Theme parks for Families with Disabled and SEN children

Theme parks

Are you looking for a discount Alton Towers Tickets? Or want to know more about Merlin Pass Offers? If you have a child with special needs, there is a lot of help if you know where to look.

A family day at a theme park can be a brilliant but also a wildly stressful experience. There are lots of freebies and help at most theme parks that can make your family outing a fantastic day to remember. First of all, you can get free tickets for your whole family or concessions for you as a carer of a disabled child depending on their needs. You can also queue jump, get priority parking as well as autism awareness wristbands for your child.

Free Theme Park Tickets for The Whole Family

Have you applied to Merlin’s Magic Wand Charity yet?

You can apply for up to 5 tickets (for the child and immediate family members) to have a day out at one Merlin’s attraction. These include: Thorpe Park , Chessington World of Adventures, Alton Towers Resort, LEGOLAND Windsor, LEGOLAND Billund, LEGOLAND Deutschland, Heide Park Resort and Gardaland, London Eye, Madame Tussauds and more.

Eligibility: You can apply for a seriously ill, disabled or disadvantaged children (aged 2 - 18 incl). These applications must be made by EITHER parents/guardians of these children OR organisations which work with these children. Have a look at their website for more information. IMPORTANTLY It can take 13 weeks to receive your tickets. Merlin's Wand Charity
Merlin’s Magic Wand does not provide exit passes these can be arranged directly through attractions.


Free Adult Tickets

Most theme parks and attractions will give you a free carers ticket.

This gives you free admission when you or another adult accompanies your disabled child. Call in advance to check what each attraction offers. Some attractions even do a special price for your disabled child as well. Each theme park seems to have a different policy about carer’s tickets so contact the themepark directly giving yourself plenty of time to send off any documents they need before you go. And don't forget to ask about disabled parking!

Queue Jumping

Most theme parks are sensitive to visitors with additional needs and recognise that for some children, waiting in a long line just isn't going to be an option.
 Alton Towers, for example, has a fantastic policy for kids that can't do queues, including those on the autistic spectrum. They will fast-track the child and their family (a limited number of visitors of course).

Autism Friendly Theme Parks

Some theme parks have extra help in place if you have a child with a learning disability. Some parks give you stickers or coloured wristbands for your child so park staff can be at hand if you need them or if your child becomes separated from you. Contact the themepark directly to chat about any extra help you need.

Top 5 Tips on what to take AWAY

  • ID for your child’s condition varies, so we recommend you take copies of your DLA, CEA card, Carers card or anything else you can think of, just in case.
  • You may find you can’t go on certain rides because of your child’s mobility – check ahead of time. Being turned away at the gate can spoil a great day.
  • It’s a good idea to mark the disabled toilets on the map when you arrive.
  • Don’t forget to pack your blue badge, parking can be a lot easier that way.
  • You will be allowed to bring a guide dog but not on the rides!

Get Inspired

Check out other great days out, short breaks and adventures you can have.

Useful Links

Theme Parks UK

This is your independent guide to UK theme parks. All the information you need on the UK's most popular theme parks, including reviews of the best rides, opening times, ticket prices, how to get there, where to stay, events, top tips and lots more.

Gullivers Land

Gullivers has six different parks in three different locations. Check out each location for specific disabled-friendly information.

Thorpe Park

Disability Guide


Disability Guide

Drayton Manor

Disability Guide

Oakwood Theme Park

Disability Guide

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Contact our helpdesk

Do you need specific help for your disabled or special needs child? Click here to tell us more about what you're looking for and our helpdesk team will do their very best to find you what you need. All of our advice is confidential and we will not share your details or personal information with anyone.