Summer is officially here and after the last few years of uncertainty and stress, everyone deserves to have some fun. But we know it can feel overwhelming planning events and activities when you’ve got a new baby in tow.
It’s really common to feel out of your comfort zone when you go to new places - what if there’s nowhere to feed the baby, or what if they do a poonami in the car or in a field? We’ve been there, babies always seem to have a great sense of timing!
But if you’re feeling up for it and want to get out and about in the coming months, there are loads of family-friendly options whether it is just for the day or perhaps exploring a festival!
National Trust - we love National Trust places! They are usually really well set up for families of all ages. The scenery will be stunning, parking should be ample and there’s always a great cafe, toilets and shop.
Beaches - a beach can be a great day out, even with a small baby and the UK has some brilliant seaside resorts. Whether you just walk along the promenade with an ice cream or settle down on the beach for a few hours, we always feel like being near the sea is good for the mind and body!
Babies will love the feel of sand in their toes and once they’re old enough to sit up you can keep them busy for hours with sand and water play.
Cities - whether you use a buggy or carrier most cities are accessible for a day out with babies and toddlers. If your baby is still very small you might be able to manage a gallery or museum while they nap but otherwise there is plenty to do which will entertain them. Try a park, playground, baby cinema or just a walk in a park and a picnic.
Farms - a trip to the farm is a treat for all of the senses and even small babies will enjoy themselves. Many farms now have great cafes, soft play barns and entertainment for children of all ages. Pick Your Own fruit and veg is also a great activity for toddlers. Here are a few farms we’ve enjoyed:
Priory Farm, Redhill
Bocketts Farm, Fetcham
Garsons Farm, Esher and Titchfield
Crockford Bridge Farm, Addlestone
And of course, a useful checklist for what to pack:
Ok, we know a festival is a much bigger undertaking than a day out where you get to come home and sleep in your own bed. But some festivals are really well set up for families and have so much on offer for children of all ages. Music, dance and sensory attractions obviously take centre stage at most of them but there will be lots more to see too. We’ve spotted soft plays, farm animals, rides and science classes at some of the events happening this year.
You’ll need to be well-prepared if you’re planning to camp with babies and young children and we recommend researching family camping areas, washing facilities, the food on offer and how far you have to walk from the car parks. Most festival websites will have all of the details you need online and of course, if you don’t want to camp you can buy a day ticket instead!
Recommended festivals for families:
Camp Bestival, Dorset (28th - 31st July)
Deer Shed Festival, North Yorkshire (29th - 31st July)
Green Man, Wales (18th - 21st August)
Just So Festival, Cheshire (19th - 21st August)
Shambala Festival, Market Harborough (25th - 28th August)