11 of the best experience days

Encompassing 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.

Whether you’re an adrenaline junkie, wannabe Richard Hammond, or animal lover, there are plenty of amazing experiences waiting to be discovered in and around Gloucestershire.

Perfect for special gifts, memorable celebrations, and group activities, there’s something for everyone to enjoy – and SoGlos has rounded up its favourite experience days, in this hot list sponsored by Land Rover Experience.

For more information about Land Rover Experience Eastnor call (01531) 638777, or visit experience.landrover.com directly.

1. Land Rover Experience Eastnor

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Offering an exhilarating day out within a dramatic setting, Land Rover Experience allows visitors to get behind the wheel and drive around the 5,000-acre Eastnor Estate, promising an exciting journey with gorgeous views to boot.

Comprised of diverse terrain across 43 miles, the motoring attraction has a number of packages available, ranging from tasters and full-day experiences, to dedicated young driver experiences, meaning there’s something for everyone to enjoy!

Guests can choose from one-hour tasters, half- , or full-day experiences, all of which tackle inclines, descents and wading. Other options include the Eastnor Explorer which takes to the world’s most historic and challenging Land Rover trails; a Classic Drive Experience; and an Advanced Experience for confident drivers.

2. 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 and tasting sessions, to battle sports.

In addition to hosting regular tours, Hillside Brewery offers a range of half- and full-day packages, such as the Battlezone Archery and Brewery Tour; Battlezone Archery, Clay Pigeon and Brewery Tour; and an Iron Forging Experience Day.

3. Cotswold Wildlife Park

Sure 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, penguins, rhinos and reptiles.

4. 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 span artisan cookery; baking; bread making; children’s classes; dietary classes; fish, game and meat classes; raw food; seasonal classes; skills; vegetarian cookery; and world food.

5. Ian Coley Shooting School

Ian Coley Shooting School, one of the UK’s top 10, 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.

6. Go Ape

Take your experience to new heights at Go Ape in the Forest of Dean, a hugely popular high ropes course nestled among ancient woodlands, and making for an exciting adventure for all ages.

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. Meanwhile, the Forest Segway allows visitors to hop on board and explore the historic woodlands via unique transport.

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 11 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 the wonderful and interesting animals, the experiences include highlights such as handling sessions and flying the birds.

9. Cotswold Helicopter Centre

Aviation enthusiasts are in for a treat at Cotswold Helicopter Centre, which offers a personalised service and number of airborne experiences including trial lessons and hover challenges.

Whether you’re seeking excitement in the air, or are an aspiring pilot, experiences include trial lessons aboard G2 and R44 models, as well as a hover challenge for two which tests control and concentration.

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 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 idea venue for water sports, while the venue can also host bespoke group activities which are perfect for groups of friends and parties looking for something a little different.

By Kathryn Purvis

© SoGlos
Monday 06 November 2017

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