I don’t know about you, but I have a list of sure-fire ways to keep the kids entertained, whether that’s a day out, a few hours or even a weekend or longer. But what makes it to the top of my list for guaranteed family fun? Take a look:
So much fun it deserves a category all of its own. When I was a kid I remember visiting Bognor with family and walking along the beach. From behind a big wall I heard what sounded like a fairground, there was laughing, music, kids shrieking in excitement and I was desperate to get in there myself. I was literally climbing the walls to get a peek at what was going on behind them and couldn’t believe my eyes when I saw it was infact a huge holiday resort with tons going on. It was of course the legendary Butlin’s.
These days it’s a thousand times better than it was back then and it makes a fantastic day out, weekend or week away with the kids and is somewhere kids of all ages will enjoy (even us adult sized kids – 80’s/90’s weekender anyone!?!). You can Save £20 on 2015 Butlins Breaks with this voucher code – expires: 28/02/15, making it an even better option for a holiday this year.
I’m a huge history geek and absolutely love visiting historic properties. My love of all things history has rubbed off on the kids and they too enjoy a day out at a castle or historic estate. The little one being three thinks castles are magical places with kings and queens, knights and princesses and maybe a few elves and fairies thanks to watching Ben & Holly’s Little Kingdom and despite my reluctance to take him inside them incase he breaks anything, he actually seems quite interested in what’s going on, especially the suits of armour and anything he recognises from the cartoons he watches. The teen is a little more interested in the history side of things like me and of course if we manage to visit a castle with a great playground in the grounds, they’re both happy.
Being from Kent we’re lucky to have been surrounded by some of the most amazing castles in the UK and we’re real fans of Hever Castle (the water maze here is brilliant for kids), Penshurst Place (the adventure playground here goes through the trees and is pretty amazing), Leeds Castle with its two great playgrounds, one of which is shaped like a castle, maze and underground grotto, not to mention the falconry as well as the amazing Tower of London just a short train ride away. There are lots of other castles around the UK like Warwick, Ludlow and Edinburgh that we’re dying to visit too.
The teen is our very own eco warrior and loves nothing more than being among animals. She is a member of the RSPB and often visits the Dungeness Wildlife Reserve with her nan and grandad quite a bit. You can also often find her elbow deep in mud building homes for bugs in the garden or rescuing animals – remember the kitten she brought home from school one day that she found after it was thrown over the fence? She is now 4 months old and off to her forever home next week! The little one also loves animals. His interest is more instant – he sees the animals at a zoo and moves on to the next within seconds, whereas the teen will linger, reading all about the animals and watching them move, eat etc (it’s a nightmare taking them both at the same time as you can imagine).
Our favourite places to see animals have got to be Howletts and Port Lympne which are both run by the Aspinall Foundation, London Zoo and Longleat. But there are other smaller places like Eagle Heights, Wildwood and Longdown Dairy Farm (this one’s our favourite in the New Forest) that are well worth a visit.
So there you have it, our top picks for family fun. Do you have anywhere to recommend?
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