The best amusement parks in Great Britain

Burn off excess energy on an endless rollercoaster, build a city out of Lego or surrender to the magic of the 'Harry Potter' universe. Everything is possible in this selection of British theme parks.

Chessington World of Adventures Resort, the first of its kind

It was the first amusement park to open in Great Britain (1987), and enthralls over two million visitors every year. Located south of London, Chessington has a zoo, with more than 1,000 exotic animals, and two hotels. This theme park spans ten areas, comprising the Market Square, which is the heart of the park; the Mexican area, which includes the Scorpion Express (the dreaded rollercoaster that has fire and water effects); and Wild Asia, with fun rides such as Kobra and Monkey Swinger. In the Temple of Mayhem, children can shoot foam balls and have lots of fun.

Chessington World, the first amusement park to be opened in the UK.
Chessington World, the first amusement park to be opened in the UK. © VisitBritain

 

Vertiginous loops in Oakwood Theme Park

What started as a small family park (in Pembrokeshire, Wales) with a 3D cinema and a karting circuit, has grown to become a must-see for those seeking adventure. It now has five long rollercoasters, including Megafobia, considered one of the best wooden roller coasters in Europe, with terrific speed and a 97 degree tilt, making it the steepest roller coaster in the UK.

 

A complete adventure in Alton Towers

Alton Towers is an ideal park for a family getaway. Located in Staffordshire, the resort features two hotels and an Enchanted Village with wooden houses, reminiscent of scenes from 'The Lord of the Rings'. Families can also stay in tree-houses or themed rooms, decorated with ice or games. The park has fun rides and new rollercoasters, including Galactica, which features virtual reality. It is the most visited theme park in the UK.

The Smiler, the first rollercoaster with 14 loops, in Alton Towers.
The Smiler, the first rollercoaster with 14 loops, in Alton Towers. © VisitBritain

 

Visiting the penguins in Folly Farm Adventure Park and Zoo

This Welsh park, located in Pembrokeshire, has more than 200 different animal species. It is one of the preferred places for families to engage in all kinds of activities. It is home to camels, lemurs, lions, rhinos, and giraffes. One of the children’s favourite areas is the Penguin Coast, with Humboldt penguins from South America. In recent years, Folly Farm has been chosen as the best place in Wales for a day outdoors.

Penguins are one of the main attractions of Folly Farm.
Penguins are one of the main attractions of Folly Farm. © VisitBritain

 

Everything is possible in Legoland

A Boeing 747, the Crown Jewels of the United Kingdom, the Big Ben, the Eiffel Tower, the Tower of Pisa, Loch Ness, the list goes on…In Miniland, one of the most visited areas of the Legoland theme park in Windsor, you can see numerous famous monuments of the world, built with more than 40 million Lego blocks. It is no wonder that this theme park is the second most visited in the UK. And it’s not just figures and structures; it also features a mini golf area, slides, a theatre and a driving school, where children can drive cars made of Lego.

Children can play with the Buckingham Palace, built out of Lego blocks.
Children can play with the Buckingham Palace, built out of Lego blocks. © VisitBritain

 

Thorpe Park, a theme park for experts

Surrounded by water, Thorpe Park looks like an island with impressive rides and rollercoasters. It is often visited by theme park enthusiasts. Located just outside London between Chertsey and Staines, Thorpe Park has unique rides such as The Swarm, the first super-fast rollercoaster in the UK. Almost one kilometre long, with five loops (spins), it thrills riders with speeds close to 100 km/h. What's more, they have to endure 4.5 times the force of gravity! Colossus, Nemesis Inferno and The Ride are other serious rollercoasters you won’t want to miss!.

 

See all things Harry Potter at the WB Studio Tour

Opened by the Warner Brothers in London, these studios are dedicated to the 'Harry Potter' universe. In recent years, this has become a mandatory visit, and the place is always full. Visitors can get into Hogwarts and see the costumes and original objects used by actors over the eight films of the series. The feeling is like entering one of the films, with the original sets of emblematic places such as Privet Drive or Diagon Alley. The store is yet another universe to explore: you can find almost any object from the saga you ever dreamt of, even wands!

The dukes of Cambridge and Prince Harry in the 'Harry Potter' Studios.
The dukes of Cambridge and Prince Harry in the 'Harry Potter' Studios. © TM & Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc. Harry Potter Publishing Rights

 

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