Family Glamping at Chessington World of Adventures

If I had to name a place to nominate as the perfect family day out for my tribe, Chessington World of Adventures would definitely be in my short shortlist. Add glamping to the park's many attractions and it becomes the almost perfect destination for us.
Explorer glamping at Chessington

Of course Chessington has rides - fling you about, upside down and up and down rides which often include a soaking for extra fun  (that's my thrill loving teenagers happy) and more gentle round and about rides which delight even the most nervous members of my family.

day out at Chessington World of Adventures

Add some fascinating shows, animal attractions and a SEA LIFE centre and you'd be hard pressed to beat Chessington as a memorable day out.

In fact as we found it can be hard to fit everything there into just one day which is why you can stay nearby or even on site in hotels which often offer short break deals including a couple of days in the park.

Or you could opt for some real excitement and check out Chessington's new Explorer glamping site. That's what we did a couple of weeks ago much to the delight of the two lucky children I took with me - my 15 year old daughter and my 7 year old son.

Chessington’s “glamping” site offers a choice of thick canvas tents. There are 31 round tents which sleep four in one double bed and two singles, and four premium safari style 'Amboseli” tents which have a kingsize bed, and separate second sleeping area with three single beds and additional living space plus tea and coffee making facilities (which I'd like to see extended to all tents - I missed my morning cuppa). 

Premium tent at Chessington World of Adventures glamping site

The premium tents also have an outside seating area. Disabled guests? There are two standard tents with ramp access for disabled guests, designated disabled parking and a disabled toilet incorporating a wet-room style shower.

Bedding linen is provided in all tents and towels are provided in the premium tents. Perfect for when you just want to fall into bed after a busy day in the park.

Now let me say - when boasting talking about our glamping stay at Chessington a few people have appeared disappointed that the tents don't have en suite toilets, wood burning stoves or cooking facilities. 

But this is not glamping where you are spending a vast amount of time in the tents. Mostly people spend as much time as possible in the park with the glamping set up as a fun alternative to the hotel option.

So it's not full on glamping by some people's standards but the tents were certainly more luxurious than our usual set up - we had wooden flooring with a nice rug underfoot, two sockets for charging phones etc, lights, proper cosy beds with thick warm duvets and lovely plump pillows. There was a large mirror, an easy chair and a cute bamboo hanging rail with a shelf for shoes. Oh, and free wifi which Grumpy very much appreciated!

cosy beds and free wifi glamping at Chessington
The toilet and shower facilities are close to all tents thanks to the clever design of the site and the exclusive Explorer Outpost buffet restaurant opens at 7.30am for breakfast (and that much needed cuppa.)

A note about the "facilities." The toilets are fundamentally posh portaloos but clean and themed with bamboo style decoration to continue the safari theme of the site.

glamping toilets at Chessington

The shower cubicles were spacious and spotlessly clean with lots of hot water from the powerful showers.  

showers at Chessington World of Adventures new glamping site

The site itself felt very secure with all night security and a 24-hour reception tent. Paths are made from a kind of hessian and cheery lamps strung along bunting give the whole site a fun festival feel.

Explorer Glamping site Chessington

Piped safari noises are supposed to add to the experience. The children loved it but I was glad when it was turned off at 10.30pm. I hoped to hear some of Chessington's resident animals making authentic safari noises but throughout the night all I heard was wind through trees, distant traffic, the odd aeroplane flying over and the gentle snoring of my happy family members.

night time view of Explorer Glamping Chessington

Glamping at Chessington brings extra benefits too. We enjoyed exclusive time in the Wild Asia part of the park where I braved Kobra-check out my husband and daughter riding Kobra in the short video!

We all raced Tuk Tuk Turmoil (dodgem) cars, my daughter and husband got wet on the Monkey Swinger and I rode with my little one on the Jungle Bus. All lots of fun with no queues!

Wild Asia Chessington World of Adventures

We filled up with the substantial and excellent dinner buffet in the Explorer Outpost restaurant and bar (this can be added to your package for £50 per family) which has plenty of choice for even the fussiest eaters. 

The range of food on offer food included soups, salads and a jacket potato bar with lots of toppings and main course dishes like battered chicken breast chunks, Piri Piri chicken, BBQ beef with a chilli and maple glaze, Malaysian vegetable curry and my daughter’s fave, mac and cheese.

Explorer Outpost buffet restaurant Chessington glamping

Leave room for pudding though - who can resist a chocolate fountain? There was also lots of gorgeous fruit plus cakes and tarts, mousse and jelly.

Glamping breaks start at £149 per family of four and currently include two days in the park.

We loved Chessington World of Adventures which I think is a particularly good destination for families like ours with children covering a wide age range. Whether you are taking tiny tots or towering teens there really is something for everyone and lots of rides and experiences you can enjoy as a family.

You can read more about our stay at the fabulous family travel inspiration site Mum's Do Travel. Many thanks to Gretta who offers insight there into so many amazing destinations perfect for families.

Disclaimer: We were invited to experience a Chessington World of Adventure's Glamping break as guests of the park. Views and opinions remain honest and my own.