Saturday 22 February 2020

11 of the best experience days

With everything from off-road adventures and brewery tours to clay pigeon shooting and water sports, SoGlos rounds up 11 of the best experience days in and around Gloucestershire.

Find 11 of the best experience days in Gloucestershire in this handy hot list.
Great for gifts, celebrations or group get togethers, find an unforgettable experience in this round up.

About the sponsor – Woodchester Valley Vineyard

Woodchester Valley Vineyard is a family owned and award-winning venue in the Cotswolds. Offering fantastic value tours and tasting experiences, Woodchester Valley Vineyard produces its own rosé, white and sparkling wines.

Having opened in 2007, Woodchester Valley Vineyard has three vineyard sites in the Stroud valleys as well as its own Cellar Door shop in South Woodchester, where visitors can purchase its award-winning wines and gift vouchers to take home.

For more information about Woodchester Valley Vineyard, visit

1. Wine tasting and tours at Woodchester Valley Vineyard

Offering both group and private tours, Woodchester Valley Vineyard promises a great day out in the Cotswolds. Including everything from discovering how the vines are encouraged to grow, how the wine is made, which blends are fermented in which barrels and a chance to take in the breathtaking views across the vineyard, the tour is a great group activity.

For the tasting experience, guests will get to swirl, sip and enjoy generous glasses of delicious Woodchester wine, all of which costs £15 per person including the vineyard tour! What’s more, sparkling wine tours are also now available.

With bottles costing as little as £10.50 from the tasting room, guests can take homes the vegan friendly wines or book one of the vineyard’s luxury holiday cottages for an overnight experience to remember.

2. Cotswold Wildlife Park

Certain to delight animal lovers, Cotswold Wildlife Park gives visitors the chance to be keeper for the day, gaining practical experience working with its resident animals, with activities including mucking out, preparing food, and doing the feeding.

The fun-filled day offers the unique opportunity to go behind-the-scenes at the wildlife attraction, working with the keepers on a one-to-one basis and getting up-close and personal to animals such as lemurs, giraffes, penguins and reptiles.

3. Harts Barn Cookery School

Pop on your chef’s hat and head to Harts Barn Cookery School for a hands-on cooking experience in the Forest of Dean. Whether you’re passionate about baking, want to perfect the art of pasta making, or are hoping to master a new cuisine, there are plenty of classes to choose from.

Offering an experience for all abilities, cooking categories include artisan cookery; baking; bread making; children’s classes; dietary classes; fish, game and meat classes; seasonal classes; vegetarian and vegan cookery; and world food.

4. Ian Coley Shooting School

Ian Coley Shooting School, one of the UK’s top 10 of its kind, promises an enjoyable experience for beginners and advanced shooters alike, who can enjoy clay pigeon shooting and air rifle sessions.

Visitors shooting clays will be equipped with either a 12- or 20-gauge shotgun and aided by an instructor to hit a variety of targets; while those taking to the air rifle range can opt for supervised or unsupervised sessions.

5. Go Ape

Take your experience to new heights at Go Ape in the Forest of Dean, a hugely popular high ropes course nestled amongst ancient woodlands.

Visitors can get active tackling rope ladders, leaping off Tarzan swings, and zooming down zip wires, during their Tree Top Adventure; while little ones can enjoy the Tree Top Junior course at Beechenhurst. Meanwhile, the Forest Segway allows visitors to hop on board and explore the historic woodlands via unique transport.

6. Hillside Brewery

Beer fans and thrill-seekers can head to Hillside Brewery in the Forest of Dean for a unique and exciting experience, with packages including everything from archery tag and tasting sessions, through to battle sports.

In addition to hosting regular tours, Hillside Brewery offers a range of half- and full-day packages, such as the Archery Tag and Brewery Tour; Bubble Football and Brewery Tour; and a Beer and Pilates Experience Day.

7. The Warehouse

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An impressive climbing centre in Gloucester, The Warehouse boasts a variety of climbing walls, a bouldering floor and indoor caves just waiting to be explored, promising an adrenaline-fuelled experience for all ages.

The centre’s climbing walls reach up for 13 metres which allow for gentle and more challenging climbs, while the 4,400 square foot bouldering floor features multi-faceted zones, geometric panels, complex shapes and dynamic angles, allowing for energetic low-level climbing.

8. International Centre for Birds of Prey

The International Centre for Birds of Prey hosts a number of experiences during the year, allowing visitors to get up-close and personal to its owls, falcons, hawks and raptors during either half- or full-day sessions.

Whether you love a particular breed, or want to find out more about these wonderful and interesting animals, the experiences include highlights such as handling sessions and flying the birds.

9. Caving at Clearwell Caves

With everything from informative self-guided visits to deep level caving, Clearwell Caves offers a day out like no other.

Guided tours will unveil the secret history of the caves, the bats that live inside and discover the stories of the children that were forced to work in the caves. For thrill seekers, the deep level caving experience will take you 62 metres underground for an adventure in the caves.

10. Tudor Farmhouse

Take a walk on the wild side during a foraging expedition at Tudor Farmhouse, which hosts enjoyable trips off the beaten track in the Forest of Dean and Wye Valley areas, led by its in-house forager Raoul van Den Brouck.

The group sessions run on specific dates during the year and make for an enjoyable and insightful experience, discovering seasonally-growing crops such as wild garlic, sorrel, edible mushrooms, and wild strawberries.

11. Croft Farm Waterpark

Hit the waters at Croft Farm Waterpark near Tewkesbury, with activities such as stand-up paddle-boarding, windsurfing, canoeing and sailing – promising heaps of exhilarating fun for all ages.

With courses as well as shorter experiences available, Croft Farm’s lake is the ideal venue for water sports, with options for bespoke group activities, perfect for groups of friends or parties, looking for something a little different.

For more information about Woodchester Valley Vineyard, visit

© SoGlos
Tuesday 10 December 2019

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