So, I had no idea what to expect when I was invited to spend a day at Bear Grylls Adventure at the NEC in Birmingham, which is owned by Merlin Entertainments whose main UK attractions portfolio also includes Alton Towers and Thorpe Park. Visitors are challenged to test their limits on some of the world’s toughest mental and physical challenges. Split into five zones, high-octane activities included a survival maze, an assault course and indoor shooting and code-cracking escape rooms.
A number of headline adventures are also on offer and will replicate some of Grylls’ televised adventures, taking in skydiving, climbing high ropes and diving among other activities.
My sister was concerned that I might injure myself before our large family gathering the following week. But I quickly reassured her that I would be fine... I mean it's not like the instructors would let anything bad happen to me. Yes I’m clumsy, but not that clumsy!
Adrenaline pumping, I turned up on a grey cloudy day praying that it wouldn't rain and ready to start my Bear Grylls adventure.
First up was Archery, which was a struggle initially. We were split into two teams to see who could hit the numbered and coloured targets.
I found the bow a little tricky to navigate while the kids in my group seemed to ease straight into it. I eventually got the hang of it before dashing off to the next activity, which was Shooting. After a safety demonstration, it was time to focus on the target ahead in the shooting range using both a pistol and air rifle.
Having never shot anything before I was surprisingly good, hitting the bull's-eye more than once. Once the 30 minutes were up, the instructor gave us our shooting and gun targets to keep as a badge of honour. I was considering framing them but for now they are safely tucked away in my kitchen drawer.
Bear Grylls Adventure entrance