12 ideas for family fun in the great outdoors
With so much on offer, there’s no time for children or their parents to get bored. To give you a few ideas on where to start, here’s a selection of beautiful places and entertaining family attractions to ensure you all have a wonderful time – where will your family choose?
Windsor Great Park
One of the most beautiful parks in this part of England, Windsor Great Park offers 4,800 acres of rolling countryside, forest trails, lakes, gardens and children’s playgrounds. With its colourful flower displays, The Savill Garden is a highlight for families, as is the Obelisk Lawn play area, which is packed with activities for pre-school-age children.
The Look Out Discovery Centre
Offering ‘edutainment’ at its best, The Look Out Discovery Centre is filled with exciting science and nature-themed games and activities to inspire a child’s imagination. The space hosts over 90 activities ranging from puzzles to interactive exhibits. Outside, there are also three excellent playgrounds and a series of forest walking and cycling trails. If travelling with toddlers, keep an eye out for the centre’s special toddler days.
While Paris is beautiful from above, it’s also attractive from the water. Families can enjoy an hour of relaxation and sightseeing during a cruise on the River Seine. A number of companies such as Bateaux Parisiens, leaving from the port next to the Eiffel Tower, offer tours that sail past iconic sites such as Notre Dame, the Louvre and Grand Palais.
Parc Zoologique de Paris
Located in the largest public park in the city, Bois de Vincennes, the zoo should be at the top of the itinerary for animal lovers. Visit to see over 2,000 animals from all over the globe, from giraffes and lions to jaguars, monkeys, penguins, and many more. Another great thing to look out for are the feeding sessions which visitors are welcome to watch.
Home to famous sights such as the Hollywood Sign and the Bronson Caves, Griffith Park is an unmissable urban wilderness in the heart of LA. A popular place for a family walk and picnic, there’s over 4,000 acres of landscaped parkland to explore, with some of the most impressive views of Los Angeles you’re likely to find anywhere in the city.
Venice Beach Boardwalk
An iconic boardwalk stretching 2.4km/1.5 miles along the Californian coast, this is the spot for watching street performers, picking up unique souvenirs or simply enjoying a stroll with the family. Spend a sun-soaked afternoon swimming and playing on Venice Beach, before exploring the café-lined boulevard.
ZSL London Zoo
ZSL London Zoo is the oldest scientific zoo in the world. It’s home to hundreds of species, from gorillas and lions to birds, reptiles and insects. It’s easy to spend hours exploring ZSL and its many exhibits, a highlight of which is the living rainforest area – the first of its kind in London. Zookeepers host daily activities such as penguin shows, talks at animal enclosures and feeding sessions, which young explorers can enjoy.
As well as being one of London’s most beautiful parks, Hyde Park is a popular destination for families after a fun day out. The 350-acre Royal Park offers lots of opportunities for children to play and expend some energy. Activities to look out for including boating on the Serpentine and a picturesque horse ride.
Parco Sempione is arguably the most popular park in the city and is often compared to New York’s Central Park. The enormous 95-acre space is packed full of attractions including the medieval Sforza Castle, the beautiful Arch of Peace and the Civic Aquarium of Milan. With so much to discover, you’d be forgiven for spending an entire afternoon here.
Indro Montanelli Public Gardens
This large and beautiful 18th century park was the city’s first public garden, and is the perfect spot for the whole family to enjoy. Majestic trees, fountains and ponds dot the vast lawns, making for a tranquil space for picnicking and relaxing while the kids have a run around. The park also features three different playgrounds and the Butterfly Oasis, a tropical garden home to 50 species of the elegant insects.
The Gardens at the American Academy
Atop Janiculum Hill you’ll find 11 acres of organically-cultivated gardens. The two main gardens are those surrounding the Mercedes and Sid R. Bass Garden and Villa Aurelia. Bass is a typically Roman space surrounded by 17th century defence walls and filled with fruit trees and flowers. Villa Aurelia is best known for its grand fountains and impressive city views.
Bioparco di Roma
Located on the beautiful 17th century Villa Borghese estate, Bioparco di Roma is a highlight for animal lovers. The 42-acre zoological park is home to over 1,000 animals and 200 species of mammals, birds, amphibians and reptiles. Some of the most exciting residents include monkeys, crocodiles, giraffes, owls, snakes and Asian elephants.
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