A Thorpe Park VIP Coaster Climb is fantastic for thriller seekers, those who love Coasters and/or those who want to admire a fantastic view. We were invited to climb THE SWARM as part of our Thorpe Park Resort Ambassador programme and it was excellent timing with our teen’s 14th birthday. There was just one problem – those of us old enough* to go up all have a fear of height apart from the teen! This meant I had to face my fear and do it anyway!
VIP Coaster Climb of THE SWARM
First of all I would like to say that the VIP Coaster Climb is much more than just climbing up the Coaster. When they say climb though what they really mean is you walk up a lot of high steps (which you can see through the gaps). We were told to meet at the Depth Charge Fastrack Unit which is just inside the park. Closed-toe shoes were a must and we were advised to wear warm clothing (as it gets cold at the top). I did wear a thin sweater and waterproof coat but also opted for my shorts as I know how hot I get (especially when anxious) – and I was still really rather warm. We did do this in late July too though.
First of all we learned about how safety was of paramount importance at Thorpe Park Resort and we had to wait until things had been done and the area swept of people before we could begin. We were then taken to the Operating room where we were not allowed to do any filming. We were told about behind the scenes things which are a part of the experience before being harnessed up. Our teen currently fancies himself as a Rollercoaster Engineer when he grows up so it was a fantastic experience for him. We were given lots of opportunities to answer any questions we may have at several points. We were then hooked onto the pole that runs up the side of the steps to the top of THE SWARM – with one instructor at the front of us and one at the back. They were very patient and helped/explained things as we went along. There are lots of safety points too – I felt really secure. In fact I didn’t get scared all the way up. Once we reached the top again we were told no filming as the next part of the experience was delivered – this part I think was the teen’s favourite part as it tested his knowledge and taught him a few things. We were given the opportunity to take in the stunning views – which included seeing The Shard and Wembley Stadium, as well as the whole of the island. After taking several photos we began the descent back down (which was probably the scariest bit).
The other Coasters available for a VIP Coaster Climb are Colossus (which only 2 visitors can climb) and Nemesis Inferno (which allows for 5 guests). They are included with VIP Merlin Annual Passes or can be bought as stand-alone experiences for £50. After watching previous videos on YouTube I had decided that THE SWARM looked the less frightening as there is something seeming to support you on either side of the stairs (although I am sure it is completely safe. THE SWARM is also the highest at 127 ft and 184 steps – giving the best views.
* The minimum age recommended is 12 years old – due to the size of the full body harnesses used.
My teen and I received a free VIP Coaster Climb as part of our Thorpe Park Resort Ambassadorship – all thoughts and opinions are honest and my own.