Howloween was back to send Chessington out with a bang in 2017 with the scariest maze EVER coming to the park in the form of Creepy Caves Unearthed the new fill attraction from the old Creepy Caves. Also joining was the return of Curse of the lost Tomb, Trick or Treat Woods and the new story time of Room on a Broom.
Room on a Broom was the story time located on the Pandemonium stage an area we are expecting to be empty in 2018 it was simple a story area from the Room on a Broom book which is from the same author as The Gruffalo so makes sense it being at the park for this Halloween. For the little ones this is located next to the Trick or Treat woods.
Trick or Treat is a story walk though and the story mazes is something that Chessington are very good at, Trick or Treat Woods is very much aimed at the young visitor 2 to 6, for an adult its really not that entertaining. Once inside you will be greeted and decided if you go down the Trick or Treat route where you will meet two actors along the way who will tell you a story and give you various tasks to do. Now whilst this is a family attraction for me there was to much focus on getting the adults to participate taking away from the activities for the children, lets get this very straight there is little for the adults in this attraction. I feel given the other mazes at the park this should exclusively be aimed at the young visitors I actually found one of the actors quite rude on my refusal to keep hopping on one leg in mud after rain. Fun for the little ones and a good moving queue means you won’t wait long.
Curse of the Lost Tomb has been at the park for a couple of year now and is another story maze only set in more darker, slight scarier environment. As people go missing looking for the treasure you follow into the footsteps in what could be Chessington’s most fun maze since Hocus Pocus. A few activities along the way all of which the children can participate in this maze is aimed at 8 plus, this is due to the dark scenes through out. A real entertaining experience which can be enjoyed by all with some good stories, sets and interaction along the way.
New for 2017 was Creepy Caves Unearthed a maze that replaced the Reptile house which closed at the end of last year. There is no doubt the Reptile house is missed but there is also no doubt that its likely to come back once you have been through this maze. Creepy Caves Unearthed is set for 10 plus and rightfully so, and argument that maybe 12 could be thrown in as this was equally as scary as some of the Thorpe Park mazes this year. The biggest surprise of 2017 Creepy Caves was a pay maze of £6 to stop everyone queuing for it, time slots (which didn’t work well) you enter from the top and make your way down to the Creepy Caves, a story of experiments and an intense scene with the doctors sets you off into the maze.
A maze with dark spots, dead bodies and strobe lights is something that would have passed at the other top haunts parks as Chessington really stepped up the efforts to finally cater for all the family and not just the under 8’s. A intense ending adding to the show and it was an excellent maze. Sure there were tears, through put was slow but this is something the park can work on as hopefully it does return for 2018. Better warnings and more actors would help the story flow quicker but a massive thumbs up from us.
There was much better theme around the park, entrances, loads of glow in the dark eyes and a few theme patches in Adventure Point and Wild Woods. No Tree in Adventure Point which was a real shame and of course more can be done to theme up the park and add some street entertainment. Lets not forget the lighting as Chessington excels in lighting the park and it looked spectacular as always, nothing will beat Vampire in the dark!