Go Ape! Even more fun to be had at Chessington World of Adventures.

Let me start by telling you that I am not great with heights.  Despite the fact I met my husband hot air ballooning I tend to avoid going any higher than my front step. So Go Ape! has never really appealed...

It did appeal greatly however to my children who prove they take after my ex-scaffolder hot air ballooning husband in their total lack of fear of heights. They have pestered for ages to have a go at one of the the adventurous tree courses which are dotted around the country.

Go Ape! Chessington World of Adventures review
The Go Ape! at Chessington World of Adventures in Surrey is the 30th to open in the UK and the only one to be created at a theme park. This  fabulous new addition to the already popular attraction means the whole family can have a forest adventure.

I say the whole family - children as young as 6 can join in the fun at the Chessington Go Ape! with a special hour-long junior course as long as they are over 1 metre tall. (please note - age and height requirements vary at different Go Ape! centres. Please check before booking)

At Chessington Parents can join children on the course or watch from the ground, safe in the knowledge that participants are secured at all times with sturdy harnesses and there are lots of lovely trained helpers if the children suddenly lose their nerve.

For children over 10 (and over 1.4 metres tall) and adults there is a spectacular 2-3 hour treetop adventure complete with Tarzan swings, rope bridges and a fabulous zip wire finale.

I was invited to bring along a couple of children to explore the new Go Ape! courses. I opened to do the junior course with my 10-year-old daughter and happily agreed to my adventurous Scout-leader niece's pleas to let her go on the bigger course with my 11-year-old son.

I'm glad I made that choice. The junior course was exciting enough for my daughter who appears to be part squirrel. As I inched along she bounded from treetop to treetop having the most fun I think I have ever seen her having.

Go Ape! Chessington World of Adventures Review

Even very young children seemed to be relishing the challenge and those who lost their nerve were soon coaxed along by the wonderful friendly fully trained staff.

There's really no need to be concerned about safety by the way. Harnesses are fitted by trained staff and checked and the safety chat before going up to the tree tops is thorough and in the Junior's case, delivered in a  chatty entertaining style whilst ensuring the participants completely understand the rules.

safety is key at Go Ape! Chessington World of Adventures.

There's even a low-level test run so you can practice running the trolley along the safety wire and you are shown how and where to hold on - the trolley bit has a plastic bit you can cling to if you are feeling nervous although you are totally safe even hands free. If by any chance an adventurer fell the safety wire and harness would catch them.

Obviously I only have pictures of me and my daughter as my son was off with his cousin (she's in her 20's) but when we reunited there was lots of excited chat about the daredevil fun we had all had.

Go Ape! ChessingtonWorld of Adventures

Here's a few fun facts about Go Ape! At Chessington:

  • The longest zip wire is 150 metres (34 metres on Junior course)
  • The highest platform is 10 metres (6 metres on Junior course)
  • The longest crossing is 17.5 metres (12 metres on Junior course)
  • Both courses are suitable for people weighing up to 130kg or 20.5 stone.
Prices range from £18-£33 depending on age and which course you do. Car parking is free and there are toilets and a cafe. You need to book in advance and turn up in plenty of time for your session - 30 minutes before is ideal.

You should wear sensible clothing and shoes - we wore jeans, T-shirts and trainers. Bring a raincoat if it looks like rain. You can wear gloves as there is a slight risk of rope burn. We didn't have an issue but if you have supersoft sensitive hands it might be a good idea. You can take cameras/smartphones up but ideally have them on a lanyard. There is lots more information on the website.

It's a great family adventure and we loved the setting - making our way along the crossings high up in the trees was really good fun and I was even brave enough to have a go on the zipwire. I enjoyed it so much I had another go!

It would make a great birthday treat for adults or children, especially if combined with a day in the theme park and a night in the new Explorer glamping site - read my review of that here.There are some great deals on offer and still time to squeeze in a glamping night this year (half term?) Check the Chessington website for details.

My son who celebrates his 21st next week would have loved it - I'm considering suggesting it as a birthday trip for him which he can enjoy with his younger siblings. It's often hard to find something they will all enjoy.

After my Go Ape! experience I was proud of myself for overcoming my fear of heights and even more proud of my fearless children who were buzzing with excitement for ages afterwards. It was a fantastic family day out!

Go Ape! Chessington World Of Adventures Review

Disclaimer: We tried Go Ape! at Chessington World of Adventures free for the purposes of this review. Views and opinions remain honest and my own.