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Fun Things to Do in Chelmsford

Published on: 20/03/2024

Looking for a green escape and a breath of fresh air just outside of London? Whether you’re after a cultural day out, a fun event or an outdoor high ropes adventure, Chelmsford has everything you need.

There are so many fun things to do in Chelmsford, from high ropes adventures to cultural excursions and natural explorations. You’ll be spoilt for choice and entertained for hours in this ultimate daycation destination.

Adventurous activities for everyone

Go Ape Chelmsford 

Woman in orange on Go Ape zipline | Fun Things to Do in Chelmsford for Adults


Prepare for an unforgettable adventure at one of Go Ape’s newest locations, in Hylands Park!

Go Ape Chelmsford features three high ropes experiences for everyone over 1m tall! From high velocity ziplines to free-fall Tarzan Swing and tricky tree top obstacles, our courses push you outside of your comfort zone and create unforgettable experiences.

Book now, for the hottest adventure in town, providing challenging outdoor experiences for everyone from 4 years to 94.


Explore Hylands Estate

Hylands Estate house | Fun Things to Do in Chelmsford for Adults

Photo Credit: Adam Crowe

Hylands Estate is a prestigious Grade II listed public park encompassing 574 acres of historic parkland including recreational ancient woodland, grassland, lakes, ponds and gardens. There is a beautifully restored Neo-Classical villa house within the grounds as well as an award-winning accessible adventure playground for children. The Stables houses a café, second hand bookshop, information point, and resident artist studios.

Hylands Estate also hosts a range of seasonal events both within the House and the Park, including festivals, shows and arts events.

Mystery Treasure Trails


Chelmsford is home to the exciting Mystery Treasure Trails, a unique outdoor activity that combines adventure, problem-solving, and sightseeing. Embark on a self-guided treasure hunt through the city, following clues and solving mysteries along the way. It's a great way to explore Chelmsford while testing your detective skills.

Chelmsford's Natural Beauty

RHS Garden Hyde Hall

RHS Hyde Hall | Fun Things to Do in Chelmsford for Adults

Photo Credit: Daniel Bridge, RHS 

Take a deep breath of flower-scented air at the beautiful RHS Garden Hyde Hall in Chelmsford, Essex. This 365-acre site is one of the finest gardens in the East of England with stunning panoramic views. It’s a drop of tranquillity with a diverse mix of garden styles from traditional to modern. There is free parking, a cafe, restaurant, children's play area, gift shop, and garden centre.

Enjoy the River Chelmer

River Chelmer in Chelmsford | Fun Things to Do in Chelmsford for Adults

Photo Credit: Chelmsford City Council 

The winding River Chelmer runs through Chelmsford and is a peaceful spot for walkers, cyclists, and anglers. The river begins at Chelmsford and stretches 14 miles to the tidal estuary at Heybridge Basin. Formerly a canal, it was used for transporting coal, corn and timber until the 1970s and the pathway is steeped in history.

There is an easy 6.1-km circular (1.5hour) trail which is great for hiking, running, and walking. You can even canoe, paddleboard or go angling on the River Chelmer, though certain activities do require licenses.  

Chelmsford's History and Culture

Chelmsford Museum

Chelmsford Museum | Fun Things to Do in Chelmsford for Adults

Photo credit: Chelmsford City Council

Located in the heart of the beautiful Oaklands Park, Chelmsford Museum brings the city’s history to life from the Stone Age to the present day. Discover mammoth remains, medieval treasures, Victorian Artefacts, 20th-century fashion and more through a range of fascinating and interactive displays.

The museum also features an extensive collection of objects by Chelmsford native and one of the UK’s most revered artists, Sir Grayson Perry

Chelmsford Cathedral

Chelmsford Cathedral | Fun Things to Do in Chelmsford for Adults

Photo Credit: Jennifer Fage


Built in the C11th, Chelmsford Cathedral is a stunning gothic cathedral. Set among lush grounds, the cathedral is open to the public and is a popular tourist destination. Take a free tour, attend an event or relax in the stunning gardens.

Fun fact, there are two organs in the cathedral, which are linked together so that they can be played at the same time.

Chelmsford Theatre

Chelmsford Theatre | Fun Things to Do in Chelmsford for Adults

Photo credit: Aaron Crowe 


Only a short walk from Chelmsford train and bus station in the city centre, Chelmsford Theatre hosts everything from comedy shows to live gigs and touring productions. The venue boasts two auditoriums, multiple pre-show and interval bars, as well as a dedicated daytime café.’ Find out What’s On now.

The theatre is also surrounded by a mix of restaurants and bars perfect for either before or after shows.

Grab a drink and a bite to eat

Chelmsford town centre | Fun Things to Do in Chelmsford for Adults

Photo Credit: Jennifer Fage

A classic historic English city, there’s a relative buffet of culinary cuisines in Chelmsford! From traditional pubs and alehouses to quirky independent restaurants and high-end dining, there’s something for everyone.

Find Your Next Adventure at Go Ape Chelmsford

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Hylands Park forest | Fun Things to Do in Chelmsford for Adults