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Treasure Trails  - Southwold Murder Mystery 

16/02/2015

Treasure TrailsTreasure TrailsYou may have seen that on Valentine's Day our little family went to Southwold for the day and followed a Murder Mystery Trail supplied to us by Treasure Trails, well if you found yourself intrigued by this concept here is the review so you can get a better feel of what we did and what Treasure Trails offer. 

Treasure Trails is a simple idea, perfectly executed. They simply give you a walk, with a step by step guide that's easy to follow but to make it fun and completely interactive your walk uses the surroundings to provide you with clues along the way. There are three themes, Murder Mystery, Spy or Treasure Hunt. They are designed for the whole family to enjoy and I have to say we had a blast!

I picked the Southwold walk for two reasons, one, I had already been harassing the husband about a day trio to Southwold for Valentine's, it's one of our favourite places, we go their regularly and it is just a bit special to us, two, the walk clearly stated in was pushchair and wheelchair and wheelchair friendly a must with a toddler in tow.

The choice was hard though, there are over 1000 walks to choose from, all over the country. I couldn't believe the amount that were local to me, Wymondham, Dereham, Swaffham, all over Norfolk but Southwold in Suffolk won out, as I said it's a special place for us, one of my 'happy' places, honestly if you haven't visited you should, it's amazing, get the walk and explore, have a pint, go on the pier, get your walking boots on and explore the coast and heathland.

So Saturday arrived, dull, dreary and drizzly. L was starting to feel ill, we were tired but there was no way I was going to miss out on this day that I had been looking forward to so we loaded into the car and set off. The walk started in the main Pay and Display car park by the Pier which is the perfect starting point for anyone unfamiliar with the area and I liked that they did this as we want to do more walks and if we go away somewhere different you need it to start somewhere that is easy to find and easy to park at, it's a simple thing but as walkers we have often found that a walk will literally start in the middle of nowhere and you either have to walk miles before you can start what you came to do or end up leaving your car parked in what might be a lay by but is more likely just a rut worn away by tractors letting cars pass!

One of the Southwold CanonsOne of the Southwold CanonsThe route was circular, it pointed out where there were toilet facilities, gave a distance of two miles and a time of two hours, both of which were spot on, they state on the front if there are accessibility issues, if they are suitable for dogs and other handy information. Then of course there are the directions and clues, we found the directions were excellent, we didn't go wrong once, the clues ranged from really easy to a bit taxing, a great family mix, you had to find images, solve basic codes, find information from signs, shops and information boards all to help you rule out suspects and weapons. I love the fact that if you get stuck you can text to get help with clues and when you get home you can enter your answers into the website to find out if you were right or wrong.

We were wrong, foiled at the very last clue, I whole heartedly blame my husband for this, he failed to relay some rather vital information. I really don't mind though because we had the best time! If we had have been right we would have been entered into an annual prize draw to win £1000.00 which would have been nice. 

We saw Southwold in a different light to normal, we actually read the information boards that were out, paid more attention to the surrounding architecture, found things we never realised were there. The walk even had a break at a play area built in, which not only was a great relief to L but was a brilliant find for us as parents, we had never come across this park before but now will probably go every time we visit Southwold. The whole thing was weirdly exciting, the husband and I kept trying to beat each other to solving the clues fastest, we worked together to solve things and just had fun. There were even facts about Southwold in between some of the clues and of course these were placed strategically so you would be at the area you were reading the fact about. 

Some CluesSome CluesThe trails cost £6.99 and you can choose if you want a hard copy posted to you or if you want have the PDF emailed to you to print at home, for £12.99 you get a walk personalised just for you! Before we did the walk we were dubious about the cost, thinking, as I'm sure many would, £6.99 is a bit steep for a walk. The thing is though, having now completed one, it is more than a walk, it is a family day out and as you know to get a family day out for less than a tenner is a bleeding miracle. The amount of effort that has gone into creating the walks is outstanding and the attention to detail makes everything so pleasurable and easy, I would now happily pay more. For us finding new things and learning so much about a place we love and are familiar with was brilliant, I'm now really intrigued to do one of the local walks, to see what we learn about the towns we grew up in and we have said that next time we go away we will try to find a Treasure Trail close to where we are staying to help us discover the area and make a day out of, I couldn't think of a more perfect way to discover a new place. I can also see us having loads of fun with these when L gets bigger and he is helping us solve the clues and getting really involved.

The Beach The Beach They even have driving routes so if you need something to do on one of those days when it's chucking it down and if your kids tell you one more time they are bored and want to go out then instead of locking yourself in the bathroom with a cuppa and a magazine, as lets face it, that's the only place you have to escape to, you can go for a fun Treasure Trail drive instead. They also do cycle trails as well if you prefer to get out and about on your push bike.

To cut a long story short Treasure Trails have converted me and I hope that they convert you too! If you do decide to buy one please let them know you found out about them from my website, not for a discount or anything I'm afraid, but just so they know that the advertising was effective *happy face*. I cannot rate them highly enough, everything was just perfect, honestly I can't wait to try another one.

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