Fun at Chessington World of Adventures

single family fun at chessington world of adventures

Nick and I love theme parks, and we make a point of visiting at least one a year and using accommodation associated at the grounds. Staying in the hotels allows us the freedom to take time out, enjoy ourselves and without the worry of queuing for rides.

Where is chessington World of Adventure

Chessington World of Adventure is located in Surrey, so from Cambridgeshire approximately four hours of travelling by car.  Chessington World of Adventure opens at 10am – 6pm.  For us, travelling in the early hours wasn’t an option at that time, so we stayed overnight at a local Premier Inn. From our hotel window we could see some of the fantastic rides, which really got us in the mood for the next day.

The Premier Inn was suitable, but we had chosen the hottest period of the year. Unfortunately the hotel air conditioning system did not work and we only had one fan in our room so it was inadequate. 

Parking at Chessington World of Adventure

parking at chessington world of adventure

We stayed at the Safari Hotel so parking was free. On arrival we registered our car with the hotel and placed the parking ticket in the car for security. Plus the bonus is that the car was  adjacent to the hotel. So you won’t carry heavy luggage too far.

Depending on the room you book, if you select VIP you will be provided with your own parking bay. 

There are two different options available for parking:

  • £4 per day –  approximately 5 -10 minutes walk to the main entrance
  • £10 premier parking which is nearer the entrance

First impressions of the Safari Hotel

Safari hotel hotel entrance

From the minute we arrived we were  amazed. Check-in is very easy but after 3pm, we did leave the luggage in the car whilst we went and enjoyed our first day at the Chessington World of Adventure.

Safari Hotel family room

We stayed in a family room, which had a double bed and a bunk bed. All rooms had  a T.V., coffee making facilities, fridge, table and chairs. It was a Godsend that we had air conditioning as it was so hot.

View from the Safari Hotel communal areas

Although on both occasions that we have stayed at Safari Hotel, each time our rooms overlooked the car park, it did not stop us from enjoying the view from other areas of the hotel. Each floor had large windows which gave you an amazing view of the safari park. We hope on our next visit we are lucky to have a hotel room with this view.

kids look out on safari

On our second visit to the Safari hotel, Nick was really excited about the children’s lookout, which is located on the accommodation floor.  The prior year Nick spent a lot of time pretending he was on a real safari, using the binoculars provided to explore the safari park.

Sadly this year the observation hut had been removed. Which is a shame as it gave Nick a chance to meet other kids, and gave me five minutes to sit down.

Entertaining during the evenings

Although we stayed at the Safari Hotel, there were more things for Nick to do in the Aztech Hotel. There is evening entertainment for kids in the main bar area at the Aztech Hotel, which involves  fun and games plus a disco. Nick was shy at first, but soon joined in the fun. 

As you walk between both hotels there are amusement arcades. So make sure you keep loose change handy as the games range from 2p to 10p per slot machine.

Part of Chessington World of Adventures is open till about 8.30 pm each night. I could not drag Nick away from here as it is a play area for kids outside. They have built a rope climbing frame in the trees around the monkey cages. This gave Nick and I a chance to play together in the trees, but also Nick the opportunity to play with other kids.

All of the children’s activities in the evenings are fully supervised. So this did give me  the opportunity to sit down and relax myself. But it was a great way to tire Nick out at the end of the day.

Entrance to Chessington World of Adventures early bird

The great thing about staying in the hotels is the early access to the park the next morning. You are given wrist bands on check-in to the hotel.

The night before Nick and I confirmed  between us the rides we wanted to go to first before the park was open to the general public. This allowed us to explore the park more the day before if there were long queues.

Park opening times for the general public is 10 am to 5 pm. If you are staying at the hotel you can enter the theme park grounds from 9 am.

Fun in the amusement park

My first impression of Chessington was its sheer size – it is huge and thank goodness we were there for several days.

I was expecting Chessington World of Adventure to consist of only rides.  I was not expecting there to be so much variety of different entertainment. 

We enjoyed the petting zoo, live shows, Sealife Centre, 4D movies and lots of rides for all ages. Everything is included in the price, so to visit any of these you do not need to pay extra.

The first year we visited Chessington World of Adventures they had a show with Pandas. The pandas were animatronics, and they looked so real. The show  lasted for about half an hour and Nick loved it. He was also able to stroke the baby panda as well, which made his day.

Rides at Chessington World of Adventures

We were spoilt for choice with our ride selection. Although there were some rides that Nick was not able to go on due to his height we still had lots of fun. Each ride has a height measure at the main queue entrance so you can check before queuing.

Kingdoms to visit at Chessington World of Adventure

chessington world of adventure

There are so many different kingdoms to visit that cater for all ages. Combined in the kingdoms are rides for the younger children although they do have their own area. There was an excellent variety of all types of rides, and it was very easy to combine the adult rides with the younger rides.

