All alone in the deep, dark wood, well not quite…

For the last couple of weeks all four of us having been itching to go for a walk. Me and my husband have been too busy to do anything substantial outdoors with the kids so we set aside today to go for a big walk and to squeeze in a quick bike ride in the park on the way home. We chose to go to Brockholes, a family favourite as it was close by (meaning we could spend longer there and not be stuck in traffic).  The weather was supposed to be cloudy but dry so we took our chances and packed a picnic for lunch. We chose to eat on the hill overlooking the floating visitor centre, a stunning view and it’s made more comfortable by the availability of picnic tables. Today one of the picnic tables had been placed inside the little11228038_10152741186490213_2127840372251869360_n coppice used for making dens so we decided to eat there. The kids have been really excited about getting out and were very pleased to be greeted by a caterpillar whilst having lunch. I had heard about some “Gruffalo” inspired wooden statues hidden somewhere on the reserve and wanted to find them so we headed down by the river, an area we don’t often visit. The kids loved it when they saw a sign for the Deep Dark Wood and Tom ran straight ahead through the archway. It opened up into a wild area, which looed like it was used by Brockholes when they do the holiday clubs. Charlotte was the first to spot a statue, Snake. Of course, she wanted a photo with every statue we found and quickly we had found them all, reciting the story as we went. What I wasn’t expecting, was to find another area with more statues, this time Wind in the Willows themed. It was a great walk and judging by the squeals coming from the 11233179_10152741187145213_1416094820817292930_nkids, they really enjoyed it. After we had searched high and low and found every statue we headed to the river bank and much to the kids delight, it was covered in Dandelion Clocks!

About an hour of blowing seeds and a quick snack later we had finished our walk and headed to our local park with the bikes. The sun came out and the little ones cycled up and down the paths and round the fountain.

A much needed, low stress, cheap day out was had outdoors and everyone had a great time. It just goes to prove that you don’t have to go far or spend a fortune to have a fantastic, wild, nature filled day out. Your local park and/or nature reserve or woods is all you need to enjoy some quality, family time in the great outdoors.

Fun had (according to the kids): 20/10

Tantrum Level: 0/10 The low stress and excitement got the little ones through the day without any major incidents.

Worth it: Always.

Worth knowing: Not a lot, keep an eye on the weather and dress appropriately, maybe read the books to your kids before going to get them excited for the statue trail. Brockholes also has a large play area and facilities such as a restaurant and toilets.

50 things achievements: 2.Roll down a really big hill, 4. Build a den, 25. Make a grass trumpet and loads more!

Cost: Free entry, you just pay for parking…

Summer (1 April to 30 Sept)

Up to 20 minutes – No charge
All day maximum charge – £6

Winter (1 Oct to 31 March)

Up to 20 minutes – No charge
All day maximum charge – £5

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