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If you’re planning a “staycation”, weekend breaks with kids or searching for family day out ideas and things to do with kids, there’s no better place than the beautiful South of England.  

The South East is an ideal holiday destination for families, with a magnitude of family days out and attractions to visit, many with the 'Good to Go' industry award, reassuring visitors that businessese are adhering to Government and public health guidance.  With a multitude of blue flag beaches, hundreds of things to do while the sun is shining, great value holiday parks and free festivals and events; the South East offers parents and children an unforgettable UK holiday without breaking the bank.

This October half term is no different, with over 200+ events and activities taking place across the South, you'll find outdoor activities to enjoy the changing the seasons, indoor crafty activities or attractions to visit on those not so good weather days, and spooky family fun for Halloween.  Click the image below to discover more.

October Half Term and Halloween Event and Things to Do across South East England

What's on for families this weekend?

See our list of family events to see what's happening close to you this week and use the map view to find something nearby. There are many free things to do with attractions also putting on extra activities during school holidays giving you plenty of ideas for your weekends away with the kids.

Best family fun days out & things to do with kids in 2021

Hampshire

  • Explore Portsmouth Historic Dockyard and see the remains of Henry VIII’s favourite ship at the Mary Rose Museum, experience life on board Nelson's famous flagship HMS Victory, sail around some of Portsmouth harbour with a harbour tour and see the mordern day navy in port plus much more.
  • Feed the deer, explore the playground and enjoy the fresh air of the great outdoors at Sky Park Farm, Petersfield.
  • Spark your children’s curiosity in science with a visit to Winchester Science Centre and Planetarium.
  • Follow the clues and solve the puzzles on a Mystery Guide Treasure Hunt adventure.    Eliminate the suspects, and finally unmask the villain with these fun outdoor escape room style books.  Available for Brighton, Portsmouth, Southsea and Winchester.
  • Looking for somewhere to stay?  Set in mature woods and ancient meadowland, this award-winning Solent Hotel & Spa offers a warm, country house welcome yet it is only a stone’s throw from the M27, located midway between Southampton and Portsmouth.
  • Take a stroll around Marwell Zoo and enjoy spotting their animal stars which include – Rothchild’s giraffes, white rhinos, Amur tigers, Humboldt penguins, red pandas, snow leopards and all three species of zebra.
  • In the heart of the New Forest, Beaulieu Home of the Motor Museum is a multi-award winning family day out with something for all ages, including the new James Bond exhibition featuring cars from the brand new movie 'Time to Die'.

East Sussex

  • Set among the domes of a former world famous observatory, The Observatory Science Centre have over 100 interactive exhibits that offer something for all ages.
  • Don’t miss out on the fun at the award-winning Drusillas Park, East Sussex and explore the zoo and meet over 100 different species of animal!
  • 1066 Country: Over 40 attractions set in beautiful coastal and countryside locations, you won’t have to spend too long in the car to experience the best of 1066 Country. Visit a fairy tale castle, watch a  medieval battle, hire a sea or river kayak, run wild in the country park. For family attractions, special offers and free things to do see.
  • Take to the skies to see Brighton and the South Coast as you have never seen them before with British Airways i360!
  • Enjoy a trip on the Kent & East Sussex Railway as it weaves between Tenterden and Bodiam for 10 1/2 miles.

West Sussex

  • The multi-award winning  Fishers Farm Park is the much-loved family day out in the heart of the lovely West Sussex countryside.
  • A fascinating in-sight into life during World War Two. Each artefact or item of memorabilia tells its own unique story set alongside the sounds & music of the times. History appears to come alive in this truly unique nostalgic experience at Wings Aviation Musuem
  • Nestled at the foot of the South Downs just 6 miles north of Chichester, West Dean Gardens is one of the greatest restored English gardens open to the public today.
  • Wakehurst has been managed by the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew since 1965. The collections are in general arranged geographically to create an 80 minute walk through the temperate forests of the world
  • Amberley Museum is dedicated to preserving the industrial heritage of the South East.  With 36 acres to explore and over 40 exhibits to visit, you can discover the South’s working past.
  • With its quintessentially English setting amongst the rolling West Sussex countryside, the historic 12,000 acre Goodwood Estate, home to the Dukes of Richmond for over three hundred years, features an eclectic combination of thrilling unconventional experiences, breath-taking vistas, priceless works of art, organic and award-winning produce.

