We are in our car on the way home from a lovely day out at Toytopia,I thought I would share our Toytopia review with you. Toytopia is the newest and only exhibition showcasing all the best and latest toys that are available on the market in a very interactive and hands on way. For today’s adventure we had our three little adventurers and also my 9 year old nephew so we needed to have something that would cover age ranges from 2-9 years old.
The location of Toytopia is in the centre of Liverpool at the Liverpool Exhibition Centre. The postcode on the tickets wasn’t recognised by our TomTom and on the website it says to use L3 4XP instead. The exhibition is in a nice sized hall, so you can easily make your way around the hall and as a result everything is close by so perfect for having children doing a few different activities at the same time. I loved the layout of the hall which was a mixture of different toys aimed at different age ranges and it worked really well when you have children of different ages. The facilities such as toilets were plentiful and in really good condition.
Toytopia is designed to be a hands on experience. In that way it worked well as all the exhibitors had their products on display with the intention that the children can get to explore and try the toys. For me this was perfect as it shows you as parents how good a toy can be. Sometimes a toy which you may not consider as something that your child would like is really brought into its element when you can see it in action. I do like these shows and the likes of Grand Designs for Home DIY, and cake shows have been long established and it’s good to see there being a version for families to enjoy.
What did we think of it
The cost for the exhibition is £20 per person with under 3s going for free. But tickets can be bought online and using a discount code to save £5. The discount code is TOYTOPIA511
There are lots of things for children to try out and enjoy. It’s a perfect place to check out the latest toys in time for Christmas and test drive to ensure their suitability or see what other toys may be a better fit.
The stall holders were extremely friendly and were always welcoming to children of all ages. With a slightly unwell 2 year old, the exhibitors were all lovely and very interactive even with a tantrum throwing 2 year old!
One of the things I love about Hamleys Toy Store is the interactive displays of their toys and it’s great fun for children to see the fun of the toys that the packaging cannot offer. Think of all that fun and interaction but at every exhibit and even more interactive play then those displays can offer.
There was a great selection of toys on display, from the latest gadgets in music software to family staples such as Playmobil. I loved seeing the newer gadgets on display and we were really impressed with many of them including Beamz and Zincflyte.
There was lots for all ages. From young children to teens and it was great to see all ages covered.
The products for teens include hexbugs, the obstacle course, gaming computers with minecraft, lots of high tech toys that children can make move and interact and I loved the dj side.
There are a number of extras that the children can take part with in addition to the exhibits. There are a number of activities in the Beano area in the middle and the little adventurers loved learning how to balloon model. There are also a number of characters out for children to see and have their photos taken with. Lots of exhibit had colouring and the items to also occupy the children. There was plenty of supplies which is great as it is a big pet peeve of mine when things run low at big exhibits.
The exhibits have a number of show only discounts perfect to save some pounds on purchases, with some being over 50% of their retail prices.
What I would suggest to people visiting
- If you have VIP passes get there for the extra hour of exhibit time before the doors open for everyone. VIPs can enter at 9:30, the exhibition will be quiet and perfect for trying everything. With VIP tickets you are given a great goody bag, and I would suggest collecting this on the way out as you will otherwise have lots of extra bags to carry around all day.
- The doors open for normal ticket holders at 10:30, the exhibit is quieter then so the children can maximise playing with the products and the exhibitors showcasing the toys and all their features to the children.
- Wear shoes that are easy to take off as for the obstacle course and trampolines these need to be removed and its a big headache having difficult shoes to put on the children. Also, have the children wearing layers so you can take off some when they get too hot!
- I would always speak to the exhibitors for each of the products as they are always forthcoming to share the information about their products and you can really appreciate the best bits of the toys.
- There are tables out for people to eat food purchased at the show and also your own packed lunches, I would suggest either an early or late lunch as you will struggle for seats around lunch time. Especially if like us you were in a big family group.
- I would bring a few water bottles as the hall can get hot and after a few runs at the obstacle course or scooting the children will get really thirsty.
- Remember that this is a show where all the products which are being showcased are available to buy, so bring money with you to make use of the the show discounts. Likewise, you are also likely to have children who want to buy everything (like our youngest two) so have some treats on hand to distract their attention whilst you move on will be handy!
Things that I would improve
On arrival I would suggest that the visitors are given a timetable of different activity times, I.e the extra activities so visitors will know the times that these activities are on and can plan their day accordingly.
The obstacle course was the main non toy attraction and I think it would great to have a few additional attractions like this for making the cost of admission more value for money. The children are able to play with all the exhibits but I think a few bouncy castles and other attractions similar to these would make the event complete.
Overall, the children have come home with huge smiles and telling their cousins about all the fun they had. The show is really interactive and there are good exhibits for them to play and enjoy. The cost of entrance is high but the children are able to play with the toys until their hearts are content and the show is opened until 6pm so you can take your time and fully enjoy the toys. Also with the location is in the heart of Liverpool, you can end the day with a lovely family meal and it would be a really nice day out. It is the first year of the show and I think a few additional attractions would make for a bigger and better event next year.