If the zoo is old hat, why not visit The Cairngorm Reindeer Centre in Aviemore? For even cuter, try The Swannery in Abbotsbury, Dorset, to see the cygnets among about 1,000 swans. Or Tenby Dinosaur Park for something less snugly – all kids love dinosaurs with big teeth. Or something smaller but still scaly (the animals not the kids) at The New Forest Reptile Centre near Lyndhurst where all our native species are kept.
Something to wear them out needed? The New Forest is still a good bet, with miles of woodland tracks to roam. Get them on the water at somewhere like Hereford’s Paddles and Pedals Canoe Hire. Or take them into Maze in Maize at Whapload in Lincolnshire.
Dads need to be kept happy too, so how about Diggerland in Langley Park, Durham – loads of activities, and the chance to look at (and maybe even drive) big diggers.
Ironbridge in Shropshire has a series of museums, maybe the most child-friendly being Blists Hill Victorian town, with a proper old fashioned sweet shop, real money (none of this decimal nonsense), and sometimes a proper fairground – and the chance to sneak some history into the little treasures without them knowing it. Still in Ironbridge there is Enginuity, where you can do the same with technology and engineering, amid tons of hands-on things to do. A bit of imagination in finding the right place, and the right place will have the imagination to entertain the whole family – with maybe a bit of education into the bargain.