14 fantastic outdoor family activities in Gloucestershire

SoGlos has rounded up 14 fantastic outdoor activities that families can enjoy together in Gloucestershire – whether you're a sporty, adventure-loving or culture-seeking bunch.

Soak up fresh air and enjoy quality family time, with SoGlos handpicking 14 outdoor activity ideas for fun-loving families in Gloucestershire.

Spanning heart-pumping sporting activities and adventures for all ages to more laid-back and leisurely pursuits and the chance to try a new hobby with loved ones.

About the sponsor – East Glos Club

14 fantastic outdoor family activities in Gloucestershire hot list sponsor East Glos Club

Whether you’re completely new to tennis or an experienced player, the 28 all-weather tennis courts at East Glos Club in Cheltenham are the perfect place to brush up on your skills – or pass them onto the next generation.

There are also four squash courts, as well as professional coaching for players of all ages and abilities, as well as discounted membership for parents and children joining together, so the whole family can get involved.

For more information, visit eastglos.co.uk.

1. Pick up a racquet in Gloucestershire

Children playing tennis at East Glos Club in Cheltenham

The family-friendly East Glos Club on the Old Bath Road in Cheltenham has 28 all-weather tennis courts for generations to practice their serves, volleys and smashes throughout the seasons.

Tennis players of all abilities are welcome at the club – even absolute beginners, with a free half hour coaching session for new members. And there’s a fantastic East Glos Club junior tennis programme for children aged three to fifteen years old too.

2. Meet the animals in Gloucestershire

Animal-loving families can meet feathered, fluffy and even scaly friends at one of the Gloucestershire’s popular attractions – with everything from farm parks to wildlife centres offering outdoor activities.

A few options include Cotswold Farm Park, with its resident rare breed farm animals; Slimbridge Wetland Centre, where you can see flamingos, kingfishers and ducklings; and Crocodiles of the World just over the Oxfordshire border, where visitors can get close to alligators and crocs.

3. Play king at castles in Gloucestershire

Offering the chance for adults to soak up history and for kids to explore, families can walk in the steps of royalty during a day at one of Gloucestershire’s magnificent castles.

Outdoors, Sudeley Castle is home to an assault course and adventure playground that's sure to delight youngsters, while Berkeley Castle kids can hunt for mythical creatures on its dragon trail.

4. Take to the trees in Gloucestershire

Go on a high ropes outdoor adventure in the heart of ancient woodlands, with a visit to one of two Go Ape’s in the Forest of Dean. Go Ape Mallards Pike includes zip wires, swings, rope ladders and obstacles galore with a Tree Top Challenge suitable for ages 10 and upwards.

While younger children can still get involved in the outdoor action at Go Ape Beechenhurst, which welcomes mini adventurers over a metre-tall, who can go canopy exploring, trail blazing and zip wiring.

5. Discover gorgeous gardens in Gloucestershire

Gloucestershire is full of stunning gardens that are bursting with life throughout the seasons – perfect for leisurely strolls and stopping to smell the flowers.

The 18th century Painswick Rococo Garden is full of bright colours and quirky follies, with a woodland play area and children’s trails. Or head to Hidcote Manor Garden for an art-inspired experience and secret gardens to discover.

6. Explore woodlands in Gloucestershire

Gloucestershire is brimming with tree-rific places to explore as a family. From the themed trails in the Forest of Dean, to the beautiful Batsford Arboretum, with its glorious green spaces to let the kids run free.

Soak up some fresh air with a family woodland walk, kicking leaves, soaking up the sights, and blowing off the cobwebs with the whole family in tow.

7. Get on your bike in Gloucestershire

Get out and explore the Gloucestershire countryside on two wheels with a family bike ride at one of the county’s many beauty spots. With SoGlos’s 11 places to get on your bike in Gloucestershire packed with inspiration.

Cannop Cycle Centre has a family friendly cycle trail as well as thrilling downhill trails for more experienced mountain bikers. There’s also Pedalabikeaway offering bike hire for a morning, afternoon or full day.

8. Hunt for the Gruffalo in Gloucestershire

He has might have terrible tusks, and terrible claws. And terrible teeth in his terrible jaws… but intrepid explorers will find the famous Julia Donaldson character the Gruffalo and his friends lurking in the woods all over Gloucestershire.

Follow the Gruffalo Trail at the Dean Heritage Centre in Soudley, look out for sculptures of the Gruffalo and Gruffalo’s Child at Westonbirt Arboretum or have a go at Gruffalo Orienteering at Mallard’s Pike in the Forest of Dean.

9. Fly on a trapeze in Gloucestershire

There’s a fun opportunity to fly high above Cheltenham’s Pittville Park on an outdoor trapeze with All Bars Flying Trapeze Club.

Take to the skies and learn to ‘fly’ between the bars, under the watchful gaze of the club’s professional instructors. Suitable for children aged eight and above, classes are open to absolute beginners.

10. Putt some holes in Gloucestershire

Fore! A game that’s completely accessible for novices and youngsters, crazy golf offers a light-hearted activity, with outdoor courses across Gloucestershire.

Between Cheltenham and Tewkesbury, there’s the pirate-themed Sherdon’s Adventure Golf. With Krazy Golf Lydney and Wye Valley Miniature Golf both in the Forest of Dean.

11. Ride a steam train in Gloucestershire

Step back in time and hop onto a steam train, for a journey that’s sure to excite children, parents and grandparents alike.

Gloucestershire Warwickshire Railway runs two different experiences on a heritage steam train or 1960s diesel rail car; Dean Forest Railway encompasses five stations to hop on and off at, plus a range of heritage, diesel and steam vehicles; while the smaller Perrygrove Railway offers the chance to enjoy a short journey through the woodland.

12. Try archery in Gloucestershire

The whole family can feel like Robin Hood and his Merry Men – or Women – with an archery session at Forest of Dean Adventure.

For the more competitive, Hillside Archery has combined archery with dodgeball to make archery tag, for an adrenaline-fuelled family day out.

13. Head underground in Gloucestershire

Clearwell Caves, the well-known Forest of Dean attraction near Coleford, promises plenty of underground exploring fun, a fascinating history and some amazing natural sights.

The working mining museum within the atmospheric caverns is suitable for youngsters and adults alike, with visitors aged over 7 also able to go on deeper, adventure caving trips.

14. Climb to new heights in Gloucestershire

Energetic families can get active with a climbing or bouldering session outdoors in Gloucestershire, with centres dotted throughout the county and offering facilities for all ages with a head for heights.

Outdoor climbing venues include Far Peak in Northleach, which is home to activities including bouldering and a range of climbing courses. Adventurous families can also try their hand at scaling Symonds Yat Rock with Wyedean Canoe and Activity Centre for a spectacular view from the top.

For more information, visit eastglos.co.uk.

© SoGlos
Monday 03 August 2020

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