Take a tour around Chessington World of Adventures’ roller coasters in the morning, explore over 4,000 acres of parkland in the afternoon or have a day at the races – just three of the amazing activities on offer in Chessington.
Activities in Chessington
Chessington World of Adventure
Originally built in the 1930s and opened as a theme park in 1987, Chessington World of Adventure is one of the most popular theme parks in the UK and the only one in Greater London, welcoming two million guests each year. With over 40 rides, including several roller coasters, two water rides and ten themed areas including the Wild West, Pirates’ Cove, the Wild Woods and the Forbidden Kingdom, there’s plenty to explore. The biggest rides include the 43mph Kobra ride, The Vampire, The Gruffalo River Ride Adventure and Dragon’s Fury as well as plenty of rides and zones designed for smaller children. Handily, our Chessington hotel is part of the same complex, meaning you can beat the queues and get into the park first. Although open all year round, the park’s opening times do vary so check ahead for your visit.
Hampton Court Palace
Hampton Court Palace
Once home to Henry VIII and his many, many wives, Hampton Court Palace is a wonderful year-round attraction, home to a twisting 300-year old maze, ghost tours, a magic garden for children with rides and entertainment and even a huge ice rink during the winter. Several miles north of Chessington, the 500-year old Palace makes for a fascinating tour with spectacular artworks and the world’s largest grapevine.
Kids large and small will love Hobbledown Farm, a fantasy park and wonderland that takes its name from the series of books with the same name. The themed farm park has everything you’d want including access to furry chipmunks and cheeky meerkats, extensive indoor and outdoor play areas, an arts and crafts yurt, picnic area and café. Open year-round, the farm is a great family option whatever the weather and just a five-minute drive from our Chessington hotel near Horton Park.
If you’re feeling the need to get out of the city and into the open, Bushy Park is the perfect place. Home to red and fallow deer, the sprawling woodland and grassland park next to Hampton Court Palace covers over 1,000 acres, allowing you plenty of time and space to roam and explore. The park has plenty to see and do, including a water garden, the excellent Pheasantry Cafe and their impressive Diana fountain, while the park was also home to the US air base in the Second World War, giving it an added sense of history.
Even bigger still is Richmond Park. Another one of the eight Royal Parks alongside Bushy Park, Richmond Park is close enough to the city that you can get distant views of St Paul’s Cathedral but far enough out of London to be home to a wide range of rare birds, beetles, bats and wildflowers. The 2,500-acre park was originally a 17th-century hunting ground and is still home to hundreds of deer today, while there’s also a golf course, bike hire centre and popular café in the park.
Sandown Park Racecourse
A renowned racecourse that hosts six major races each year, Sandown Park Racecourse is a five-minute gallop from Chessington and is also a popular events location, hosting everything from live bands like UB40, Madness and Girls Aloud as well as trade shows, car events, festivals, auctions and more. The horse racing season runs through the year with flat racing events every month with dozens of restaurants, bars, cafés and suites available to catch the action from.