Kent

  • Just 4 miles south of Maidstone, Leeds Castle is one of the best preserved historic castles in South East England, as well as one of the most iconic.
  • Eagle Heights is a Not for Profit organisation that is home to a vast collection of Birds of Prey as well as Meerkats, Alpaca, Servals, over 20 rescued Huskies!
  • Fancy an adrenalin fix? The visit Action Watersports  they have an amazing Inflatable Aqua Park along with, Water-skiing, Wakeboarding, Jet Skiing, Flyboarding, Stand Up Paddle Boarding and Fun Rides. Everyone is welcome with all equipment supplied
  • Set in 100 acres of beautiful countryside, the Rare Breeds Centre offers fun and adventure for all the family.

Surrey

  • Escape to the woodland playground and floral gardens at Watts Gallery Artists' Village.
  • Visit Guildford and stay in the Guildford Harbour Hotel, Mandolay Hotel or Angel Posting House in the town centre, or enjoy tranquillity of  hotels in the surrounding Countryside.  Experience numerous quality dining options and don’t forget to taste some Silent Pool Gin or local Albury or Denbies wine. 
  • Experience the ultimate bouncing fun for kids and big kids with over 50 interconnected trampolines that span right across the floor and up the walls at AirHop Guildford.

Berkshire

Buckinghamshire

  • Whatever the Season and whatever the Weather, you’ll always find stacks of Animal fun, Indoor Play & Outdoor Adventure at Odds Farm Park.
  • Discover a wonderful little world at the world's oldest orginal model village, Bekonscot Model Village & Railway
  • Bletchley Park is a place of exceptional historical importance. It remains highly relevant to our lives today and for the future. 
  • Chiltern Open Air Museum is a 45 acre site within the beautiful Chilterns countryside, with a working historic farm with Old English goats, chickens, cows and Oxford Down sheep.
  • Green Dragon Eco Farm is a 44 acre environmentally friendly rare breeds farm attraction in Aylesbury Vale, choose to visit the farm with a day pass or annual membership for fun all year round!

Oxfordshire

  • Head to Henley and join the fun at The River & Rowing Museum.
  • The Cherwell Boathouse is an iconic  restaurant and punt station close to the centre Oxford. Established in 1904 and  it has been  a family run for over 50 years as a working Boathouse and restaurant with over 80 handmade punts in the water.
  • Enjoy a visit to Farmers Gow's.  Animals are central to this unique ‘hands on’ learning through activity farm.  Four large barns contain all weather activities and picnic areas.
  • Explore this World Heritage Site of Blenheim Palace, amongst over 2000 acres of ‘Capability’ Brown landscaped parkland, including the family friendly Pleasure Gardens, reached by miniature train, with a giant hedge maze, butterfly house and adventure playground.

Isle of Wight

  • Inspiring, Surprising and Award-Winning … Equally appealing to adults and families, the Isle of Wight Steam Railway will charm, engage and captivate
  • Explore the island's biggest all-weather, fun-filled family destinations at Tapnell Farm.
  • Let your imagination run wild as you start your very own adventure…at Black Gang Chine
  • With some incredible day and night time experiences to be found throughout the season, the 88 acres of beautiful countryside at Robin Hill Country Park, provides fun, adventure and great family experiences.
  • Enjoy the unique experience of travelling by hovercraft from Portsmouth to the Isle of Wight with Hovertravel, as you travel on a cushion of air just 1.5 metres above the waves

Dorset

  • Enjoy holidaying in Dorset with a stay at Hoburne Park with its indoor and outdoor pools, tennis court, crazy golf course and multi-use games area
  • Explore Poole, home to Europe’s largest natural harbour, with must visit highlights including a historic quayside, a quaint old town, glorious parks and gardens and beautiful beaches including the world famous, Sandbanks beach.  
  • Stay in Bournemouth to breath in the fresh sea vibes and discover a bustling town where you’re sure to create epic family memories you’ll treasure forever.
  • Christchurch steeped in history and heritage and brimming with soul. Explore historic sites with story-telling aplenty through its cobbled streets. Every nook of this beautiful and quaint town will surprise you.

TWITTER UPDATES

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RT @WinCathedral: The Cathedral is delighted to confirm that the Christmas Market will go ahead this year, opening on the 19th of Nov… https://t.co/sTQIFDmGlI
19 Oct 2021   14:47:54
Bounce to your heart’s content at @AirHopGuildford, with over 30,000 sq ft of bouncing fun. Enjoy 49 interconnecte… https://t.co/kqt30zJYXw
19 Oct 2021   12:30:03
Discover an adventure across the seas and through the universe at @RMGreenwich. An epic day out for all the family… https://t.co/PvgRNlCkcF
19 Oct 2021   11:39:02
Discover #Gosport with its 24 miles of waterfront, impressive naval heritage, scenic countryside walks, safe panora… https://t.co/enieYIp1NK
19 Oct 2021   10:12:31