When the Play-Doh and finger-painting just aren’t hitting the mark, SoGlos has handpicked some fun and unique ways to keep your toddler engaged and active in Gloucestershire – from messy play to skiing lessons!
1. Gruffalo spotting for toddlers at Dean Heritage Centre
Toddle into the woodland and find out if there’s such thing as a Gruffalo at Dean Heritage Centre, which has its very own trail inspired by Julia Donaldson’s beloved story. Little ones can point out the characters, carved by the centre’s own site manager, while grown-ups will have no trouble pushing buggies along the gravel path.
Toddlers can interact with the exhibits too, stepping inside the reconstructed forester’s cottage and having a go at old fashioned playtime games at the Victorian classroom. And, as a bonus, children aged three and under can visit for free!
2. Messy play for toddlers at Cotswold Farm Park
Tots can get stuck in at Cotswold Farm Park, splashing and squelching their way through colourful activities inside the Adventure Barn, with dedicated messy play sessions every month.
Then, head over to the Discovery Barn to meet the animals, create castles in the sandpit and ride on the pedal-on tractors – with access to the Farm Park for the rest of the day included in the messy play tickets.
3. Rock climbing for toddlers at The Warehouse
Fearless toddlers can brave the climbing wall and have a go at autobelay climbing in a playful, parental-supervised session at The Warehouse in Gloucester.
Aimed at little ones aged three to school age – with fun activities on the ground that will appeal to smaller tots, too – the Mini Mice sessions also feature the sensory DigiWall, a low-level electronic climbing wall that responds to touch with lights, sounds and interactive games.
4. Playtime for toddlers at Cattle Country Farm Park
As well as dedicated play zones for toddlers, including an outdoor play area and separate play barn, there’s tonnes for tots to do at Cattle Country Farm Park in Berkeley – from waving at the animals along the farm trail to making a splash in the summer months, when the attraction opens its splash pool.
During term-time, parents can take their little ones along for GRAZE & Play, which gives them access to the toddler play barn and farm trail for just £5 per child. It’s free for supervising adults and children under one to go along, plus a great excuse to try something tasty from the café, GRAZE.
5. Gymnastics for toddlers in Gloucestershire
Lively little ones can perfect their forward rolls and cartwheels at a gymnastics class, where they can get involved with everything from foam pits and trampolines to beams and bars.
There’s gymnastics activities for toddlers all over Gloucestershire, including parent and child classes at Cheltenham and Gloucester Gymnastics Club; pre-school gymnastics at Gloucester’s GL1 Leisure Centre and the North Cotswolds Gymnastics and Trampolining Academy in Bourton-on-the-Water; as well as Tumble Tots, which has classes in Churchdown, Charlton Kings, Hatherley, Quedgeley and Cooper’s Edge.
6. Rugby activities for toddlers at Rugbytots in Cheltenham and Gloucester
With various classes in Cheltenham and Gloucester, Rugbytots encourages energetic toddlers to let off some steam with fun and interactive rugby-themed sessions.
Teaching children to kick, pass, run with the ball and catch, the sessions are a great way for toddlers to develop their hand-eye coordination, learn how to play as part of a team and socialise with other children, too.
7. Pottery painting activities for toddlers at Dixie Dot Crafts in Gloucester
Grown-ups can get stuck in with their little ones at Dixie Dot Crafts in Gloucester, which hosts fun and creative pre-school craft and painting sessions on selected dates.
Artsy toddlers will get to make themed crafts, using tools like glue sticks and paintbrushes, with refreshments provided and a story time to round of the hour. Just be prepared to get a bit mucky!
8. Ballet for toddlers in Gloucestershire
Teaching toddlers to point their twinkle toes and practice their pirouettes, babyballet runs dance classes for little ones as young as six months old up to age four, with sessions taking place at venues all over the county.
Introducing children to ballet in a fun and relaxed environment, the classes aim to build their confidence as dancers by showing them the basics through movement, play and song.
9. Skiing lessons for toddlers at Gloucester Ski and Snowboard Centre
Pre-schoolers can start to set their sights on snow-covered mountains, learning how to ski at the country’s longest dry slope at Gloucester Ski and Snowboard Centre – offering skiing lessons for ‘Snowcubs’ aged three to six.
Beginning with basic movements to completing their first ever ski runs, as well as practicing speed control and manoeuvres, mini skiers can get their first taste of après-ski too, with a dedicated kids’ menu at the on-site café bar.
10. Outdoor play experiences for toddlers at Cerney House Gardens
Bringing some messy fun to the quaint Cerney House Gardens, Roots Shoots Muddy Boots encourages children to embrace the great outdoors with its sensory play adventures.
From creating potions and perfumes with water and special props to capturing their imagination with themed small world play, the activities are suitable for babies, toddlers and young children – with plenty of safe garden space for small explorers to roam as well.
11. Language activities for toddlers in Cheltenham
Helping tots to find their voice, Phonetics with Robot Reg offers high-energy classes that teach children early phonetic skills, with sessions available for one- to four-year-olds in and around Cheltenham.
Diverse and educational, the sessions use games, props and activities to help children develop their speaking and listening skills in an engaging and accessible way. As well as being lots of fun, it provides the foundations for key skills like reading and writing, too.