With just a couple of weeks until the kids break up for February Half Term, it is time to start thinking about things to keep them occupied during the week long break.
I have put together my top picks of fun things to do with the kids this half term.
Days Out in Dorset for Sunny Days in February
Meet the Fairy Penguins at Weymouth Sealife Centre
Weymouth SEA LIFE centre became home to twenty fairy penguins in May 2018, who relocated from Manly SEA LIFE Sanctuary in Australia to due to the closure of the Manly Sanctuary in February.
Fairy penguins (also known as little blue penguins) are the world’s smallest penguin measuring just over 25cm tall and weighing around 1 kg. They also have a very unusual song!
Weymouth SEA LIFE is the home to more than 1,000 creatures with 13 different zones containing penguins, sharks, turtles and stingrays, plus a large adventure play park, perfect to let the kids run off some steam. This half term, guests will also be tasked with helping Professor Finn locate the large Play-Doh model shark teeth in the tanks as part of their Jawsome Sharks event. At the end of the trail Professor Finn will greet the new Jawsome Rangers and share some of his expert knowledge of the fascinating sharks.
For more information and prices, head to visitsealife.com/weymouth/
Lulworth Fossil Hunt
Taking part on Tuesday 19th February and on various dates throughout the year, this hour session begins with a short talk on the fossils of Lulworth before taking a short walk down to the beach to begin a fossil hunt. Booking is essential – head to www.lulworth.com/events/whats-on/fossil-hunt/ for more information.
Price: Under 16’s £2.50 | Adults £5
Lulworth Strandline Scavenge
Taking part on Wednesday 20th February 2019, at the eastern side of Lulworth Cove. This is an expert led walk along the strandline at Lulworth to hunt out any interesting flotsam and jetsam, some of which could have travelled thousands of miles, each with a different story to tell. The walk will be of around two miles and will be on loose shingle, so not suitable for buggies and wheelchairs.
Price: Under 16’s £2.50 | Adults £5 | Under 5’s Free
Charmouth Fossil Hunting Walk
Running everyday over half term, these two hour fossil hunting walks starts up Charmouth Visitor Centre with a 25 minute talk from the Centre Warden about the rocks and fossils of Charmouth and how to find fossils on the beach. The group then heads out onto the beach with the wardens and spends the rest of the session looking for fossils. Head to charmouth.org/chcc/event-category/fossil-events/ for more information.
Price: Under 16’s £4.00 | Adults £8.00 | Under 2’s Free
Medieval Siege at Corfe Castle
Experience medieval family fun with Corfe Castle’s quest, crafts and workshops and watch missiles launch from the castle’s medieval siege engine.
Budding knights and damsels can bring your own brave teddy for the Great Escape and zipwire from the top of the castle to the bottom!
This event is free, however normal admission prices apply (£28 for a family ticket). National Trust members are free!
See the Snowdrops at Kingston Lacy
Kingston Lacy is one of the best places to see a carpet of Snowdrops and they come into flower throughout January and February.
Kingston Lacy is one of our favourite places to get some fresh air with the kids, with pretty gardens to explore, wide paths to run around and trees to climb.
Take the Zog Trail at Moors Valley
The Zog Trail at Moors Valley is a 1.5 km long walk which starts at the Visitor Centre, taking families on a well marked out, buggy friendly journey through the woods with plenty of activities to keep the kids entertained along the way.
The trail is free to do, but I highly recommend you pick up the activity pack at the visitors centre, for just £3 which contains added fun, plus a cute Zog mask for the kids to wear.
For adventure loving kids, try riding the Ski Bobs or spinning down the slopes in a Ringo at Snowtrax, near Christchurch.
For those a little more wary, there is also the Alpine Adventure park, complete with a huge Pirate Ship climbing frame, numerous trampolines, the alpine fort and plenty of slippy slides.
Farmer Palmers Farm Park
Farmer Palmers is the perfect destination for under 10’s, with both indoor/outdoor play areas, farm animals to see, cuddle and feed, woodland trails, a bumpy tractor ride and the chance to feed their very own herd of red deer.
