Family Guide to Dreamworld – Review
Dreamworld on the Gold Coast, Australia is a place of contrasts. There are adrenaline-fuelled rides perfect for most teenage boys, and at the other end of the scale are toddler-taming activities thanks to Captain Feathersword and friends. There are agile tigers to watch, koalas to cuddle, crocodiles and kangaroos to feed. We’ve got it all covered for you in our Dreamworld review.
At Dreamworld you can learn how to make Indigenous weapons and traditional fire making, and five minutes later, be meeting the Penguins of Madagascar. There are out of this world waterslides that I could only have dreamed of when I was young, but now get to fly down with my boys. To top it all off, Dreamworld now houses Australia’s first and only LEGO store.
We set out to discover what Dreamworld on the Gold Coast has to offer families of boys and how you can make the most of your day. We found the best activities for each age group, what the whole family will love, and our top five tips to ensure a great day.
Best activities for under 6’s
Dreamworld does an amazing job catering to the youngest members of the family, with ABC Kids World bringing The Wiggles, Play School, Bananas in Pyjamas, and Giggle and Hoot out to play, with plenty of rides and activities to keep them happy.
Your little ones will also love to splash around at Wiggle Bay in Whitewater World, explore the new LEGO store and get up close to some of our Australian native wildlife.
Best activities for 6-12 year olds
The major highlights for the boys in the middle are interacting with the wild animals at Corroboree, seeing the tigers up close at Tiger Island, serious water fun at Whitewater World, a visit to the LEGO store, and the rides and characters at DreamWorks Experience.
Best activities for teenagers
If your teenager likes rides, then there is plenty here to keep them busy for more than a day. For some serious adrenaline hits there are the Big 9 Thrill Rides such as the Tower of Terror II, the Big Drop and Mick Doohan’s Motocoaster. They’ll love the Whitewater World slides, which range from tame to terrifying. And they’ll get to discover first hand the Corroboree Virtual Reality Experience, V8 Supercar Simulator and Zombie Evilution.
Best activities for the whole family
There is no point in going somewhere if the parents are going to be bored or left out. Thankfully there are some fantastic things to do at Dreamworld that will impress the whole family, no matter what age. Tiger Island and Corroboree sit at the top of the list and have plenty to keep everyone busy. If you don’t like animals this may be a problem, we’re sure there will be something you’ll love to do as a family.
If you want to get that one photo that shows off your family’s time at Dreamworld, then make sure (to the horror of your teenager, and the delight of your little ones) that you all jump in front of the Dreamworld globe when you first arrive. Whatever you do, don’t do it when you are leaving, as it will quite possibly be a disaster!!
Top 5 Tips for visiting Dreamworld
1. Plan your day
Before you leave home, take a look at the Dreamworld on the Gold Coast to decide what attractions and shows to put at the top of your list. Will the teenagers want to ride the Tower of Terror II, while the toddlers meet Bananas in Pyjamas, and the boys in the middle check out Kung Fu Panda’s Land of Awesomeness? Remember to factor in some things for the whole family to enjoy, like a Tiger Island show or splashing around at Whitewater World.
You can’t fit everything in one day and it makes it so much easier to at least have some idea before you go.
2. Where to first?
If you are heading to Dreamworld during a peak period like school holidays, then its good to go to the rides that are the most popular or take the longest at the start of the day when lines should be shortest. These include rides like The Wiggles Big Red Car, the Claw, Tail Spin, and the Giant Drop.
3. Eat in or bring from home
There are lots of different options for family-friendly food at Dreamworld but if you are looking to save some money then bring your own from home. Don’t stroll in with your McDonald’s meal as you can’t bring in commercially prepared food, or your big esky, but throw together a small picnic and you’ll keep the family and your wallet happy. If you’re buying your lunch at Dreamworld, look out for the family meal deals like the large pizza with chips and four drinks for around $55. (The four of us didn’t come close to eating it all).
4. Don’t carry everything with you
When you’re heading anywhere with kids, your gear just seems to multiply, so instead of lugging it around the park, invest in a locker. A small locker will set you back $10 for the day but will fit a lot in there. Stash your swimming gear, snacks and extra water in there and save yourself the hassle of being a pack horse. You can open and close the locker as many times as you like but make sure you click on the button that says you want to keep using the locker. Otherwise you’ll end up having to pay for a new one.
5. Work out a meeting point
There are plenty of great places where you can meet up throughout the day, where you’ve got shade and something to look at while you’re waiting. Our favourites are Tiger Island, Woodlands with the Kangaroos, Flowrider, and the ice cream shop for a treat before heading home.
Would we go again?
Definitely. There was a really good cross section of rides and activities for every age and we didn’t have nearly enough time to see it all. We were there from the moment they opened the gates to when they were closed and were happy with what we saw. Next time we want to experience some of the shows and meet a few characters like Kung Fu Panda and the Penguins of Madagascar. There are quite a few rides at both Dreamworld and Whitewater World we would want to test out as well that weren’t open when we visited.
Buy your tickets online, as they are cheaper than buying them at the gate. Ticket prices vary depending on whether you buy a one, three or five-day pass, or a season pass.
Dreamworld and Whitewater World are open seven days a week from 10am to 5pm.
Where to stay?
Why not make the most of it and spend a few days at the Gold Coast, exploring the beach and other fun activities. Take a look at a wide range of family friendly accommodation options for Dreamworld on the Gold Coast or check out our reviews on recommended family accommodation in our My Guide Directory.
Disclosure: We received complimentary tickets to Dreamworld, however this does not alter our thoughts about the attraction. All opinions are our own and reflect our experience on the day. Some of the links on this page are affiliate links. This means, at no additional cost to you, if you book after clicking on a link, we may earn a small commission. We book our travel through these companies, so please consider booking your travel through these links as it enables us to continue providing you with the best information on family travel.