  • Land of dragons
  • Wild woods
  • Pirates Cove
  • Land of the tiger
  • Wild asia
  • Forbidden kingdom

Our favourite rides

Nick and I disagreed on the best rides. I do not honestly think we will ever agree, but I cannot wait to go back and try them all out again.

Chessington world of adverture
chessington world of adventure

Nick’s favourite was Tiger Rock, but I felt this was a bit disappointing.  We seemed to wait for ages for this ride. It is a water log flume ride that enters a dark tunnel with brief animations.  The largest drop on this ride is about 50ft, but it is a slow ride. We did get wet from the ride, but because it was so hot, we really did not mind. It was a long walk around the tiger enclosures to queue for this ride.

Gallery of tomb blaster

We both loved Tomb Blaster. This is exactly as it sounds. You board a train with rotating carts. You travel through a dark tomb and there are fire lasers at targets that light up.  You can keep a track of your scores as these are displayed in front of you. We both loved this, as soon as we got off, we queued again.

I loved the Vampire ride but Nick hated it. Even though he was the correct height, he did hit his head several times on the seat, which made it very uncomfortable for him. It is quite a fast roller coaster and your legs dangle in the air. I love these types of rides and I did want to go back again, but I could not leave Nick. I am hoping when we visit again, he will try this again as he will be taller.

Where did we eat

I always make sure that we take a picnic for our first day, mainly because we are not having to worry where to eat and it gives us more freedom. Plus it does keep the costs down. 

Around the grounds there are plenty of picnic facilities. On the first day we took a picnic so we did not have to worry about finding a place to eat. The picnic areas are near wildlife shows. NIck was quite restless but whilst he watches the show I was able to sit down and relax a bit.

At the start of our visit I purchased a refillable cup for £1.99. This saved me a lot of money and there are so many refillable stations located around the whole theme park.

Restaurants at Chessington World of Adventure

Chessington world of adventure hotel restaurant

There are so many restaurants to choose from –  during the evening we ate at the hotels. The first night we had a buffet at the Aztech Hotel and the second night we ate at the Safari Hotel which is a menu selection.

  • Temple Restaurant (Aztech Hotel) – Buffet – £19.95 per adult – £7.95 – £12.95 per child
  • Zafari bar & grill (Safari Hotel) – £25 Adult 3 course – £7.95 – £9.95 per child

Restaurants inside of the theme park

After our first day we decided to try the Pizza & Pasta bar restaurant. This was a buffet restaurant, but it felt very rushed and I was not really impressed with the food. There was not much variety and it was not very warm.

Next time we visit we are going to try the Chicken & Vampire burger bar.

  • Smoke house – £15 per adult – £6 per child
  • Chicken & Vampire burger bar £7.75 per adult – £4.50 per child
  • Pizza & pasta bar £13 per adult – £6.50 per child

All of these prices are meal deals and you will need to prebook.

Prices to stay in a hotel at Chessington World of Adventure

If you book your hotel on the compound, it will normally include parking, breakfast, free Wifi and entry to the park.

I booked two nights and had a 3 day pass at the park.The last day was a bit of a waste for us as we have a 4 hours journey home. So we only spent half a day in the park.  I paid £345 which also included food vouchers for two evening meals in the hotels.

The prices will vary depending on the number of adults, children and stay. There is also an option £19.99 insurance which I assume is in case of any future issues with Covid-19.

Have a look at the offers chessington World of Adventures click here.

Theme park day ticket passes

Cost of theme park tickets will vary but buy in advance as this reduces the cost.

  • 2020 prices £29.50 pre book (5-days in advance) or £48 at the gate

Plus you will have to pay for your parking on the day.

There is a rainy day guarantee as well, so if it rains on the day you attend, and rides are closed you will be given a free day return.

Buy your tickets here or check out current offers for short stay and every day park prices.


Chessington for me and Nick has everything we need. There are rides, entertainment, swimming, zoo and a Sealife Centre all in one place.

It is a long day and there is a lot of walking, although there is transport to help you get between different sections of the park. We did not really use this as we wanted to explore.

The reason why I enjoy staying on the resorts is value for money, plus knowing that you do not have a long ride home after a day of fun for me is a bonus. You can relax in the evenings, and sit outside. Plus there are so many different things for Nick to do that helps as a single parent to keep him entertained.  

Chessington World of Adventures is very well laid out, and each Kingdom has something for all ages. Although we do get lost each time we visit. I am not sure how, as we had a map, an app I downloaded to my mobile phone. Plus there are maps located all around the park, with a big arrow saying ‘you are here’. But we still managed it.

We will definitely visit Chessington World of Adventure next year, but instead of staying in a hotel we will try the Glamping. It looks fun and we have stayed in the hotels several times, it is time for a change.

Have a look at the offers for day tickets and hotel stays, Click here to find out more about current offers

Check out some of our other family fund days out

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