With beach days behind us, October Half Term is a great time to explore somewhere new together. The Half Term holidays are a real a highlight for us at Lovat Parks. So whether you have your own holiday home or are coming to us for a holiday, we’re looking forward to seeing you! With falling leaves and mellow Autumn days, it’s the perfect week for some serious family fun.
It’s a great idea to plan your stay so every day brings a brand new adventure. We’ve gathered some great insider tips from our park staff, and these are the October Half Term activities we’d put at the top of our list. There are some great places and events here that you might not have heard about. Have a wonderful week!
If you’re staying in Kent this October...
Catch a puppet show at Minster Gate House Museum
2pm on 27th and 31st October
Don’t miss this delightfully spooky puppet show! ‘The Sheppey Witches and the Evil Doctor’ features two unforgettable characters called Wartnose and Hairychin in a madcap Halloween adventure. It will be staged in the splendid surroundings of the 1000 year old Gate House Museum, and entry is just £1.
Explore the Maze and Underground Grotto at Leeds Castle
Magical is the only word to describe this place! Made up of 2400 Yew trees, the maze is set into a square, but is actually a circular pattern. This makes it extra tricky to solve. But it’s worth it, because your reward in the centre is the entrance to the Underground Grotto. Down here, a whole mystical world carved from minerals and wood, and decorated with shells. Child heaven!
Get lost at Elmley Nature Reserve
A breath-taking 3300 acres of wilderness, Elmley is a special place. This family farm on an island in North Kent has a firm focus on sustainability and rewilding. A day here is a real chance for the whole family to connect with nature. Take a tour to learn about the extensive conservation projects, or go birding – there are so many here. You might even be lucky enough to spy a water vole. Arguably Britain’s cutest rodent.
If you’re planning Half Term in Cornwall...
Spend a day at Newquay Zoo
This small friendly zoo is a winner at any time of the year. With a surprisingly extensive collection of animals, there’s someone for every member of the family to fall in love with. The African Lions, the Capybaras, or everyone’s favourites – the Penguins. It’s part of a nationwide network of Zoos that are involved in animal conservation projects internationally. So each visit helps animals in the wild, too.
Explore Golitha Falls
A pretty walk alongside fairytale waterfalls set in ancient woodland. Golitha Falls is the point where the River Fowey drops 90 metres over a craggy gorge on the edge of Bodmin Moor. Try to time your visit after a period of rain, for the most dramatic falls. And most importantly, leave time for lunch at Inkies Smokehouse – a truly delicious barbecue restaurant that just happens to be situated in the car park!
Learn about sea creatures at Blue Reef Aquarium
If walks on the Cornish beaches and cliffs have inspired your little Marine Biologists, make sure you plan a visit to Blue Reef Aquarium in Newquay. It’s home to 40 naturally-themed habitats. So you’ll learn about the local Cornish sea life, and see colourful fish from far away, too. And it’s not all fish. There are Sea Turtles and Caiman to say hello to as well.
If you’re off to The New Forest
Have a Picnic adventure with a Jaunt ‘Super Monkey’ E-Bike
These are e-bikes with a difference. They look like retro 80s chopper bikes, but have all the leg saving benefits that you’d expect of an E-bike. Book the picnic package and you’ll be provided with a luxury hamper to enjoy at a New Forest beauty spot of your choosing. With 5 power assist modes on your Super Monkey bike, there’s no limit to where you can go to enjoy your lunch.
Learn more with a guided walk in the forest
However lovely a walk in the New Forest with the family may be, there’s a lot here to discover that you just might not notice. That’s where Wild New Forest come in. These guys are nature experts, so they will bring your walk alive with fascinating information about a wealth of subjects. Choose to join a walk focused on birdsong, bats or even fungi. Or they will put together a bespoke walk just for your group, if you’d like.
Enjoy a day at Breamore House
A beautiful Elizabethan Mansion with parkland that stretches into the New Forest, Breamore House has lots to do and see, all in one place. Take a tour of the house to find out what it was really like to live there, before you visit The Country Museum. It’s an exhibition of post-war village life that kids love. There’s a school, a cottage, a blacksmith’s and lots more scenes brought to life in really charming detail.
Having a holiday in Suffolk this Half Term?
Take a River Tour from Mutford Lock
A peaceful way to enjoy the beauty and wildlife of the Broads. Waveney River Tours have been operating in pretty much the same way since 1970, and they know the area better than anyone. You get a real sense of the scale and wildness of the Broads from this cruise, and if you pay close enough attention, you might even spot a Reed Warbler or a Reed Bunting, hidden in the reeds as you pass.
‘Beyond The Barricade’ at the Marina Theatre
7.30pm, Saturday 30th October
A joyous journey through all the top numbers from musical theatre. Sung by the best in the business - ex principle performers from the West End production of Les Miserables. With lots of variety, this show will thrill even the most musical-sceptic members of your family. A theatre visit with the feel-good factor turned up to maximum. Prepare to leave The Marina Theatre grinning from ear to ear.
Treat them to a day at Pleasurewood Hills Park
Generations of children have memories of happy days at Pleasurewood Hills. There are rides here for everyone, from the littlest to the biggest. At one end of the scary spectrum, Wipeout is East Anglia’s biggest rollercoaster and a guaranteed thriller. And for the little ones, Woody’s Cubhouse is a soft play wonderland that you’re likely to have trouble getting them to leave.
In Norfolk for the October half term holiday?
This place is absolutely packed with things to do, climb, discover, explore, ride, walk around and eat...all set in a wonderful wood! Award-winning for a reason, Bewilderwood is a park based on the stories of local author Tom Blofeld. This makes it truly creative, inspiring and magical. Especially if your children have read the books before they come. Halloween activities this October Half Term include storytelling, a trail and crafts with a spooky theme.
Immerse yourselves in history at the Museum of the Broads
This unique museum really brings the history of the Suffolk and Norfolk Broads alive with a charming collection of interesting artefacts, photographs and stories. You’ll learn about the Romans and Medieval peat diggers, right through to the holidaymakers and sailors of today. There’s even a Victorian Steam Boat called Falcon, that runs 30 and 60 minute trips.
Embark on the Deep History Coast Discovery Trail
Covering 36km of coastline all the way from Weyborne to Cart Gap, this interactive walk takes you back hundreds of thousands of years to discover how this important stretch of coast looked then. Download the app to encounter Mammoths and identify fossils by connecting to the eleven discovery points along the way.
Have a magical Half Term Holiday with Lovat Parks
Fancy doing something a bit different this October Half Term? Here at Lovat Parks we love the beautiful little corners of the country that we call home. There’s always plenty going on nearby, so with a little bit of planning, every family holiday can be different.
And if you’re thinking of owning your own holiday home, let us know! We have parks in the prettiest parts of Cornwall, New Forest, Suffolk, Norfolk and Kent. We’d love to show you around and talk to you about your options. It could be the start of a wonderful new adventure for your family.