Lifestyle and Travel blogger Alice Langley from Project: Wanderlust took her family to Chessington World of Adventures to report for BritMums about the family friendliness of the UK’s favourite theme parks.
Chessington World of Adventures, Leatherhead Rd, Chessington KT9 2NE
Chessington has always been our family park of choice. With rides ranging from the gentle carousel, and other simple fairground classics. all the way up to the adrenaline filled twists and turns of Dragons Fury, there is something for everyone here.
One of the most family friendly things about Chessington World of Adventures is how much more it offers guests than just rides. The onsite Zoo, Sealife Centre and daily shows around the park give those with tiny tots in tow something to do while the thrill seekers are hitting the rides.
If your little ones happen to be mini adrenaline junkies, there are also some great rides to get them screaming with the big kids. Scorpion Express (0.9m and over) and Hocus Pocus Hall (no height limit) are both fantastic for the under 5s (as well as being great for those older members of the group too) and the Bubbleworks is guaranteed fun for all the family. Those with babies will be able to find Baby changing facilities next to toilets at Lodge Gate and a dedicated baby feeding room located alongside the Forbidden Kingdom toilets near the First Aid Centre.
For those slightly older guests Chessington have some really great attractions to introduce children to the joy of rides. Vampire, suitable for those over 1.1m, is a fast-paced family rollercoaster that will see you flying over the treetops with the legs dangling down below, or for those who prefer to keep their feet on the ground, and are over 1m tall, the Zufari ride will take them of a fun-filled tour of the Safari Park. If you have teenagers with you (that are over 1.4m) then the lure of Rameses Revenge, Dragons Fury and Rattlesnake will be enough to keep them interested in joining the days out for years to come.
With all of this fun being had it won’t be long before stomachs are rumbling and talk turns to finding a place to eat. The park offers and abundance of food outlets offering anything from a quick sandwich to grab and go at The Original Sandwich all the way up to a sit down meal. Our restaurant of choice is the Smokehouse BBQ. New in Market Square for 2016, this BBQ joint offers pulled pork, beef brisket, pork ribs and chicken (all cooked in a wood barbecue pit) plus the most delicious mac and cheese for the vegetarians like me.
If you want to make a short break out of your trip to Chessington then the onsite hotels are just what you need. We have stayed twice now in the Azteca Hotel and couldn’t recommend it highly enough. The jungle themed family rooms come with a separate children‘s sleeping area, perfect for a good nights sleep ahead of a fun-filled day in the park, and having breakfast served overlooking the safari animals the next morning is always a highlight of my trip. There is also a Premier Inn within walking distance from the park if you would rather stay off-site.
For those looking for an even more wild adventure, stay in the glamping area next to the Wild Asia area of the park complete with safari tents and after hours access to some areas of the theme park. They have a real safari look and feel, but with wifi, lights, power sockets and comfortable beds with linens. Check out the WILD Explorer Glamping experience.
Our girls adore a trip to Chessington, Lottie who is 7 would ride Vampire all day long and Little O who is just 4 cannot get enough of the classic family favourite Bubbleworks.
Visiting Chessington is a lovely way to spend the day and has become an annual event for us. While the queues for their most popular rides can reach over an hour long at peak times (queue jump tickets are available), the park itself is well laid out and spacious so you can escape the crowds if you want to. It really is a family park with something for everyone.
Be sure to check out the latest times, prices and restrictions because of COVID.
On the day prices (big discounts available on tickets booked in advance online)
Adult Ticket (Over 12) £47.60
Child Ticket (3-11) £43.60
Family/Group Ticket (available with two or more people paying together) £36.60pp
Opening Times 10am-6pm
Blogger Rating 9/10
Top tip: Booking a short break in one of the resort hotels gets you 2 days park entry for the price of one, plus unlimited queue jump for the first hour the park is open on your second day.