Monkey World – Wareham
Monkey World is a 65 acre ape and monkey sanctuary and rescue centre near Wool and is most famous for the TV series, Monkey Life, shown on channel 5 which follows the rescue and rehabilitation of abused and neglected primates.
There is plenty of time to learn all about the amazing work that Monkey World does by attending the keeper talks that run throughout the day, however, it is the huge adventure playground that my kids love visiting and I can never tear them away!!
Honeybrook Farm – Wimborne
Honeybrook Farm has plenty of activities to occupy all ages, with a large adventure playground, bouncy airbag, indoor play area, woodland walk, miniature village, miniature train and a tractor trailer ride.
Dorset Heavy Horse Centre
Dorset Heavy Horse Farm Rescue Centre is not just about heavy horses: they also have pygmy goats, kune-kune pigs, Inuit snow dogs and more besides.
Daily attractions include regular educational shows, free wagon rides, tractor and trailer rides, miniature pony and cart rides, go karts, swing boats and you even get the chance to drive a vintage tractor.
Adventure Wonderland is an award winning theme park for the under 8’s near Bournemouth. During the winter months you can enjoy the weather-beating giant indoor Aztec soft play centre, Wild Thing. Also open for half term is the maze and play area, Caterpillar ride, Charlie Cool’s Cars, the Jabberwocky double-helix slide and Cuddles Corner.
Also there will be Titch the T-Rex and his dinosaur friends will be taking up ‘roar’sidence at Adventure Wonderland, from Tuesday 19th to Thursday 21st February.
Sherborne Old Castle is a romantic 12th-century ruin set in beautiful grounds next to New Sherborne Castle.
A residence of the Bishop of Salisbury for half its history, this castle has been home to kings, earls, sheriffs and courtiers and is reputed to be where the Exchequer system was invented and is perfect for exploring!
Days Out in Dorset For Rainy Days in February
Being February Half Term, chances are we will also experience some rainy days, but there is still plenty to entertain the kids indoors.
Situated slap bang in Bournemouth town centre, BH2 is an entertainment complex with lots to do for all the family, including Odeon Cinema’s, Centre VR – VR Experience and Mr Mulligans indoor adventure golf.
Tower Park Entertainment Complex – Poole
At Tower Park there are numerous attractions available to occupy all age groups, including Splashdown Water Park, Lemur Landings Soft Play, Hollywood Bowl and Cineworld as well as Bingo for the adults and a range of restaurants to suit every taste and budget.
At Lemur Landings, there is not one, but two fantastic evenings of phaser tag! Climb aboard their giant space station themed playframe for 6 exciting phaser missions & Digiwall fun!
Rockreef Climbing Centre
Rockreef is a climbing activity centre situated on Bournemouth Pier which offers 28 unique Clip ‘n’ Climb walls, the ‘Stairway to Heaven’ climbing challenge, a HighLine aerial obstacle course and endless amounts of fun for participants, whilst pushing and testing their agility, confidence, climbing and problem-solving skills.
Situated next to Bournemouth Pier, the Oceanarium takes you on an underwater adventure as you journey through the amazon, Great Barrier Reef and the Gange, to see over 150 species of fish.
They also have a family of otters, penguin beach encounter, spot the terrifying crocodiles on crocodile rock, look out for friendly sea turtles or, if you’re feeling brave, why not enter the visual interactive dive cage to see the sharks in a different way?
The Tank Museum
The Tank Museum is home to the world’s biggest collection of tanks and is a great day out for all the family.
As well as being able to explore the museum and climb aboard some of their famous tanks, kids can also let off steam in the indoor and outdoor play areas, take part in craft activities and find out more about life in the trenches with their interactive displays.
Cool Coast Ice Rink
The Cool Coast Ice Rink at Bournemouth International Centre is open until 23rd February with a large rink for the more experienced skater and a mini rink for those first nerve-racking glide, with skate mates available to hire for the youngsters.
Is there anywhere else you would add to my list?