Durham Fire & Ice returned for its second year, held over Friday 24th and Saturday 25th of February this festival has 10 ice statues situated around Durham city on a trail throughout the historic town.
OK, let me begin by saying we were late to the party, with a sick little one on Friday we thought it would be safe to visit on Saturday to complete the trail and take part in activities etc. We arrived to not huge masses of people but enough to put us off wanting to stand around for over an hour while kids chipped away at the ice block, the time spent with one child was more than 5 minutes and with a queue at least 20 deep I really couldnt see us standing in line that long.
Same goes for the King Arthur Sword in the Stone, the amount of children wanting to have a turn with no real queue just people jostling to have their kids photographs taken with the sword wasnt worth hanging around and taking our chance with. There was also no chocolate ice block with it having been completely used on the Friday, you would have thought they would have one for each day and that may be something to look at for the future!
We set out on the trail and were a little dissapointed with what we found. Due to high winds and warm(ish) weather most of the statues had melted or at least part melted. This of course wasnt helped by the fact there were people touching each statue, I was surprised there wasnt anyone telling people not to touch as there seemed to be enough security around each one but i think they had given up at this point.
However to make it a little more exciting for the kids we made up our own stories about the statues…
The Dragon: He was so cold he blew his fire over himself forgetting of course he was made from ice!
King Arthur: Had a run in with a witch doctor who shrunk his head… we like to think he was handsome at one point!
The Swallower: Lost his teeth due to bad dental hygene – lesson there kids so beware!
The Mermaid: Gained her legs and flounced off in a strop (she wanted the tail as well…women eh?!)
We were however lucky enough to see a TinkerBelle fairy being carved which the kids thought was fantastic, I think she made up for everything – call it fairy magic!
In all it took us around 45 minutes to walk the trail, im sure this would have been a lot longer had there been more to see but the kids didnt find any facination looking at melted blocks – they did however love the fire lanterns with each statue.
We did stay for the first display at 5.15pm but watching it from the side made for not too good photographs, it was like a mosh pit at the front so we didnt risk tackling the masses! Amelia loved it however and was bopping along to the music, oohing and aahing to the water and fire display!
To make up for missing the ice we found an ice cream parlour we hadn’t known about before. Split and Glory, situated above Chapters Tea Rooms (top floor) is an American diner serving ice cream sundaes and milkshakes.
We climbed all the way to the top of the building before being told it was cash only, so…all the way back down, cashpoint and back up again I think I deserved the banana split i chose to share with hubby.
The girls opted for the Unicorn Shake and Cookie Monster Shake which were filled with treats, sour sugars and rainbow belts!
We got to choose 3 different ice creams for our split and with around 20 to choose from i managed to whittle it down to bubble gum, cotton candy and coconut! The whole dish was really delicious and i happened to turn for 2 minutes to take pictures of the girls with theirs and hubby had demolished most of it – remind me next time to get my own!
Overall we had a great afternoon out, we didnt let the melted ice get us down, we laughed and carried on going! The girls thought it was great fun and that is what a good day out is about.
Heres to our next one!