Over the last month, Dreamland Imaginarium has been welcoming families into a world of pure imagination at Manchester’s Regent Retail Park. The colourful, interactive world, which is just an hour’s drive away from us, is aimed at children aged 1–7, and brings to life elements from the realms of their imagination.
While an abundance of sights, sounds, scents and texture are incorporated throughout the Imaginarium’s four zones to encourage development in a fun way, the team have recently announced more relaxed sessions for those with sensory needs to feel less overwhelmed; these will be on February 3 and 10 – tickets for this session are available here. During the more relaxed sessions, Dreamland Imaginarium will be run at a lower capacity with lower sound, more suitable for those with special educational needs or those who would feel more comfortable.
What can I expect at a Dreamland Imaginarium standard session?
Escape reality for an hour in Dreamland Imaginarium’s different zones: Dreams of Flight, Underwater Enchantment, Monster’s Midway, and Fantastical Flora. In the Dreams Of Flight room, your child(ren) will be able to ‘fly’ with birds in a game that uses technology and motion sensors to trigger a surprise. Elsewhere in the room, they’ll be able to encourage chameleons to change colour, and engage in conversation with the illuminated cactus that repeats speech.
Amidst light changing jellyfish and the colossal limbs of ‘Olly the Octopus’, you’ll find a ball pit in Underwater Enchantment, filled with shimmering ‘pearls’, where your little ones can test their colour and number skills in an interactive game. And who doesn’t love bubbles? The coral sprays bubbles out at the touch of a button. The room is also home to a sensory wall, magnetic coral garden, and 3D wire puzzle game, like those from our own childhoods.
Over at Monster’s Midway, get moving on the dance floor (parents permitted, and dad dancing actively encouraged!); a multi-eyed monster will play upbeat tunes at your child’s comlbad (well, button press). Alternatively, the room boasts a huge monster bounce park slide, neon game of Twister, and a basketball-style, monster-feeding game. In fact, there are plenty of opportunities for them to get competitive with games designed to support the development of fine motor skills.
Fantastical Flora is the central point of Dreamland Imaginarium, and boasts a cafe, gift shop and inflatable play space for toddlers – all the while living up to its name with an abundance of verdant greenery. Younger kids can listen to the singing snail or make their own story on the felt board, while older children can embark on a scavenger hunt in this world. There are rumours of adults-only evenings coming here soon too.