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theme parks in london

Guide to Theme Parks and Funfairs in and Near London

July 5, 2023

Are you a thrill-seeker? Do you love the wet and wild? A fan of the teacups? London is the perfect place to stay if you’re in need of a little extra amusement…

With some of the UK’s best theme parks and funfairs, London presents a bunch of adventure parks from pop up fairgrounds to the famous Thorpe Park and the lands of Lego in the neighbouring town, Windsor. Take a look at our tried and tested list to discover a new dimension of roller coaster fun.

Theme Parks and Funfairs – What’s The Difference?

Before we begin, to cater to our international audience, we thought we’d clarify some queries. Whether you are aware or not, there’s a difference between a theme park and a funfair…

What is a theme park?

A theme park, also known as an amusement park, is simply a permanent place where the attraction is made up of rides, such as roller coasters and water rides. They usually contain a selection of shops, restaurants and other themed entertainment features. These attractions are not just for kids, though, but for people of any age.

What is a funfair?

A funfair, also known as a Fair, is a small to medium-sized show that travels around the country or the world. These travelling Fairs are typically comprised of stalls, fun houses and basic flatpack rides so they can pop up all across the country.

Themeparks in and around London

1. Chessington World of Adventure

Chessington World of Adventure is a great place for everyone. Although it’s predominantly a theme park with plenty of rides for all ages, it’s not solely a place of thrilling rides. It is also a Zoo, Sea Life Centre and hosts Live entertainment shows that are entertaining for a wide range of ages and different personal interests. For the ultimate family day out, you’ll want to give Chessington a go!


a group enjoys a rollercoaster in Chessington in London
Source: Chessington

2. Thorpe Park

One of the UK’s most popular Theme Parks, “Thorpe Park is an island like no other!” Just 20 minutes from central London, the park consists of 27 different rides including the dreaded Colossus, the gravity-defying Nemesis, the horror inducing Saw – The Ride, and the silent destroyer Stealth. If you’re a thrill-seeking fanatic, Thorpe Park offers everything you’re looking for with many other rides and attractions for your adrenaline pumping needs.

Not only is it great for those with 0-fear factor, but there is also a whole host of slower and smaller rides for those who aren’t as keen for speed. To put it simply, it’s a great place for a family day out with something for everyone.


an rollercoaster turns a group upside down in London
Source: Virgin Experience Days

3. LEGOLAND, Windsor Resort

Everyone loves playing with Lego, or so we like to think, so why not visit a land where it rules all? See how popular places, imaginary or not, are recreated through the plastic creation that is Lego. You can witness a mini Lego-built London, set of Star Wars or the Kingdom of Atlantis – all great creations to explore as a youngster or admire as an adult.

Once you’ve soaked up some of the structures, you can hope in a Lego go-kart or on a hot summer’s day, cool off with a water ride. There are things to see here like no other theme park, which is probably why it averages 2.2 million visitors per annum.


LegoLand in London
Source: Berks Ankle Biters

Feeling hungry? Check out our guide to all the best cheap places to eat in King’s Cross!

4. London Dungeons

Scare yourself silly at this fantastically themed adventure park. The Dungeon is the ultimate thrill-filled journey through London’s dark and haunted past. With over 1000 years of history to learn about in 90 minutes, the well-trained actors will have you laughing one minute and the next they’ll scare the pants off you.

Within the adventure park, there are mazes, rides, storytelling, special effects and many more entertaining features to sink your teeth into.


artwork representing the London Dungeons
Source: The Dungeons

Clink78 and Clink261 are just a short tube journey away from London Dungeons – book your stay now!

5. Go Ape at Trent Park

For high flying forest fun, Go Ape is the best place to visit. Being the number one forest adventure park, it’s all about living life adventurously and getting back with your inner tree swinger.

You can fly down zip wires, leap out of trees or tackle the dangerous crossings, all with the amazing scenery of the forest around you. Plus for any nervous parents or carers, join the youngsters and challenge your inner bravery. Get over any fears of heights in a safe and enjoyable way.


people doing activities in Trent Park
Source: Go Ape

6. Harry Potter Studios

People all over the world love the Harry Potter films and books. Hence, Harry Potter Studios have seen people all over the world come and visit them to walk around Hogwarts, meet Hagrid and use a magical wand.

This Warner Brothers Studio shows you many of the animatronics and sets from each of the films so you can really immerse yourself in everything wizard. You might even get the chance to take a ride on a broomstick and truly feel like you are a part of the Harry Potter world.


The Harry Potter Experience in London
Source: Tour Scanner

Funfairs in and around London

If you’re not into the totally-daunting twists, turns and loop-de-loops that you get with roller coasters, funfairs might be more to your taste. Funfairs in London aren’t hard to find. They often pop up on a monthly basis throughout the capital, every year.

Particularly in summer, there’s usually a fair with inflatables, a fun, charity event or similar for you to get involved with. Plus, if you’re big into your festivals, you’ll know that a Ferris wheel, “Earth Shaker” or “The Waltzers” are the plus one equivalent in the amusement ride scene.

Find a funfair in London

As fairgrounds are usually nomadic, it’s best to browse this up-to-date list to find a funfair in London that’ll suit your visiting times and location.

Now you’ve got a better idea of the best theme parks in London you can head to this busy UK capital to get your fix of adventure park fun.

Make a weekend of it and come stay with us at Clink261. Contact us today for more information on the latest deals