When the Kids Don't want to go!  Inspiring Family Walks.

When the Kids Don't want to go! Inspiring Family Walks.

Cover Image Credit: Athena Mellor @athenamellor

We have all faced the challenge of finding activities that will get the kids, especially older children, off their devices and into the great outdoors.  We all know that once out there, the experience takes over and the adventure captivates them.  However, where to go that's new and exciting?  Here are some inspirational walks which are almost magical. There's something for all ages to enjoy, and for children especially, to fall in love with nature and the wonderful world we live in.

I hope these suggestions inspire you to embark on your own family adventures and create lasting memories together.

The Fairy Glen, Isle of Skye, Scotland

Image Credit - MyBestPlace.com

This enchanting spot is like stepping into a fairy tale!  It's whimsical landscape of cone-shaped hills, small glens, and waterfalls, is simply breath-taking and it captures the imagination of everyone.  It is not a tricky walk, the terrain is suitable for younger children, so this is a wonderful place for the whole family.  The Isle of Skye is a little off the beaten track, but it is not too difficult to access from the West Coast of Scotland over the Skye Bridge.  The whole island is well worth a trip, but The Fairy Glen is a must see.

The Lost Gardens of Heligan, Cornwall

Image Credit - dayoutwiththekids.co.uk

From the far north to the far south, Cornwall is another amazing holiday destination for families, and The Lost Gardens of Heligan is a great reason to make the trip.  Once neglected, these gardens have been restored to their former glory, featuring a jungle, ancient woodlands, and mysterious sculptures all waiting to be discovered.  Children will love spotting the hidden sculptures, and the jungle is an adventurer's dream come true.  There are lots of different terrains so it never gets boring.  The park does feature a nice café at the end where you can enjoy a Cornish Pasty after your walk!

Puzzlewood, Forest of Dean, Gloucestershire 

Image Credit - visitdeanwyevalley.co.uk

In the heart of the Forest of Dean is this ancient, intriguing woodland. There is a maze of pathways taking your through moss-covered rocks, twisted trees, and hidden grottoes.  It has often been cited as the inspiration for J.R.R. Tolkien's Middle-earth.  It is otherworldly, with bridges and caves to explore as well as plenty of opportunities to discover the rich history of the area and the forest.  Good footwear is a must as it can be really uneven and muddy underfoot.  But be sure to bring your camera, as this is a landscape you do not want to forget. 

Dovedale, Peak District, Derbyshire

Image credit - thirdeyetraveller.com

There are so many wonderful spaces in the Peak District but Dovedale is one of the most beautiful. Known for its distinctive limestone formations, the Dale, which is carved by the river Dove, stretches for around 3 miles. It is the perfect blend of tranquil riverside walking and impressive geological features. There are two highlights to look out for.  The stepping stones across the River Dove are a playful challenge for the whole family.  Furthermore, a short detour from the main path will lead you to Thor's Cave.  A natural limestone structure which is big enough to explore. An abundance of flora and fauna are yours for the spotting too.  The path is well maintained but in some areas you need to be extra careful and vigilant of little feet! 

Carrick-a-Rede Rope Bridge, County Antrim, Northern Ireland

Image Credit - northernislandholidays.co.uk

The Carrick-a-Rede Rope Bridge is one of Northern Ireland’s most iconic and exciting attractions. Located near Ballintoy in County Antrim, this historic bridge connects the mainland to the tiny island of Carrick-a-Rede, offering visitors an exhilarating experience along with stunning coastal views. The bridge is a 20 metre rope bridge which hangs 30 metres above the sea!  It is not for the faint of heart, but if your kids have an adventurous spirit then this will be a wonderful experience.  You may also see some wildlife - there is an abundance of sea birds, such as puffins, guillemots and razorbills which nest on the cliffs.  If you are lucky, you may catch site of dolphins and basking sharks in the water below.  You will absolutely see the breath-taking views and on a clear day, a glimpse of the Scottish coast. 

Helpful Hints

Heading on adventurous walks with kids is always a bigger undertaking than with adults, so if you are just beginning to take your kids on more adventures, here are some top tips from parents who have done it all before! 

  • Check the terrain, inclines and difficulty levels.  If your kid gets too tired, bored or their feet get wet, it is no fun for anyone.
  • Take lots of their favourite snacks as well as water or juice.  Picnicking in the outdoors is so joyous and will add to the love of the trail. 
  • Remember to stop when your kids want to explore something.  It doesn't matter if you complete the trail, or get to the destination.  The important thing when you are starting out is to foster a love of the outdoors.  This could begin really small, and you won't get away from the river playing "Pooh Sticks" for over an hour.  But it doesn't matter. Just enjoy it!


Here is some Sunday inspiration to help you and your family get outdoors more! 


Trails with Kids Inspiration

Best Podcast


The Kidventures podcast is full of inspiration, advice and recommendations from some of the UKs top travel experts!  Hosted by Cathy and Ting form travel blogs, Mummytravels.com and my-travelmonkey.com.  

Favourite Book

Balanced and Barefoot - By Angela J Hanscom

We all know the importance of the outdoors in our personal wellness.  It is the same for kids.  In fact, it goes further.  The outdoors offers the perfect playground for discover, education, sensory and ability development, problem solving and more. 


Favourite Song

There's Nothing Holding Me Back - Sean Mendes

A favourite with kids and adults alike, this is a great song to soundtrack your adventures - listen in the car on the way, and leap out, ready to go for it! 



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