Chessington World of Adventures is just 30 minutes up the road for us, and is somewhere we’ve never been – that was until we bought a Merlin Pass, which started today. Of course, it was pouring down for most of the day, and while the whole park isn’t open until March, we did wonder if it was possible to still have fun, so here’s my review of Chessington in the rain!
Chessington in the rain is probably not the first thing on someone’s mind when thinking of something to do on a rainy day. We would have gone the following day except H has a party – and really, we were curious what was there. It’s all well and good looking at maps online but you only really get a feel for a place once you’re there. As Premium Merlin Pass holders we could do lots of things at no extra cost, though actually to be fair there’s only a few hours in the day you can do it anyway, so most things were achieved!
We spent the bulk of our sheltered time in two places – the All-You-Can-Eat buffet (which came in at £20 with our Merlin discounts) and the SeaLife area which looks small, but packs a lot into the space – and which we enjoyed very much. Add to that a discount in the shop afterwards and I can see how we’ll end up making our money back on our passes once the season gets into full swing.
SeaLife – deceptively small, and plenty inside, including jellyfish, which I love watching. The stingrays got pretty close too, and H got to put her hand in the water to have a shrimp tickle her hand which she started off nervous about, and found it quite fun in the end.
We wandered around the grounds – most shops were open, and the remnants of the Christmas displays were still out – Christmas songs over the speakers, which I know will change in a day or two when it will just be Zoo Days. The monkey area at Amazu (which also had the most gorgeous of capybara’s) also has the treetop walk, which H slipped over in – Shaun kept her company up there, but with it being wet the slide was closed, so they didn’t stay there too long.
There were reindeer although we missed the meet and greet, and donut stands which couldn’t keep up with the demand (always a good excuse to tell a cold and tired five year old when she’s desperate for some), as well as a Gruffalo show at the Africa Stage which lasted for around 25 minutes.
We arrived around midday and stayed until closing at 3pm – it was nice to get a feel of the place, and actually, Chessington in the rain is absolutely fine – there really is plenty under cover to do. There was a lot more we could have done as well, we’ll be back to do that as soon as we can!
Chessington’s website is here