With February half term just around the corner, why not make the first holiday of the year extra special with a Lake District adventure? To give you a helping hand, we've picked out just some of the ways you may like to spend your time in the Lakes!
Get creative with children's activities at Rheged, Penrith, throughout half term
As always, Rheged has a packed programme of activities for children, which is perfect if the weather's a little grey outside! This February half term, children can learn skills in printmaking, 3D printing, screen printing and animation, or train to be an agent in Rheged's spy academy! Rheged also welcomes Professor Pumpernickel's Mind-Bending Science Show and the family theatre production, Alice in Wonderland.
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Go wild at Brockhole on Windermere!
Brockhole has lots of activities for families with children this half term, including its Wildlife Winter Survival Trail, which continues until 26th February 2017. Listen to fun local folk tales and urban myths at The Magic of Storytelling (19th), and enjoy some Minibeast Magic with Silverband, where you can see a bearded dragon, find out how Milly the Mombassa Train Millipede defends herself, and watch the scorpions as they change colour (23rd)! There's also face painting (18th and 20th) and try out your circus skills, including plate spinning, with Brockhole's circus workshops (24th). Booking advised except for the Survival Trail.
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Drop in to see the latest exhibitions at Keswick Museum and Art Gallery, throughout half term
Well worth a visit during your time in Keswick, Keswick Museum features three exhibitions over half term. The first is a collection of Lakeland climbing and landscape photographs by the Abraham Brothers, who began climbing in Keswick in the 1890s using their mother's washing line (definitely don't try this for yourself!), and recorded their adventures using enormous glass plate cameras! A further collection features modern-day images by Henry Iddon, created on a 100-year-old camera used by the brothers, whilst the third exhibition explores the legacy of pioneering mountain climber Joe Tasker.
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Wander around the gardens at Holker Hall on its Snowdrop Weekends, 17th-19th and 24th- 26th February 2017
Usually closed through the winter months, Holker Hall's splendid gardens will be open for just two weekends in February to celebrate the snowdrop season and the gardens and parkland emerging from their winter slumber!
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Watch a half term show or concert at the Theatre by the Lake, Keswick
If they enjoyed the movie, kids won't want to miss the Theatre by the Lake's family-friendly stage performance of 'Babe, The Sheep-Pig', featuring amazing puppetry and original music, with two evening performances and one matinée! (20th and 21st February 2017, suitable for ages 5+). The Royal Northern Sinfonia's family half term concert of Peter and the Wolf takes place at 3pm on Sunday 19th, or from 21st-23rd, Mavis Sparkle, a tale about a travelling cleaner with a talent for magic!
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Take a look at Abbot Hall Art Gallery's latest exhibition, George Shaw: My Back to Nature, Kendal, until 11th March 2017
Abbot Hall's first exhibition this year features paintings from the National Gallery in London, which were created by Turner Prize nominee George Shaw, who spent two years there as Associate Artist (2014-16). His paintings feature woodland scenes near suburban areas, inspired by paintings of woodland in the National Gallery's collection.
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Seek adventure at Treetop Nets and Treetop Trek, Brockhole, near Windermere
Open all year round, this is a great outdoor activity based at Brockhole-on-Windermere, and is suitable for all the family. With Treetop Treks you can take on 35 exciting treetop challenges, during which you'll climb, balance and swing through Brockhole's ancient woodland canopy! You'll always be connected to a continuous safety cable, and speed down the final zip wire to complete the course - perfect for ages five years and over! With Treetop Nets, you're completely surrounded by three-metre walls of netting, without the need for harnesses - suitable for three years and above. Booking essential.
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Let off steam at Kong Adventure, Keswick
If the weather isn't playing ball outdoors, Kong Adventure is the perfect place for the kids to let off steam indoors! With a climbing wall, indoor cave system, ice wall, and café with children's hard play area and Wi-Fi, there's something to keep every member of the family happy!
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Enjoy the views from Blackwell, The Arts and Crafts House, Bowness-on-Windermere
A truly beautiful setting from which to enjoy the winter views over Windermere, Blackwell is a significant example of architecture and interior design from the Arts and Crafts movement. Its latest exhibitions include the work of artists Griet Beyaert and Paul Miller, who bring together glass sculpture and digital technology, and contemporary ceramic artists Richard Slee and Carol McNicoll.
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Make a bird box or willow creature at Whinlatter Forest, 21st and 23rd February 2017
Whinlatter, England's only true mountain forest, is a destination for all seasons, with walks suitable for every taste and ability, bike trails, an onsite café, and the Whinlatter WildPlay trail for children, which has nine different play zones! This half term you can also take part in activities that include making a bird box (on the 21st) and willow weaving (23rd)!
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Walk an alpaca with Alpacaly Ever After!
Have you ever secretly dreamed of owning your own alpacas? Well, here's the next best thing! Alpacaly Ever After are now offering Lake District walks with these characterful animals in the fabulous private grounds of the Lingholm Estate at Portinscale, near Keswick. Lingholm was one of the country houses at which Beatrix Potter stayed on her many family holidays in the Lakes, and was the source of much inspiration when writing her famous tales! You can also book 'meet the alpacas' tours at the Lake District Distillery near Bassenthwaite every weekend, or from Wednesday to Sunday during half term week! Booking for all sessions is essential.
Feel the Force at the Beacon Museum’s interactive science exhibition, Whitehaven
Head out to the Georgian coastal town of Whitehaven for a fun learning experience at The Beacon Museum. Help the kids discover the forces at work on them when they ride a bike, walk into the wind, or go around a corner in the back of the car. Families can experiment and learn together in this large-scale exhibition.
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Catch a movie at Keswick Film Festival, 16th-19th February 2017
With individual tickets, day passes and festival passes available, choose from a wide selection of films at the 18th Keswick Film Festival - you'll be spoilt for choice!
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We hope you've found lots of inspiration for things to do in the Lakes this half term! To help you find your ideal cottage in the perfect location, take a look at the online search facility.
Other posts that may help you plan your half term break: