It’s early January, the weather is – well, very British – and you are already thinking about taking a break from work and school runs. We know just how you feel, so we’ve put together a list of great family days out, helping you get out and discover more on your February half term getaway – which really isn’t too far away.
When you book a half term break in the forest, you’ll find plenty to do with the family. Cycling, den building, Forest Ranger adventures, and so on, all within walking distance of your cabin. But there’s so much to discover in the local area too, and we’ve picked out some of our favourites so that you don’t miss out.
When you stay at either of our forest locations of Ardgartan Argyll or Strathyre, you’ll be spoilt for choice when it comes to walking through the breath-taking landscapes. Children, though, are not always as keen on long rambling walks as their parents. Until now.
Visit the Loch Lomond Faerie Trail and discover a little more about woodland magic. A fantastic day of exploration for children, and stunning views for parents, you’ll return to your cabin even more in love with the wilds of Scotland.
Visit our cabins at Keldy or Cropton in the North York Moors and there is so much to do, it’s hard to pick just one day out. There’s the Sea Life Sanctuary at Scarborough or a ride on a real steam engine to Goathland, the setting for Hogsmeade Station in the Harry Potter films.
For a day of family-focused fun, we love Flamingo Land... After a morning of thrills and excitement in the swimming pool and leisure centre, enjoy a slightly calmer afternoon in the zoo and conservation area.
The award-winning GreenWood Family Park opens in February just for half term, so it’s important to check the dates of your visit. Here you can ride the world’s only people powered roller coaster, try the enchanting river ride or get splashed on the first solar powered water ride in the UK, before zipping down the 70 metre Sledge Run.
Some of the rides are miniaturised for smaller children, and there’s a large indoor play area that stays open all year round. After a busy day out, you’ll be pleased to sink into your comfortable hot tub at Beddgelert for a well deserved rest.
In the heart of the country, deep inside Sherwood Forest, you’ll find a troupe of unusual monkeys, zipping across wires or bouncing between nets. We’re talking, of course, about Go Ape, the treetop adventure for anyone with a head for heights.
But if you’re not sure that ziplines are right for you, then Sherwood Pines is one of only two Go
Ape locations in the UK with the new Nets Kingdom – an amazing, springy play zone for adults and children from ages one and up. Bounce across space, roll about in the giant inflatable balls and slide down to the ground, all in completely enclosed netting.
Sometimes you just need a little more adrenaline – and what better way to find it than in a fight to save the world from a zombie invasion? Take your family to Combat Paintball near Thorpe Forest, and work as a team to gather supplies in the spooky zombie infested graveyard. Will your team survive the apocalypse?
Although we tend to think of family days out as being times for adventure and activity, there’s always room for some history as well. Visit the National Motor Museum at Beaulieu for one of the finest collection of cars and motorcycles in the world.
Fans of the family classic Chitty Chitty Bang Bang will love the current exhibition, full of props and costumes from the movie, and you may even see the four-wheeled stars themselves driving around the grounds. Of course, after that you’ll need to head back to your cabin at Blackwood Forest for a family movie night to watch the film itself.
South West England
Of all the places to explore near the Forest of Dean, Puzzlewood remains a firm favourite. Meandering paths, clambering rocks and wandering tree formations – it’s clear why the location has been used for filming scenes in Doctor Who, Merlin and more. If you are looking for the route to Middle Earth, this must be the place to start.
Cornwall is renowned for the variety of family days out on offer. The Eden Project is a must see, and there are miles of beaches and coastline to explore for a day at the seaside. For something a little different though, how about a boat ride across a magical underground lake, in an old slate mine. The Carnglaze Caverns is the ideal family trip for wet and windy February days, and it’s only a short drive from your cabin at Deerpark.
Now is the time to book yourself a half term break. It’s one more thing ticked off – a great start on your New Year Resolution to be more organised – and something to look forward to as we head into winter proper.