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  • Writer's pictureMarietta

Summer Family Fun For FREE!

Happy children

With the summer holidays in full swing, here in Kent, we know that lots of families will be looking for great days out to keep the children (and the rest of the family), entertained. As a mother of three myself, I also understand only too well, that the school holidays can be very expensive and so I am always on the lookout for low cost or free places to visit.

Fortunately, Kent has a lot to offer and so I thought I would share my top five free places to visit, whether you live locally or are coming to stay at Witherdens Hall Organic Spa Retreat. Click on the headings for links to each website.

Situated on the sea front at Walmer, just a couple of minutes from Deal, Walmer Paddling Pool offers a beautiful, shallow pool and stunning seaside views, as well as all of the amenities you need for a young family: toilets, changing facilities, ice creams and hot food and drinks. There is a lawned area where you can put your picnic blanket and shoes, whilst you go for a paddle.

We have spent many happy hours playing here. And when you have finished paddling you can always take a nice stroll along the seafront.

Walmer Paddling Pool
Walmer Paddling Pool: Photo Credit TripAdvisor

Further along the coast, you will find the seaside town of Folkestone, with its Creative Quarter, water play fountains and newly refurbished Harbour Arm, complete with lighthouse champagne bar! (Unfortunately the champagne is not free!)

Heading along the seafront towards Hythe, you will also find the Coastal Park - a huge adventure playground for children of all ages. Again, there are good facilities for families and plenty of good picnic spots. It is a really unique place and the gardens around the park are beautiful.

Part of the Lower Lees Coastal Park in Folkestone
Part of the Lower Lees Coastal Park in Folkestone

Set in the countryside, between Sandwich and Deal, Betteshanger Park is a fantastic place to go for events and days out. They have a brilliant play park as well as bike tracks, walks, geocaching and orienteering. This place is always evolving and offering new and exciting activities for families. For the full time table, visit their website.

Bike hire is available at Betteshanger Park

A little further afield, but still in Kent, Bedgebury National Pinetum is a great woodland day out for families and they also offer additional activities for children, for a small fee.

Take a picnic, stay all day and see if you can spot the Gruffalo and the Gruffalo’s child hidden in the woods! You can even download activity sheets, before you go, to keep the children busy on your day out.

Can you find the Gruffalo at Bedgebury?

Set in the heart of the historic city of Canterbury, the Beaney House of Art and Knowledge is a great place to spend a few hours with the children. It always has interesting activities to get involved in and artefacts to look at, as well as some really fascinating exhibitions and a library.

It has great facilities for families, including a café, toilets, pushchair/ wheel chair access to the side of the building and lifts throughout. It is also indoors, so great for a rainy afternoon. You can use the Park and Ride bus service into Canterbury, which my children absolutely love!

The Beaney House of Art and Knowledge
The Beaney House of Art and Knowledge

So there you are, five days of family fun in Kent, which are completely free of charge. Please note: You may require money for parking at some of these places. There’s nothing worse than arriving somewhere with a car full of children and not having any change for parking!

I hope that you have found this post helpful and I wish you all a fun-filled and happy rest of the summer holidays. We look forward to welcoming you at Witherdens Hall Organic Spa Retreat very soon.

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