Travel in Portsmouth, Hayling Island and Bournemouth: suggestions for children?

(7 Posts)
Fourtoadore Mon 09-Jun-14 13:01:06

Hi all.

DP and I are bringing our kids (4 under 6) from Australia to England this (northern) Summer. We're spending a little time in London, and we're going to LegoLand, but then spending most of our time down south - Portsmouth, Hayling Island, Bournemouth. DP is English and has family over there. We've both travelled over a fair bit but this will be our first time with all the kids.

Anyway... just wondering... special deals, must-see places, day trips? We love theme parks, so any special deals/ coupons/ sites? We're going to Paulton Park (sp?), Thorpe Park, Alton Towers, LegoLand, Thomas the Tank (something DP knows of, not sure what it's called exactly, sorry?) (that's a lot of theme parks!) and are considering a jaunt to Disneyland Paris. We also enjoy day trips, museums etc. And of course, the beach! We want to keep our tribe busy and make the most of our time over there.

Oh, and GunWharf Quays, of course! smile

Any other must dos, any place for coupons, any recommendations for family-friendly restaurants or parks?

Thanks, in anticipation! smile

Hippopotamousse Tue 10-Jun-14 16:37:30

Hi, I have recently moved to the Southampton area and have a boy who is 9 months old. Marwell Zoo might be worth a visit - we haven't been yet but know a few Mums who have taken their kids along and said it was good.

If you are looking for things to do locally the following site may be useful and has a few vouchers: hampshireattractions.co.uk/offers/

Hope this helps!

Fourtoadore Wed 11-Jun-14 12:12:27

Thanks heaps for that, Hippo! That site is great - just what I was hoping for! - so have printed some of those coupons smile

SixImpossible Wed 11-Jun-14 12:24:52

Portsmouth Royal Naval Dockyard - fantastic. Tickets allow you to return, so visit it early in your trip and you can come again if you haven't seen everything.

Brownsea Island in the middle of Poole Harbour - a nice green amble in the only location in southern England where native brown squirrels stil live wild. Also the location of the first ever Scout camp, and the inspiration for Enid Blyton's Kirrin Island.

Talking of Enid Blyton: Corfe Castle - a fabulous ruined castle, the inspiration for Kirrin Castle, on a hill overlooking the village of the same name. In the village there is a massive scale model of the castle. Our dc have always enjoyed visiting both (castle first). Youcan go there by steam train, but I can't remember the route. Googleable, I'm sure.

Shell Beach (Shell Bay?) is a lovely beach just the other side of the Poole chain ferry from Bournemouth. By British standards it's gorgeous, by Australian standards probably tame! You can park near it IIRC, or a little further away and walk through a marshland nature reserve to get there. There is a shellfish restaurant just the other side of the road, which was always highly recommended, but we never got to eat there and I just cannot remember its name!

SixImpossible Wed 11-Jun-14 12:34:12

I just had a look on Google maps, and I think I'm conflating two beaches. Shelll Bay is indeed right next to the ferry, with a walk from the car park, but the one where the car park is right next to the beach is a National Trust beach a couple of miles further down the road.

CatL Wed 11-Jun-14 14:21:36

Had a nice holiday in poole last year with then 3yo dd. Successful days out were Paultons park, monkey world and the beaches between Poole and Bournemouth - sandbanks and something chine?

My mother in law lives in Hampshire and there we have enjoyed marwell zoo and, for a lower key day out, Staunton park which has a farm, maze, small soft play etc.

Not sure about discounts as we often use tesco clubcard vouchers for days out, and you presumably won't be able to accrue them in Australia, but try the website www. Moneysavingexpert.com to search for discounts. Also maybe worth looking into Merlin passes if you are going to lots of theme parks.

Hope you have a great time!

I

CatL Wed 11-Jun-14 14:21:58

Had a nice holiday in poole last year with then 3yo dd. Successful days out were Paultons park, monkey world and the beaches between Poole and Bournemouth - sandbanks and something chine?

My mother in law lives in Hampshire and there we have enjoyed marwell zoo and, for a lower key day out, Staunton park which has a farm, maze, small soft play etc.

Not sure about discounts as we often use tesco clubcard vouchers for days out, and you presumably won't be able to accrue them in Australia, but try the website www. Moneysavingexpert.com to search for discounts. Also maybe worth looking into Merlin passes if you are going to lots of theme parks.

Hope you have a great time!

I

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