The Easter holidays are fast approaching, it’s one of the first times in the year that people really have a chance to go somewhere and see more of the world.
If you’re looking for things to do with the kids this Easter, or you’re thinking about going on a road trip over the bank holiday weekends we’re looking forward to in May, we’ve got some great ideas for places to visit and things to do.
At Easter, spring has truly sprung, the weather should be good and it’s a fantastic opportunity to get out into nature and take in some incredible views. Luckily, the UK has tonnes of national parks and areas of outstanding natural beauty to visit.
With breathtakingly beautiful scenery, serene lakes, plenty of places to eat, museums, galleries, activities, and places to stay, the Lake District is bursting with options for during Easter.
Whether you want to explore the history of the area and some of its famous residents like Beatrix Potter by visiting her house, the gallery of her work or the Beatrix Potter Experience in Windermere.
If you fancy more fresh air or doing something leisurely why not relax on a boat trip on one of the lakes or if you want to cut out the cost of entry entirely go for a hike or have a picnic surrounded by incredible scenery.
From big tourism hotspots like Keswick and Windermere to quiet hikes in the hills and more out-of-the-way areas, the Lake District is also home to fantastic driving roads, perfect for a road trip. Just be sure to check ahead for any road closures or issues with traffic as it does get busy.
If you fancy heading east instead of west, the Yorkshire Dales, and the Pennines. Whether you’re stopping for lunch in a sleepy village or heading out to explore a historic market town, there’s loads to do in the Dales.
If you’re a fan of astronomy the Nidderdale Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty is a designated Dark Sky Discovery Site, and the whole Yorkshire Dales National Park is an International Dark Sky Reserve.
That means it’s one of the best places in the world to look at the night sky as there’s hardly any light pollution. So, you could go on a camping trip to the Dales and just lay outside staring at the sky, or go on one of the many stargazing events across the area.
What if you don’t like the idea of sleeping in a tent? You could visit Skipton, York or Harrogate, historic market towns that are known for their architecture, cafes and places to eat, alongside castles and other attractions, they’re perfect for much more sedate weekends away, or places to take the dog for a walk.
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If you’re further south and want to head out into the countryside, you can’t go wrong with the Cotswolds. A perfect place for hiking, a picnic, taking in some of the Roman history or even doing a bit of fossil hunting.
If you have young children and want to get out in the fresh air and do something a bit out of the ordinary you can visit Fairytale Farm, this is a great place for kids to explore for a few hours. The farm combines what you’d expect with a more fantastical experience with fairies and mermaids.
A top tip if you’re planning to go is to book online, tickets bought through their website work out a little bit cheaper.
If you fancy something more sophisticated, you could visit Oxford for the day to explore or go shopping at Bicester Village. Failing that a nice walk in the rolling hills is a great and inexpensive way to spend the day.
Let’s face it, the Great British weather is temperamental at best. If you’re planning a road trip to somewhere exposed to the elements, it’s always good to have a plan B in mind just in case the weather takes a turn for the worst.
The benefit of living on an island is you’re never far from a beach. It might sound like a strange choice for an all-weather activity but stick with us. From Blackpool to the Jurassic Coast there are stretches of coastline that have more than just a coastal walk to offer. From seaside shopping towns to arcades and other attractions.
If you’re planning a beach visit it’s always a good idea to have a backup activity in mind, somewhere you can head to if the heavens decide to open there’s somewhere to head to pass the time and still enjoy your day. That could be playing a few games in
You could even split your day, spend the morning on the beach and then lunchtime and the afternoon doing something else.
Castles and Stately Homes
If you want to pretend you’re in a period drama or Game of Thrones, why not head to a castle or stately home? These can be an enjoyable day out. A chance to stretch your legs in picturesque surroundings, potentially learn something and also wonder what life was like in ages past.
The best thing about these sorts of trips is they often combine a healthy mix of indoor and outdoor activities. Whether that’s exploring lavish gardens and then taking a tour of a home or wandering around the dungeons of a massive castle before watching some sort of medieval demonstration.
Who doesn’t love the zoo? Most people have a favourite animal, find the zoo that has yours and go on a road trip.
You can just walk around at your own pace or go to the feedings and talks. Zoos do have indoor areas, like reptile and bat houses, as well as cafés and other covered exhibits to get out of the rain. If you fancy a trip that was more focused on the indoors than the outdoors, but still wanted to watch animals, an aquarium is a great alternative.
A trip to a wildlife park or a zoo is a fun activity for all ages too, so if you’ve got younger and older children, travelling with a group, or just need something to fill a day on a week away somewhere it’s a great addition to your itinerary.
Activities for the kids
Whether it’s a day trip, short break or staycation finding fun activities for the kids during Easter can feel like a chore, especially if the places they want to go have nothing to at least stimulate a grown-up at the same time.
If you need to find a lot of things to do it’s always worth looking up free events in an area, this helps to keep the cost down and fill days with things that won’t break the bank to do while the bigger trips become centrepieces to your holiday planning.
We’ve already covered beaches and coastal activities, even fossil hunting. But, what if you combined all of those? If you’ve got kids that are dinosaur-obsessed having a go at some amateur palaeontology is a great way to spend a few days.
While not strictly just for children, the combination of being able to explore, play on the beach and also look for dinosaurs definitely has an appeal.
There’re also fantastic walks, quaint tea rooms and even outdoor pursuits including rock climbing and cliff diving to get involved in. Although they might not necessarily be the most child friendly activities (unless you’ve got incredibly brave kids).
Whether you like to sit at the front of a rollercoaster screaming or stand around holding coats, theme parks are a great way to get outside and keep the kids entertained. There are parks around the UK with many of them having attractions for smaller children and older kids alike.
If you’re planning to go to a theme park it’s best to get there early, and plan ahead so you know which rides to get to first in order to beat the queues. You could even look at the fast access passes, many places will have discounts and offers available in the run up to the school holidays so it’s worth checking online for good deals before you set off.
Whether you’re shopping in Manchester, sightseeing in York or taking a walk in the countryside there’s loads to do, sometimes right on your doorstep.
These are just a couple of ideas and a handful of the options you could go for over Easter.
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