Since we left, she has not stopped talking about it and we would already love to go back.
If you’re looking for a family glamping weekend, a staycation or a school holiday adventure with the kids near to London, with so much to do on site, we really do recommend it.
Parking & Arrival
We arrived through the main gates at Chessington World of Adventures to find the Explorer Glamping area, which is in a different area to the main resort hotels.
Parking is at the bottom of the Gorilla Carpark, just past the Go Ape area, and you can park anywhere there. It is a grass carpark which is a bit uneven, but you just cross the road through to the entrance to the Explorer Glamping area.
There is a welcome reception area tent where you check in for your stay. The staff there were very welcoming and told us our tent number, before leading us through to the tent.
They also told us timings of what to expect when we were there and where to head for meals as well as the entrance to the theme park.
We were given special wristbands as we were staying in the resort to wear all weekend in order to access the theme park early as well as stay on site for meal times.
The glamping tent – what’s included?
The tents were beautiful and all with a safari theme throughout the glamping site. Inside you had electricity, super comfortable beds, all your bedding and a rail for any clothes you wanted to hang. There were also lights – something else you didn’t need to remember to bring – and plug sockets too!
We were in the middle of a heatwave, so the team had thankfully given us a fan for the room, which was a great help.
There was a double bed and two single beds, with plenty of space around it – Lily slept so well in her bed!
If you’re staying in the premium tent, you can also have added extras such as storage, outdoor furniture, toiletries and towels.
Cots are also available on request and both Wifi and parking is included when staying at the resort.
When booking, you also select what day(s) you want to visit the park, as you have theme park, Sea Life and zoo tickets included in your stay.
Facilities – toilets & showers
There are toilet and shower facilities on site which are regularly cleaned. They are in portacabins, but they are flushable, with mirrors and sinks too. We never had to wait to use the facilities when there, and they are easily accessible from all tents.
There is also an accessible toilet with wet room shower facility.
On site, there are two accessible tents as well as an accessible toilet and wet room shower. The parking area is grassy, but the paths around the glamping site are flat. You can find out more here.
Lily was super excited to walk into the tent to be welcomed with balloons, a monkey toy, a Chessington drawstring bag, and a whole load of other goodies.
As it was Lily’s birthday, we paid for the VIP birthday package as part of their in room VIP packages.
Alternatives include an explorer treats package or a new animal friend package, which you can book either on booking or as an upgrade.
We also booked Lily on to the giraffe feeding experience, which we received 20% discount on as part of our stay. For this, we drove to the main hotel in the morning for the experience.
What to bring
Towels and toiletries (unless in premium tent), any activities you want for the kids when in the glamping area, and your clothes and chargers too. Everything else is there for a night’s stay, particularly with eating at the Explorer Outpost, although you could bring extra snacks and drinks.
There is a small shop in the entrance, with hot and cold drinks as well as some merchandise too.
As part of your stay, evening entertainment is provided for families in the Explorer Glamping village. Lily loved the scavenger hunt, games and answering the quiz questions. Families could all be spread out in the area and you had the chance to meet some of Chessington’s mascot friends too.
While visiting, you’re also able to access the Savannah Splash Pool for a one-hour session – a fun themed pool area for families to enjoy with splash pool, water cannons and more. You need to book this in advance and timeslots are limited, but it looked fantastic fun.
You are also in the car park next to the Chessington Go Ape – click here for our full review!
Food & Drink
The Explorer Outpost is located on the theme park site itself, around a 5 minute walk from the glamping site – it is flat and wheelchair accessible.
Breakfast was included with your stay, with the choice of cereal, juice, croissants, muffins, tea and coffee, as well as a hot roll. It started early from around 7.30am, which was great for us to be able to take part in our giraffe experience – we also found the staff friendly and helpful.
In the evening, you could visit the Explorer Outpost for dinner. I’m not sure how it works in non-Covid times, however we accessed the menu via a QR code, via which we also paid, and the meal was delivered quickly to the table. We had a very delicious pizza between the two of us!
Theme park access
As part of your stay, not only is theme park access included, but you also had 9-10am as early access to the theme park, meaning you can get on certain rides before they open to the public.
It was amazing and we got on so many rides in that first hour, including the Vampire ride (Lily was very excited to be the exact height, and I was very excited having first gone on it 30 years ago at her age too!) and the Gruffalo ride.
As the day went on, the queues got longer, but we had an amazing time and were super happy to got on so many rides early, then spend time in the zoo and Sea Life centre too.
We had a fantastic time at the Explorer Glamping at Chessington World of Adventures and would definitely go back.
We paid less than £200 for the whole weekend, including our overnight stay, VIP upgrade and theme park tickets, however an alternative theme park we looked at was nearly ten times this for the night, so we thought this was more affordable, especially for a birthday present for Lily.
With most food, the accommodation, entertainment and everything on site, it was just lovely, as well as the excitement of heading early into the theme park to get on so many rides first thing, not to mention our early morning giraffe feeding experience too.
You also have access to the theme park directly from the glamping site, which leads you right onto where the Cobra ride is.
We really would recommend it and would like to thank the staff at Chessington World of Adventures for making Lily’s birthday so special.
Chessington World of Adventures address & postcode
Click here for full directions then follow signs to Explorer Glamping
For more on the Glamping Holidays at Chessington World of Adventures, click here.
Click here to check out our Giraffe Feeding Experience at Chessington World of Adventures.
Click here for our review of Go Ape at Chessington
Click here to check out our top ideas for family staycations