I know the idea of getting the children away from their screens & out into the fresh air is very appealing, but you may be held back by the thought of your wallet getting hit by sky high admission prices and everything that goes with it.
I have put together my top 10 suggestions for you to consider for your own magical day out:
1. Your local country park
Beauty is all around us, whether it be in flowers, the stunning views or the sound of children having fun. The parks offer so many invitations that can transport us as parents to another world. Take along bottles of drinks for the children and maybe some snacks too and let the countryside do the work for you. That way the only pay out for this day should be a fee for parking, if no free parking is available of course.
To help out if there may be some boredom, here are a couple of ideas to help along:
- Tracing trees and leaves. Bring some paper and crayons for this.
- Collecting as many different flowers as possible. And then when you get home, stick them all together to make a memorable picture of your day.
- Bird watching. Let them tell you what type they think they are and take photos to build their knowledge.
2. Crazy golf
Most towns now have an indoor crazy golf course or even better, an outdoor one. It is quite reasonably priced and most sights offer family discount rates. We love doing this, having played several times now, it's been enjoyable every time and there are many funny moments we will all remember.
3. Splash parks or lidos
I understand weather-wise this is one that will depend upon just that but it's a great one when it can happen. The children are happy and you can join in too. Bring waterproof sun cream and bottles of drink too. Meeting up with friends is a great idea as it's more than one set of eyes keeping a look out for the kids. When it comes to water we need to be on extra watch. And don't forget the towels!
4. Local farm yards
I would suggest checking on local farm websites before your visit, as not all will be open to the general public. A lovely day out that also educates the children at the same time. Some farms do allow feeding of their animals which is quite entertaining.
5. A picnic and plane spotting
I am really into plane spotting so for me finding a great spot to sit and eat and watch the planes in the sky is what we do most of the time. The sky tracker app tells you what planes they are and where the destination is. A game of how many planes you spot and guessing what they are is highly recommended. Ever tried spelling your name out with the clouds? Another way to keep the children occupied while awaiting a plane.
Your local pools are now open and prices are fair. Look up their timetable because family fun swims may be available. This can give the children a chance to float around in the rubber ring that's been gathering dust throughout the winter months. At the moment you may need to book a spot so it's best to double check.
7. Pottery painting
Some towns provide a workshop where you pay a nominal fee to enter and you can choose whichever Pottery item you'd like to paint. You then pay for the item to take your artwork home and admire. And best of all your creativity can be as wild as you like. It's always worth checking again if you would need to book a space.
8. Bike rides
I personally don't own a bike but if I did I know we'd be out on them alot. My daughter has her bigger bike now and is always trying to find someone to go and ride with. I remember when I was younger how I was never off my bike, we'd be out all day long. It's free and it's physical exercise both good reasons to make a bike ride happen. Do you own a bike?
9. Dunstable Downs
I completely understand that wherever you may be reading this post from, this magical place won't be possible to get too, but locally I could not recommend it enough. You do have to pay to park but you will find it's worth it. Initially famous for the gliders, it also boasts amazing views. You will find people with their kites here too, the on sight shop does sell them if the children are asking. There are summer family activity days too so check their website before you head off. You can take a nice walk to the small park here too. We have done their fairy trail here. It was a lovely way to spend a couple of hours.
10. Visiting your local library
It may sound old fashioned but most libraries hold interaction days, such as group reading and art projects. It's free to join and free to take books away. Not only are reading books available but audio books, dvds and learning material also.
What days out did you experience during your summer holidays as a child?