If you follow us on social media you will have noticed that we were guests of Chessington last weekend, invited along for the press opening of Tiger Rock, Chessington’s revamped and hugely made-over water ride (formerly Dragon Falls) which is set within the multi-million pound Land of the Tiger, a new addition to the park which features an innovative enclosure and Europe’s first overhead trails.
We arrived a little late thanks to the British weather and traffic issues but were quickly showing to our tent which would be out home for the night, glamping at Chessington is something the kids have been asking to do ever since it opened, sadly glamping in torrential rain wasn’t much fun and we all absolutely froze and were unable to warm up all night with the kids jumping into my bed in a bid to keep warm – thankfully the bell tents do house a double bed and 2 singles as well as electricity and WiFi so it wasn’t all bad.
Wild Asia was open to us in the evening, with the Kobra ride, the Monkey swings and the Jungle Bus open for us to ride as many times as we wished – the kids desperate to try the Kobra for the first time came off crying ‘never again’ but that was shorted lived and they did want to go on again the following day. Dinner was served buffet style in the Explorers Outpost along with live music and animals for the kids to meet. Breakfast was also served here.
This newest attraction is now home to four endangered Amur Tigers – Kalinda, Kyra, Olga and Tsar who you can learn more about as you wander through this park of the park, see up close through the glass screens and watch frolic in their spacious enclosures, play in their pools or pass over your head in the overhead trail.
Take your time and spend some time with these wonderful animals and if you can do try to catch one of the two feeding times a day.
You can wander around freely to see these impressive animals but should you wish to learn even more about them then make sure you head over to the tented area where you can hear talks from the keepers and ask questions.
Making your way around to the entrance of the new Tiger Rock ride you pass through the ‘village’ which retains main elements of it’s original oriental theme, it now has a much more updated theme of a Chinese fireworks festival with very details paintings, Chinese lanterns, bunting an music playing
The ride itself s completely transformed from the former Dragon Falls and there is something to look at and enjoy all the way through the station as you queue for your boat, including a stunning feature wall which has a tiger scene in silhouette backlit by feature lighting with a show sequence running around every 5 minutes.
Each boat can seat up to 5 people with the minimum height restriction of 1.2m – Harry aged 5 is now tall enough to ride these rides with us all and along with Emmy didn’t want to get off this one – in fact we rode on a loop several times, of course ending up rather wet.
You are able to see the Tigers in their new home as you ride before plummeting the 15ft down emerging through the tigers mouth a little wetter than when you started, well it is a water ride after all, I would suggest wearing a rain mac if you don’t want to be soggy all day (unless summer has finally arrived and you want to cool down!) or you can dry of inside one of the walk in driers if you prefer.
You exit through the Tiger gift shop where you will find Tiger themed gifts from soft toys to clothes etc, the kids managed to persuade me that the HAD to have a soft toy and a hat – which actually was pretty good going as they usually ask for half the shop – -although they did try to ask me to buy them something in every single gift shop we exited through during the day which is no surprise (they failed to win that battle though).
This new part of the part opens fully to the public on 5th May and I can see it being hugely popular.
Disclaimer: 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 details in the post, please email firstname.lastname@example.org