family day out

The UK attracts millions of tourists from all over the world. And, it’s not hard to see why. For such a small country, the UK has an almost inexhaustible number of great places to go. But, sometimes you have to feel sorry for these tourists, especially the kids. They race around the country, trying to take in as much as they can. It must be tiring. As an alternative, here’s a list of the top 5 things to do with kids in the UK. They’re things British people do when they get time off, and they could be a lot more relaxing.

You must have at least one day at the seaside. After all, the British invented the seaside. Of course the UK doesn’t have tropical weather, but that doesn’t matter. You and the kids will all enjoy the beaches, the arcades, the rides, and the fish and chips. It’s not the subtlest aspect of British culture, but it’s one of the most fun.

Sunday lunch at a country pub is another British institution. It’s so popular; you’ll have to book in advance at a lot of places. Many pubs in the UK are child-friendly, the ones in the country usually are. They generally have big gardens with play areas, and you can eat outside when the weather’s good. There’s no better way to enjoy your roast beef.

Most UK tourists visit a castle of some sort, normally one of the major ones, like Warwick or Windsor. But, there are hundreds of other castles all over Britain. They don’t all have visitor centres or guided tours. At a typical local castle, it’s more about exploring it for yourself and using your imagination, which is ideal for kids.

The British will take to the water like ducks on a sunny day, and in boats of every size and description. There are rivers, canals and lakes all over the country, and boats can be hired by the hour or longer. The Norfolk Broads and the Lake District are especially good if you want to base a whole holiday around boating. Needless to say, kids will love it.

Britons are big fans of the great outdoors. To discover the wilder side of Britain, venture out into one of the country’s National Parks. There are fifteen of these around the country, and all of them are outstandingly beautiful and rich in wildlife. National Parks tend to be in the more upland areas, so you’ll need to dress for the conditions. But it’s never a total wilderness, there’s always somewhere you can go for a cup of tea.

There is one more traditional British leisure activity we might mention. It doesn’t qualify as one of the top 5 things to do with kids in the UK. In fact, it’s not one of the top 100 things for anyone to do. It’s having a picnic in a layby at the side of the road. Normally this is done with a folding table and chairs, a vacuum flask, cheese sandwiches and plenty of rugs to keep warm. Nobody really knows why people do this. Keep an eye out for it, but don’t be tempted to try it yourself.

Written by Mike who writes for www.thebritishtravelguide.co.uk and www.londondaytrip.co.uk you can follow him on twitter @payt