October half-term seems to be all about Halloween-themed activities and days out. The girls loved trying out the “Howl’o’ween” attractions at Chessington World of Adventures last year. This year, it was Sophie who donned her sister’s “rainbow witch” outfit for a day out at Chessington. I was glad she picked that costume. It felt like a little link to last year and another little way to carry Jessica with us on our day out.
One of the things I love about Chessington World of Adventures is the mix of attractions for all ages. Their spooky Howl’o’ween event is no exception. The bat rating is a useful guide to show how scary attractions are. We went for attractions that were two bats or less as these were the most appropriate for Sophie.
As always though, our first port of call was the Gruffalo River Ride Adventure. This is definitely Sophie’s favourite ride at Chessington and thankfully is one of the few that Thomas can go on too.
One of our favourite books was brought to life in the Room on the Broom story time. I loved how some of the children in the audience took on the parts of some of the animals in the story. There was a meet and greet with the witch afterwards. Sophie enjoyed posing for a photo with the witch who seemed very impressed with Sophie’s rainbow witch outfit!
Hocus Pocus Hall has been a favourite of ours for a while. Next year, it will be turned into a new attraction so we made sure we had one last visit before it changes. I’m looking forward to trying out Room on the Broom: A Magical Journey here in Spring 2019.
After stopping for lunch at the Smokehouse BBQ, we made our way to the Trick or Treat Woods. This was our longest queue of the day at around 40 minutes. We were taken on a journey through the woods, encountering fauns, fairies and spiders along the way. Sophie found all the different characters we met fascinating rather than frightening. I think they could be a little scary for younger or more timid children though. The children each received a treat at the end of the woods.
Sophie usually loves riding on a giraffe on the Adventure Tree carousel. This time though she went for a ride in a spinning cup with Mummy and Thomas. We got quite dizzy trying to spin the cup as fast as we could!
Next up was the Haunted Howl’o’ween Live show. This spooky themed show with its dance routines to songs such as Monster Mash, Black Magic and Thriller was a big hit with Sophie. She was soon dancing along to it all. I loved the way the cast appeared from among the audience at the start of the show and the slick transitions between the songs.
The fancy dress competition took place after the show. The children paraded around the arena doing zombie and werewolf poses before four finalists were picked to go up on the stage. The audience were then encouraged to clap and cheer for their favourite finalist and the one who got the loudest response was declared the winner. All the children taking part received a Howl’o’ween pop badge. Sophie wasn’t one of the finalists, but she loved taking part and was very happy with her pop badge.
The children’s zoo was another highlight of the day for Sophie. She loved seeing the pigs and being able to stroke the pygmy goats.
Watching Sophie running around over my head in the nets at the Amazu Treetop Adventure play area was bittersweet. There are memories of Jessica everywhere we go at Chessington but every so often one particular memory will jump out at me and make my heart ache just that little bit more. This time it was remembering our first visit this year, sitting in the same spot as I watched both my girls running through those nets. I remember feeling so happy that Jessica had the energy to join her sister up there. Sophie always had enough energy for both of them!
Once Sophie had burned off a little of that energy, we were ready for some quieter activity and a visit to the Sealife Centre to see the fish. Sophie particularly enjoyed stroking a starfish and looking out for the numbered snails in the Snail and the Whale trail.
We finished off our day with another ride on the Gruffalo River Ride Adventure which had a much shorter queue than earlier in the day. This time Thomas was awake for it. I think it was the first time he hadn’t sleep through it all and he seemed to be quite happy looking around as we rode our boat through the deep, dark wood.
Despite being very restricted on rides due to baby Thomas, we managed to fit plenty of activities into our day out. There were many more that we could have done too. Sophie had such a fun day and enjoyed all the Howl’o’ween attractions. I have to admit that I’m quite glad she is still too little for the scarier ones. I’m not sure I’m brave enough for the four-bat rated ones myself!
Visiting Chessington World of Adventures – what you need to know:
Chessington World of Adventures
Chessington World of Adventures is open late on selected dates for Howl’o’ween which runs from 13th October 2018 – 4th November 2018.
Opening times vary throughout the year. For more information click here.
I am a Chessington Blogger Ambassador, I was given a Chessington Annual Pass to do this review with my family and I was not paid to do this post. If anyone would like to confirm any details in the post, please email firstname.lastname@example.org