It may feel like the kids have just gone back to school, but with Easter just around the corner, be prepared for another two and half weeks of entertaining your little ones.
Half terms don’t have to break the bank, though! From cheap days out to tricks and deals plus activities, we have ideas that won’t leave your wallet broken in two.
If you are looking for more free things to do then this post by Exploring Dorset will help.
Easter Egg Hunts
If you don’t like the idea of splashing out on an official event, then why not do it yourself, and it doesn’t have to be a chocolate one either.
Using leftover or out of date eggs work like a charm, especially if you plan to paint them and use them that day.
Now, I’m not overly artistic, and that would normally put me off, but that’s the charm with these eggs. Everyone can get involved regardless of artistic talent.
There are loads of ways to do this, but I prefer hand painting, as it means the kids can get involved without too much input from me.
What You’ll Need
Out of date or leftover eggs
Paints or food dye
PVA Glue (optional)
Hair dryer (Optional)
This is so simple it’s crazy. Using eggs you would normally throw away, boil them up for 7 minutes in a pan, making sure you have no more than 4 boiling at once.
Let them cool, then start decorating.
No need for acrylic paints unless you’re a budding artist. I use normal Range bought paint and they work fine.
It’s easier (ok, less messy) if you paint one-half, leave it to dry in the egg cup then paint the other. If you have a 2 and 4-year-old like me though or just don’t want to wait, then use a hair dryer to blow them dry at super quick speed.
You can go as crazy or as conservative as you like! Mine love painting then covering them with PVA Glue and drowning them in glitter. Stickers, wire or just googly eyes work.
Then hide them. As long as everyone doesn’t throw them around they will last all day! Win!
£1 for one-month Kids Pass
For a one month trial of a £1, you can get a Kids Pass that lets you get 40% off cinema tickets, kids eat free offers and entrance into over 5,000 places across the UK for free.
My kids love nothing more than a bus ride into town or a train ride to a different park.
Using the Family & Friends Railcard gets up to two adults a third off travel as long as you are traveling with the kids. It’s normally £30 for the year, but in till Monday 24th April, you can get £5 off by quoting MSEASTER at the checkout.
If you prefer buses, then there are loads of unlimited £2 ticket rides available here.
2 for 1 Tickets
If it’s a big day out you’re after, then look out for the promotional packs of Kellogg’s cereal. They offer buy 1 adult or kid ticket full price and get another in free.
Places include Alton Towers, Legoland, Thorpe Park, Chessington, Sealife Centres around the UK and Madame Tussauds.
Loads of shops offer instore experience days to get you through the door. Take advantage, but try not to fall for the sales pitch.
Experience days normally include Lego builds, pet workshops, craft and art sessions.
You don’t have to have a love of books to visit a library nowadays. Packed full with half term activities, most libraries across the country now offer computer sessions, crafts, writing competitions, song times and knitting groups.
The Great Outdoors
The possibilities are endless.
From feeding ducks to playing hide and seek to forest walks or nature treasure hunters, the world is your oyster.
My kids love making treasure maps and draw the objects they want to find, then tick them off as they see them. This can be a simple as a bird or tree for the 2-year-old to a horse riding dinosaur or spaceship for the 4-year-old.
Oh, and if you’re already an English Heritage member, then the kids go free!
If the kids are bored of the normal toys, then why not set out a tent and wait for nightfall. Of course, this depends on how old your kids are, but mine love dusk, where we look for the emerging stars and burn marshmallows on the burner.
Getting wet is another favourite. Get the hose out and have a water fight, or just fill up a bucket and get the kids to wash the car. Before you know it the car will be forgotten and water will be everywhere! Brill!
Mine love planting too. March and April are the perfect time to start planting fruit and vegetables, and hey who knows, as they’ve grown them they might even eat them? Maybe….
Rainy Day Fun
Lover of all things sweet, this is my personal favourite. We love baking, and what we make depends heavily on what I have leftover in the cupboard.
These cupcakes are great with little ones and can be decorated with ease.
MSE has a great thread of simple things to bake, my favourite being banana or carrot cake!
You could also make:
Your Own Playdoh
Your own kite
Depending on your kid’s ages, you could register for free event tickets. From theater to TV shows to festivals, everything is up for grabs.
Register with Applause Store for more details.
The Big Screen
A night at the movies normally costs big, with a drink and a snack costing the Earth, but did know that many cinemas offer cheaper alternatives?
Vue offers their Mini Mornings for just £2.49 a ticket.
Cineworld is just £2.50 and currently, have Moana as an option.
Meerkat Movies offer 2 for 1 tickets on a Tuesday and Wednesday when you sign up with Compare the Market.
Using Technology Outside
Again, this is age depended but mine love Geocaching!
If you have a smartphone, then geocaching is a fun way to amuse the whole family and learn about your local area plus have fun hunting for rewards.
This real-world outdoor treasure hunt hides ‘geocaches’ at certain locations, essentially plastic tubs containing hidden toy stashes.
It’s free to get started, and by entering your postcode, it will show you Geocaches near you. Then you enter the coordinates of your chosen site on your GPS app, and off you go!
Another obsession of my kids. Pokemon walks can be fun, and the kids won’t even know they’re walking.
Just download the app and get started. Catching the Pokemon are easy, and Pokestops can be found in town centers or popular haunts.