What’s on in the May half term

It seems like a matter of days since the kids were last on holiday but half term is nearly upon us again. Here’s my to all the best things to do with the kids in Buckinghamshire, Bedfordshire, Oxfordshire and Hertfordshire.

Buckinghamshire Days Out

Stone Village Fete is on the late May bank holiday. It’s on from 12:00 – 16:00. There’s going to be a BBQ, music, donkey rides, zorbing and much more.

Colourscape is back at Waddesdon Manor this half term. It runs from 25th May to 2 Jun from 10:30 – 16:30. It’s a unique mix of light, colour and sound. If you’ve been before it is different this year; there’s a new location and a new structure. They’ve also implemented a new virtual queuing system in place. £5 per adult. £3 per child + normal admission.

There are lots of different workshops going on throughout half term at the Roald Dahl musuem. They’re all related to the work of Roald Dahl but include craft activities, storytelling. Pre-booking required and prices vary.

Hughenden Manor has loads of different activities going on over half term. There will be Beatrice’s Bee Trail as well (£2 per person), help the beekeepers take care of the hives (£5 per person), an orienteering trail tracker (£4 per person). For £20 per person they can also take part in the Big Tree Climb – adults are very welcome as well!

Stowe House and Gardens have got lots going on. There’s a family trail (£2 per child), wild Wednesday (free) and summer strolls (free) which will all help you to tick off some of you 50 things to do before you’re 11 3/4.

Pitstone Windmill has relatively limited opening times but it’s open both Sundays and the Bank Holiday Monday from 10 – 4. Have a look around this historic windmill and hear from the volunteers who restored and protect it. Lots of walks in the area as well. £7.50 for a family ticket or FREE for NT members.

Cliveden house and gardens is running a sports-themed half-term trail from the 25th to 2nd June from 10.30 – 14.30. It costs £2 per child. Normal entry fees apply, free for NT members.

Wendover Woods are running various activities over the half term including Archery, Fencing, Den Building and more. Tickets can be booked online.

Join in with the Lark by the Lakes at Watermead lake on the 26th May from 12.30-5. There will be a dog show, dance displays, games, rides and more. Entry is FREE

The Water Gardens at Clivenden
The Water Gardens at Clivenden

Bedfordshire Days Out

Rushmere Country Park are running their fourth Woollen Woods competition and they need your votes. Knitted animals will be hidden along the sculpture trail and you get to choose your favourite. The trail is free and runs from 25th May to 3rd June.

Learn how to be a Butler in the big house at Wrest Park. It’s aimed towards children and will show them all the tricks of the trade. Included with entry. Family ticket £29.90 or FREE with English Heritage or CSSC membership.

Cross one of the “50 things to do before you’re 11 3/4 off you list at the 50 things club at Dunstable Downs on the 2nd June from 2-3.30. It runs on the first Sunday of the month and involves a different free activity each month. They’ve also opened up their butterfly meadow to celebrate walking month. It costs £1.50 per child.

Blue Peter badge holders get free entry to ZSL Whipsnade Zoo. Their Great Brick Safari is running until the 2nd June and is included with entry. More than a million bricks have been used to build gigantic Lego animals including an elephant and gorilla.

It’s the International Kite Festival and the Bedford Festival of Motoring on the 1st and 2nd of June. There will be rides, family fun, music and stalls as well as the cars and kites. Entry is Free.

The Stockwood Discovery Centre are hosting several different productions over half term. There will be performances of Sourpuss (£7 per ticket), Young Herbert’s Horrors (£7 per ticket) and Be Not Afeard (£5) per ticket. Entry to the centre is FREE.

There’s a whole week of wildlife activities in the Forest of Maston Vale. There are talks about Bumblees, a bug walk, kids crafts and an Owl Pellet Autopsy! Costs vary from free to £4.50.

Oxfordshire days out

Cogges has got lots of things going on over half term. There’s a family festival on the Bank Holiday Monday with lots of activities, performances and storytelling (free with entry). There’s a performance of Ali Baba and the Forty Thieves (£14 adults, £9.50 child) and Oxford Science will be running workshops on the 29th (£2 per child plus admission). If you cannot make those then throughout the holiday there will be a fun farm trail which is £3 per child but you can redeem the cost in the shop once you’ve collected all the clues.

Chedworth Roman Villa has lots of Roman activities taking place over half term. There’s a coin trail, Roman coin mint, Roman crafts and you can meet the real Romans who would have lived at Chedworth.

Didcot Railway Centre have got steam days on the 25th-27th May. There will be the opportunity to ride the trains as well as have a look around them. Blue Peter badge holders get in FREE.

There’s a May half term trail at Grey’s Court for the whole week. The trail costs £2 per child and there’s a prize at the end.

The Blenheim Palace Food Festival takes place from the 25th to 27th May. There will be loads of family friendly activities, 160 stalls and talks/demonstrations from Raymond Blanc OBE, Jean-Christophe Novelli and Celebrity MasterChef Champion, Angellica Bell. The Food Festival is included in free with admission or an annual pass.

Waterperry Gardens are going to be Gnometastic this half-term! Follow the trail and find the gnomes to claim a prize. £2.50 per child.

Take the crafty train at the Chinnor and Princes Risborough Railway. The make and take craft sessions cost £4 per child. If you live in Chinnor or Princes Risborough then train tickets are half price!

Become a Junior Garden Designer at Upton House. Create your own design to earn your Bronze badge. Return in the summer for the chance to earn Silver and Gold badges. Cost £2 per child.

Grey's Court in Oxfordshire
Grey’s Court in Oxfordshire

Hertfordshire days out

Paradise Wildlife Park is holding an Otter weekend on the 25th and 26th May. There will be lots of events taking place outside the Otter enclosure and prizes to be won. Blue Peter badge holders get into the zoo for FREE.

There’s a tree-themed trail at the Ashridge Estate from the 27th to 31st May. Once you’ve finished the trail there’s a craft for you to finish. £3 per person. Entry to the estate is FREE.

St Albans Museum are running a Museum Minis session on the 28th May from 10-11. It’s suitable for kids aged 2-4 and is £3 per child.

Tring Natural History Museum is all about Dinosaurs this half term. Entry to the museum is FREE, as is the exhibit. If it’s a nice day you can also pop over the road and have a wander in Tring Park.

Fancy something magical and unique? Scott’s Grotto is open on both Saturdays and the Bank Holidyay Monday. Entry is free with a suggested donation of £1. It’s a series of underground chambers and tunnels lined with beautiful shells and flint. Only in England!!!

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