I was thrilled because the school holidays were approaching and I thought this would be a terrific outing for my little guy but Alfie was even more thrilled because he just loves climbing and ropes and flying foxes and trapezes and basically everything the park has to offer.
As the park is in the very west of Sydney we chose a day that wasn’t going to be too hot. It took us around an hour to drive there having to go on all the toll roads like the entry onto the Warringah Freeway, Lane Cove tunnel, M2 and M7 with the round trip costing more than $22.00 in tolls. The saying, ‘highway robbery’ isn’t for no good reason.
We drove into the park and found a car space and the good news is, parking is unlimited and free. We walked several hundred metres to a shed-like structure that is Tree Top Adventure Park. A woman at the counter greeted us but when I produced my gift certificate she passed me onto the other chap working beside her.
He stepped forward and he is a guy who is clearly asserting his individuality with his matted hairdo and chunk of orange plastic stuck through his tongue so intrusively it was giving him a speech impediment. Never mind; that didn’t bother me, it was his other issue. He had a case of bad breath so bad it made my dogs’ issues seem mild. I took one step back from the counter but that wasn’t drastic enough and so I took another step backwards.
He asked me if I had booked.
‘No, I didn’t know you needed to book’.
‘Well we’re very busy as it’s the school holidays and so it’s very important to book’.
‘I didn’t see that on your website’. The information is actually there on their website but it’s not on the front page. You have to do some clicking around to find it.
‘Will you both be climbing?’
‘Yes, we want to climb together’.
‘Okay, then you’ll need to fill out this form’. And he handed me the paperwork and I had to fill out Alfie’s details. When I handed it back to him he said, ‘We can’t get you in until 1.30, is that okay?’ And I calculated that we had a two-hour wait.
‘Yes, that’s okay, we’ll just go to the playground then come back at 1.30’.
‘Oh, hang on’, he said checking my form, ‘I thought your son was older. He’ll have to do the children’s climb because he’s not 10’.
‘But he’s over 140cms and the website says if you’re over a hundred and forty you can do the junior climb’.
‘No’, he smiled as I took another step back, ‘You have to be 10 and you have to be more than 140cms’. I don’t understand. If you are 10cms taller than the minimum height, why can’t you do the junior course?
‘Okay, we’ll do the children’s climb’.
Then looking at me he said, ‘But you won’t be able to climb. We don’t allow adults on the children’s course’.
‘So would I have to be in a different area?’
‘Okay, don’t worry, he’ll do the children’s climb and I’ll just stand around’.
‘Fine. But we’re really booked out so he won’t be able to climb until 3pm, is that okay?’ Is it okay for us to sit around for the next four hours with nothing to do.
‘No, that’s not okay, we’ll leave it’.
So I can’t tell you what the Treetop Adventure Park is like because I didn’t get past the front desk.
Alfie and I walked over to the playground where he played for an hour or so then we found a cafe where we bought a drink then we got into the car and drove 65kms home again.
For anyone wanting to visit Tree Top Adventure Park, don’t go unless you’ve made a booking; don’t expect to climb with your child if they’re under 10 years of age and even if they’re 150cms tall (5ft); and understand that if your child is doing the children’s course, you won’t be climbing with them and if you’re doing the junior course, your children under 10 won’t be with you.
Verdict: It was such an ordeal to get there and then to have the rule book thrown at me by a guy with such bad halitosis I couldn’t be within three feet of him made this a very disappointing outing. I’m not sure I’ll ever be back.
Tree Top Adventure Park: Plough & Harrow Estate, Western Sydney Parklands. Ph: 02 8605 4300
Child 3-9 years: $25
Junior 10-17: $35
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