It can be a blow if it rains at weekends or the school holidays, but if there's one thing we can rely on it's our unpredictable weather! And, when it’s time to take a break from home entertainment this half term, it’s good to know there are still a variety of indoor attractions to keep everyone entertained. Here are just a few great ways to while away a grey day…
Enjoy a tropical day out at The Living Rainforest
The Living Rainforest is a super day out for all the family. Its re-creation of an Amazon rainforest is bursting with plants and animals such as monkeys, birds and a crocodile. The lucky ones may even see their free ranging sloth! This half term they will be running events related to national nest box week. The bird theme runs through all their talks, craft workshops, treasure trails & free guided walks through the rainforest.
With an average year round temperature of over 24◦C, you are guaranteed a bit of summer every day! For more details, call The Living Rainforest on 01635 202444 or visit www.livingrainforest.org
Free Family Craft Days at Maidenhead Heritage Centre
Head to Maidenhead Heritage Centre to take part in their popular series of free family craft days. On Wednesday 18th February you’ll be going back to the Middle Ages and creating your very own medieval treasures, from glittering goblets and jewellery to royal crowns and proclamations! You can also explore the special centenary exhibition “Maidenhead in the First World War”, running until 28th March (free admission). The adventurers amongst you can also take to the skies in their state of the art spitfire simulator (charges apply). To find out more, call them on 01628 780 555 or visit www.maidenheadheritage.org.uk.
Windsor & Royal Borough Museum create lots of indoor fun
Join the half-term activities at Windsor & Royal Borough Museum this wet and windy February. Your children will learn about the Barons who made King John sign the Magna Carta and then they can make their own themed hanging mobile! They can also discover all about the Zeppelin raids on Britain and then create their very own air ship. Check out the listings in the Primary Times Diary for more information or contact Windsor & Royal Borough Museum on 01628 685686.
It’s Family Activity Day at Shaw House
Mark Wednesday 18th February on your calendar! It’s the day to visit Shaw House when your children can use their creative skills to make an English Civil War soldier model and work out the hidden message that is part of the Civil War-inspired trail. Activities are aimed at ages 4 - 11 years old and under 15’s must be accompanied by an adult. There is no need to book, just drop in. An additional charge of £1 per child applies to this activity (in addition to the normal admission, Adults £3, children £1.50). For further details phone 01635 279279 or visit www.westberks.gov.uk/shawhouse
It’s back to the Stone Age for West Berkshire Museum
Discover the earliest period of human culture as West Berkshire Museum ventures back to the Stone Age offering family activities on Thursday 19th and Friday 20th February. On Thursday, there will be Stone Age-themed family events and trails, where children can make a woolly mammoth to take home and discover some fascinating facts about these huge hairy beasts! On Friday, learn all about Stone Age cave art and have a go on the papered walls of the museum’s Cloth Hall, plus create and take your own cave painting home. There is no need to book, just drop in. Entry to the museum is free and the activity is £2 per child. For more information, please telephone: 01635 519562 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Craft Activities inspired by Nature at Reading Museum
Join the team at Reading Museum this half term for some brilliant activities inspired by the animals in their exhibition ‘Allen Seaby: Art and Nature’. Their one hour activities for the over 5’s include ‘Printing: All Creatures Great and Small’ and making ‘Pony Rosettes’. You can also make cheery ‘Make & Take: Rocking Horses’ in their half hour sessions for all ages on Wednesday.
Families can have great fun stepping back in time for some strict Victorian Schoolroom sessions on Tuesday and older children will love creating ‘Arty Stationery’ in their booked, two hour sessions on Thursday. See www.readingmuseum.org.uk for details.
Escape the cold this half term with a trip to Coral Reef
What could be better on a cold February day than heading off to a pool with a balmy 300 C temperature? Not only that, Coral Reef offers Snake River flumes, thrilling water rapids, toddler pools, giant water slides for all ages and a Pirate Ship with newly added water cannons! And for those wanting a more restful time, try out their relaxing poolside spa pools or take time out at the Coconut Grove Restaurant or poolside Beach Café. During school holidays, the pool opens from 9.30am weekdays and 9am at weekends (February holiday dates are 13-23 February inclusive). Check out the website www.bracknell-forest.gov.uk/coralreef for more details.
Have a hoot at the Look Out this half term!
The Look Out Discovery Centre is a brilliant place to visit with all the family, in all weather conditions, so don’t let winter put you off! The main attraction is inside (or outside under cover) with over 90 amazing hands-on science and fun activities. Outside is Swinley Forest with 1,000 hectares of woodland where you can explore the adventure play area, orienteering course, walks and trails. Check out the website for details of the superb Toys in Trouble show featuring their owls, Eric and Erica, which is on at weekends and Bracknell Forest school holidays. For details see www.bracknell-forest.gov.uk/thelookoutdiscoverycentre