Hangloose Bluewater: Riding the Longest Zip Wire in England | Kent
Just across the Essex border in Kent is the longest zip wire in England! Located at Hangloose Bluewater, as well as zip lining, visitors can enjoy several other attractions such as the largest giant swing in Europe and the UK’s only outdoor skydive machine! Here’s what to expect when you visit the Bluewater zip line!
Bluewater Skywire Stats – The Longest Zip Wire In England
Flight Duration: approximately 45 seconds
Arriving & Checking In At Hangloose Bluewater
When we arrived at Bluewater we were surprised by the lack of signage for Hangloose. There is literally no signs for it until you are pretty much on top of it! It shares a car park with the shopping centre, the closest one is the Village Car Park. You can park in the others but it would be a bit of a walk!
Once you get to Hangloose you’ll see 2 giant wooden domes alongside the quarry cliffs. There’s an outside viewing area, toilets and then the main reception dome. We pre-booked a time but they were happy for us to check-in a bit earlier, as it wasn’t too busy.
During check-in everyone gets weighed but it is displayed via a code rather than an actual figure. This is to help the instructors know the safest way to send you down the zip wire. It can change depending on the weather! My group were all hoping that we would be able to ride it with our arms out like a bird. But unfortunately because we are all on the lower side of the weight limit, we had to keep our arms behind our backs to make ourselves more aerodynamic!
There are free lockers that can be used to store valuables. Phones are allowed to be taken at your own risk, as long as they are kept in a front pocket during the flight. Personal GoPros can also be used when attached to a chest or head mount. I don’t have a head mount so took my chest mount, however, it does mean that it was facing directly down towards the ground while on the zip line!
Riding The Skywire Bluewater
Everyone is kitted out with a body harness and helmet. There are no jumpsuits at Hangloose. Riders are required to wear trousers or shorts that are past the knee, a top that covers shoulders and secure shoes. The zip wire runs in most weather, so make sure to dress for the weather too!
After watching a short safety video we were taken in a minibus to the launch tower. Access is via stairs, so be prepared to walk to the top of the tower wearing all the gear!
There are 4 zip wires in a line. If you are in a group, they do their best to send down people together so you can race! My group only had 3 people, so the 4th line was left empty. Being attached to the zip line at Hangloose isn’t quite as comfortable as the Zip World Wales set up. Similar to Zip World in North Wales, the flying position is laying facedown and head first. They only have a wooden platform that you have to lay on, in comparison there’s a padded one at Zip World! During this time, the instructor will tell you your flying position.
It’s also possible to book Skywire Inverse, where riders can choose to ride feet first rather than headfirst!
The Hangloose sister site at the Eden Project in Cornwall has the fastest zip wire in England. However Bluewater’s is longer at 724m with riders reaching speeds of 60mph. It takes approximately 45 seconds to go down the zip line, with the last bit flying over the lake!
Landing can be a bit abrupt! It does jolt you a bit as you hit the stopper at the end! The harness and helmet are removed on the finishing platform. From here, depending on what experiences you have booked, you either return to the reception or go straight to the next activity! For me it was on to the Giant Swing!
Giant Swing Bluewater
Giant swings remain firmly at the top as my all time favourite adrenaline activity. I’ve been on 5 now across the world! The Bluewater Giant Swing is currently the biggest giant swing in Europe. It’s 50m high and reaches speeds of 50mph. Riders also experience a weightless feeling during the free fall!
The giant swing has 5 swing seats attached to a giant metal beam. Of course riders are clipped in at multiple different points. During my visit, my party of 3 were paired up with a dad and his young daughter…so keep this in mind if you have a bit of a bad mouth!
The staff operating the swing were great fun. They winched us up to the top in a couple of different stages to add to the suspense and then began a countdown from 100! I personally love the free fall feeling! I was a bit worried about smacking my face on the beam, but it was fine. It does obscure the view a little bit if you are on the shorter side though! You are also asked to hold on to the handles while being winched up, but once it drops you can let go.
Having been on many zip lines around the world, I think the swing is the better attraction out of the two! It definitely takes the adrenaline up an extra notch!
Hangloose Aerodium –
The Aerodium at Hangloose is the UK’s only outdoor skydive machine. Essentially it looks like a giant trampoline with the net around it, and has a big powerful fan positioned underneath it. Instructors stand alongside you during flights to help keep you in the correct position. It can be a bit of a strange feeling as you have to keep your head up as well as keeping the correct body shape!
Visitors as young as 4 years old are able to participate!
Bluewater Zip Wire Price
The Skywire at Bluewater starts from £40 per person. I bought a 2 activity package for the swing and the zip line that cost £70. It took around 90 minutes to complete the 2 together. To do all 3 activities cost from £95 per person. Buying the activities as part of a package can save you a bit of money.
Bluewater Shopping Centre
🗺Bluewater Pkwy, Dartford, Greenhithe DA9 9ST
Bluewater Shopping Centre has over 300 shops and 50 places to eat and drink. There are 13,000 free parking spaces. It’s located just off the M25 and the Dartford Crossing. Don’t forget that when travelling from Essex, the Dartford Crossing toll charge is in place from 6am until 10pm. Each crossing is £2.50 and is paid online (can be paid in advance or up until midnight the day after travel).
Bluewater is 40 minutes from London and is best accessed by car or bus. So if you are looking for a London zip line experience, Hangloose could be worth checking out!