There’s nothing quite like the kids waking you up at 5:30 on the first morning of the school holidays. So much for lie ins! This morning the excitement was too much to bear; we were heading off to have a swing in the trees at the Enchanted Adventure Garden. You may remember the last time we went, I was flung down a hill, backwards in a rubber tube, and sprayed with water, and ended up looking like a giant tumbleweed. Safe to say, I was a little apprehensive this morning, and praying I wasn’t going to be scaring any more children whilst this time hurtling through the canopy!
The temperature has dropped by about 20 degrees since about a week ago, and this morning was so chilly you could see your breath. We wrapped up, hopped in the car and headed for Arthurs Seat State Park with Barbie singing on full volume.
Once we had checked in, read the rules on the board, and sorted out our safety gear, we were introduced to our awesome Tree Surfing Master, Alex. I was so glad he was there to show us the ropes.. (haha show us the ropes… get it!! Sorry!)
We headed for the trees, harnesses, helmets, and full of energy. I was hoping the Nippers section wasn’t too high as I didn’t want to chicken out in front of the kids, especially as this is the smallest section of the Tree Surfing here at the Enchanted Gardens. Luckily, Alex put us all at ease, showed us exactly what we were supposed to do, and helped us on our way. The kids adored him, listened to him carefully, and as soon as the pep talk was over, we were off. Poppy was a little cautious along the ropes, but Monty was flying after about ten minutes. He was so fast in fact that he had to be swapped to the front of the group, so he could go ahead without us. I was at the back, a little nervous, but soldiering on. I know, go me!!!
Tree Surfing is one of those activities that you just have to nail as a parent. You can’t whatever you do, let your kids see your fear, or let them see you shaking behind them, eyes closed and crossed legged, because they just fall into heaps of giggles, and start pointing you out to other people. I was determined not to let that happen. I put all my trust in Alex. He assured me that we weren’t going to plop onto the ground below, and that the harness wouldn’t break even though I have gained a few kilos recently; so I just went for it. The harness was not the most attractive thing to wear, I’m sure I looked like a wobbly hippo up in the trees, but hey, I was safe, and that’s what’s important, right??!
The kids had a blast! They really did! Alex did his absolute best to encourage them to try different ways of getting across, or to let go and trust the rope, he definitely made our experience special. He really gave the kids the confidence they needed to get through level 1, 2, and 3, on their own, without calling my name every 30 seconds (YAY). There were tunnels, a flying carpet challenge, wobbly swinging poles (the kids loved this), scramble nets, a great zip-line; honestly, it was fun, challenging, exciting, and perfect for both my 8 and 4 year old!
The best thing by far was the way we all ended up working together, checking on each other and making sure we were all ok. I am so glad I got up in the trees with my two. I think it made the whole experience that bit better for them. They got to see me working hard to get across the wobbly swings, and through the (tiny) tube (which Alex was very helpfully swinging for me). It gave them confidence to see that they were far better than me. It really is something the whole family should do together. I know it’s so much easier to grab a coffee, and let them go off for an hour whilst you flick through Facebook, or chat with your friends, but if your kids are like mine, they’ll love seeing you make a fool of yourself, and enjoy seeing you finding things hard, that they’re finding easy. They’ll just love hanging out in the trees with you. Having said that, I think the kids cringed when they heard my excited squeals, and witnessed me hurtling into the pile of bark at the bottom of the Zip-line, face down; I had to pick little pieces of bark from my eyeballs for a few minutes. “Ohhhh muuuum!”
We had a ball, we all loved it, and the best thing was, it was the first time we had all supported each other through a really tricky task. Gushy I know, but usually I spend days out shouting at my two, swearing under my breath or screeching at them to behave, but today we all just had huge fun together and had a great big bear hug at the end; that was pretty special. Such a shame Mr W had to go to work!
Our experience today wouldn’t have been half as awesome without the incredible staff at the Enchanted Gardens. We were greeted with smiles and “hello’s”, Tilly made us feel really welcome when we were checking in, and Alex was an absolute legend! And yes Alex, you do sound very much like Madame Gazelle from Peppa Pig, which kinda makes you even cooler in our eyes!!
The Enchanted Adventure Gardens – The Home of Tree Surfing
Opening Hours- Click here
Tickets – Book Here
Contact – 55 Purves Road
Arthur’s Seat VIC 3936
Tel – 03 5981 8449
Email – firstname.lastname@example.org