The summer holidays are a great time to bond with your kids and encourage them to try out new activities. Most areas of the UK have plenty going on - but working out exactly what to do, can be a bit of challenge. If you’re struggling for inspiration, we've got some great ideas to get you started below, including a few for when the weather's not so good.
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The UK has some amazing national parks and areas of natural beauty that offer a variety of walks and trails for all abilities. You don’t always want to travel far for a walk, especially if you have young children. Quite often your local council will have a list of walks in the surrounding areas on their website. Another good resource to use is the Woodland Trust. They have an easy to use postcode search that brings up local woodlands and lots of ideas for activities.
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A great activity to do as a family or with a group of friends, mountain biking is the perfect mix of exercise and excitement. And if you have a toddler, you can use always use a trailer or tow-bar.
‘We are Cycling UK’ is an excellent resource for route guides, maintenance tips and advice on how to teach your kids essential cycling skills. For slightly more challenging single track paths ‘Trailforks’ host a comprehensive trail finder service.
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To find out what events are being organised in your local area over the summer hols visit the National Trust website. Remember you don’t necessarily have to have a full membership; quite often you can pay a one-off entrance fee for the particular event or location you wish to visit..
Outdoor Activity Centres
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Outdoor activity centres are dotted across the UK and offer a range of activities including high ropes courses, water sports and much more. These centres will quite often offer activities more suitable for teenagers rather than younger children.
Skiing/ Snowboarding Taster Session
Why not have a go at skiing or snowboarding and see if it’s something your little ones want to pursue further. The Ski Club of Great Britain has a list of all of the dry slopes, indoor centres and ski resorts across the UK.
What if it's raining?
In the UK we are blessed with many things, but good weather is not one of them. Having a few backup ideas if the weather takes a turn for the worst is always a good plan.
Strength, flexibility and problem-solving in a safe environment. Climbing or bouldering is a great sport to try out over half-term, and the UK boasts some excellent facilities. With the inclusion of the sport into the 2020 Olympics, funding for the sport and facilities is only going to get better. The Climbing Academy (with facilities in Glasgow and Bristol) boasts some of the best indoor bouldering the UK has to offer and has a range of courses on offer, including family induction sessions.
Image Source: MCC
At our Castleford store we have high ropes, bouldering and a climbing wall with expert instructors on hand providing lessons and supervision. Kids' coaching is also available and is designed to introduce new climbers to the basics: belaying, bouldering, climbing techniques and key safety aspects.
If you are Manchester based MCC (Manchester Climbing Centre), offer family taster sessions and courses for kids only - Little Monkeys 5 - 6 years, Rock It Club 7 – 11 years and Hang Time 11 – 17 years.
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There has been an explosion in the number of trampolining centres across the UK. These centres offer a multitude of activities including dodgeball, freestyle training and more – it’s a great way for the kids to have fun and exercise at the same time.
Museums and Galleries
Almost all of the national museums and galleries in the UK are free to enter. They often host interactive activities and events over the holidays to keep the little ones entertained.