cars enter through the same entrance, around the main reception and then into the car park.
It’s free parking – with adequate space for all – however it does fill up as the day progresses.
We arrived early but the parking spaces in front of the main entrance were already filled up. It was still a very short walk from our parking space to the reception area. The car park is well positioned to dive straight into a day of fun!
Alternatively, Bournville Station is a 15-minute stroll from the venue for those travelling by train. There are also local buses and even a canal that passes nearby.
Which hotels or holiday accommodation are near Cadbury World?
- Birmingham Strathallan Hotel is less than a 15 minute drive away from Cadbury World.
- Find family-friendly hotel deals near Cadbury World on Booking.com.
- For self-catering family breaks near to Cadbury World check out options on Vrbo.
Cadbury World is one of my favourite days out I’ve had with the kids, mainly because it was a very well planned and thoughtful experience – even quite premium in several areas. All needs have been taken into account to create a fun, inclusive, interactive and chocolate filled day for all! The kids were very happy throughout the day and clearly loved quite a few of the zones. Some areas they rushed through such as Advertising Avenue. However, the nostalgic TV commercials clearly resonated more with the grownups in this zone. We all enjoyed the chocolate and it was great that it was so plentiful. Writing this review I found very little not to like.