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10 Easter family fun days with gardens in mind

Join in Easter egg hunts, wildlife trails and woodland olympics in some beautiful garden settings.

Check out these fabulous family days out that will keep the kids entertained (English Heritage/PA)

The Easter holidays are almost upon us, as kids let off steam, eat too much chocolate and generally need the great outdoors for fresh air and exercise.

There’s no shortage of family days out on offer. The National Trust alone is offering more than 195 Easter trails across the country over the Bank Holiday weekend and the school holidays, where parents and children can explore mazes and meadows, parkland, kitchen gardens and woodlands all showing signs of spring.

Other public gardens will be staging Easter egg hunts, nature trails and arts and craft events – so there’s no excuse not to get outdoors.

Here are just a few of the family-friendly activities to enjoy over Easter.

1. The Big Brick Build (Selected English Heritage venues and dates between Mar 29 and Apr 14)

The Big Lego Brick Build at Stonehenge (English Heritage/PA)

This year, English Heritage’s Big Brick Build events will run across seven locations nationwide, in which children aged four and over can build their own piece of history from Lego bricks, which will form part of an iconic artwork. From a mini Elizabethan Garden at Kenilworth Castle, Warwickshire, or the stables at Audley End, Essex, to a life-size version of Queen Victoria at Osborne, Isle of Wight, kids can get busy building, while master builders will pull all the pieces together to form an impressive final piece.

Last year, participants made a giant model of Stonehenge out of 400,000 Lego bricks. This Easter’s aim is to help make a Lego brick mosaic of Stonehenge.

2. Treemendous Woodland Olympics and Easter Trail (Newby Hall & Gardens, Ripon, North Yorkshire, Mar 31 and Apr 1)

Fairytale folk will entertain the children over Easter with a theatrical family adventure bringing the woodland Olympics to life. While some cheeky creatures may try to provide some distraction, all young Olympians will have the chance to be a woodland medal winner by finding the fairies in the woods on this enjoyable trail. There’s also an Easter show for two-to-eight-year-olds on both days, with Story Craft Theatre.

3. The Great Shark Eggcase Hunt (Aberdaron, Pwllheli, Wales, Mar 29)

Explore the beach at Aberdaron with North Wales Wildlife Trust and learn about the incredible local shark species, before venturing out onto the shore and searching for real shark and skate eggcases. You’ll learn how to collect, identify, and report the different eggcases and contribute towards conserving and protecting incredible Welsh sharks.

4. Titanic walking tour, art and hidden histories (Tudor House and Garden, Southampton, Apr 4)

Packed with 800 years of history, there’s plenty of hidden historic tales to explore at Southampton’s Tudor House & Garden this Easter – with some spring themed print-pressing art thrown in.

The Titanic Walking Tour on 4th April, takes a step back in time to 1912, walking the sites and places of the Titanic story – Southampton was home to many members of the crew who worked aboard the doomed vessel. On the same day, there’s an art-inspired workshop that explores the art of the press-print at the Trio of Spring Prints workshop in the house’s walled garden.

5. Lindt Gold Bunny Hunt (Hampton Court Palace, East Molesey, Surrey, Mar 23-Apr 14)

(Historic Royal Palaces/PA)

The popular Easter hunt will return to Henry VIII’s famous palace, with families invited to explore the gardens on the hunt for hidden Lindt gold bunny statues, peeking out from the spring blooms. Each statue offers a chance to match the names of influential characters from Hampton Court Palace’s history to the distinctive red ribbons, with a little Lindt gold bunny chocolate treat awaiting those who find each of the statues hidden along the trail. Visitors during the Easter holidays will also have the chance to explore the maze and encounter a selection of these characters roaming the palace throughout the day.

6. Easter trail (Montrose Basin Visitor Centre and Wildlife Reserve, Rossie Braes, Montrose, Scotland, Apr 1-19)

Scottish Wildlife Trust are running a self-led Easter nature trail from the Montrose Basin Visitor Centre for families – follow the clues inside and outside of the visitor centre and crack the code to win a prize. The centre offers panoramic views across the incredible estuary reserve, with telescopes and binoculars available for you to see the wildlife up close.

7. Springfest (Eden Project, Cornwall, Mar 29-Apr 14)

(Eden Project/PA)

If you’re down in Cornwall over Easter, you’ll need at least a day to explore this amazing global garden, where during the Springfest there will be a focus on family-friendly games, each exploring our relationship with food. Visitors can compete in a round of milk bottle skittles, try their hand at hoopla and follow the journey of food, from field to fork, with buzz wires. There’s a play zone for under-fives, where children can join in a spin-a-dinner game.

8. Giant Egg Hunts (All main RHS Gardens – RHS Bridgewater, Salford; RHS Harlow Carr, North Yorkshire; RHS Hyde Hall, Essex; RHS Rosemoor, North Devon; and RHS Wisley, Surrey, selected dates from Mar 23-Apr 14)

The gardens will be bursting with spring bulbs and blossom at Easter, so be inspired by the flora and fauna while the children get some fresh air on the hunt for giant eggs. Children who successfully find all of the hidden eggs will be rewarded with a free chocolatey treat. Additional activities include storytelling sessions, arts and crafts workshops and family-friendly planting. Dates, times and activities vary per garden, so check the RHS website for details.

9. Nests and Eggs (The Cut Visitor Centre, 193 Abbey Foregate , Shrewsbury, Shropshire, Mar 28)

Explore the fascinating world of birds’ eggs and nests with Shropshire Wildlife Trust this Easter. A huge collection of replica eggs lets you compare sizes, colours and shapes – see the biggest and smallest eggs in the world. There will be real nests, nestbox help and advice, fun facts about eggs and nests and a nest building challenge.

10. Easter adventure trail (Wimpole Estate, Cambridgeshire. Mar 23-Apr 14)

With 2,500 acres of gently rolling countryside west of Cambridge the gardens and parkland surrounding Wimpole Hall offer plenty of room for family adventure, plus there’s a rare breed farm where children can admire the animals. Hunt for Easter challenges on a new route for 2024, with nature-themed activities including hop like a bunny, build a home for nature and wibble wobble like a lamb. There’s also a new playground for younger visitors.


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