Posted: July 23rd 2019
by Jo Birch, Marketing Assistant
Families, grab your sunhats and sun cream, it’s a scorcher! What a fantastic start to the summer holidays, and where better to while away the long summer days with your family than in Holkham park. We’ve got lots of great activities for children and parents alike, down by the lake, through the park and even in the treetops!
You may have heard about our newest parkland adventure, which we are delighted to say is now open! Take to the trees with our new ropes course, run by the team from Norfolk Adventure. The course is located near to the visitor cark park, so is easily your first stop during your visit to Holkham! Anyone over 1m tall and under 20.5 stone is welcome on the course which takes around an hour to complete. Once you’ve got your harness on and completed an induction with the team, it is time to get your feet off the ground and navigate wobbly crossings, swinging bridges, see-saws and best of all, the zip wires which will get you safely back on the ground. Mums and dads – we encourage you to have a go too!
This summer we have ample ways for you to explore the rolling parkland; there are waymarked routes to walk, from the 2 ½ lake walk, the 4 mile park walk to the 6 mile farm walk. There is lots to see on your way round too; there’s the idyllic Temple tucked away in the woods, the Obelisk standing tall directly in line with the Monument in the distance, the Ice House on your way to the Walled Garden, the Great Barn and much more! Don’t forget to pick up a Nature Trail leaflet from the ticket office and complete our fun quiz!
If you don’t fancy walking, our Cycle Hire Centre is open all summer and has routes from 2 ¼ to 10 miles to follow, all within our picturesque deer park. They have mountain bikes, children’s bikes, child seats, trailers, tag bikes and even a trailer for your dog! Where will you go?
If walking or cycling isn’t your thing, then why not see the park from the comfort (we use this term loosely – you’re in for a bumpy ride) our tractor trailer! Whilst navigating parkland, farmland, tracks and trails, your tour guide will tell you all about our huge farming operation, past and present on the estate. It is a great way to learn all about where your food comes from before visiting our fun, interactive exhibition near the café – Field to Fork! (There’s half price entry to Field to Fork when booked with this tractor trailer tour too!) Learn all about conservation, see the different crops we grow in the park, learn about the livestock we keep and how all these change through the seasons.
Once you’ve scoped out all corners of the park, it’s time to discover Holkham’s watery world with our boat hire! Our mile-long lake, with islands to contend with is a great way to spend an afternoon, either on a rowing boat, kayak or canoe. The rowing boats seat up to 5 people (your dog too!) and is a gentle way of exploring the lake. The canoes offer more of an adventure and seat 2 or 3 people. Or, if you’re ready for a splash about then the kayak is the boat for you, seating 1 or 2 people, the trick is to start gently!
Whilst you’re down at the lake, why not try your hand at Pond Dipping! Hands-on, family-friendly fun exploring the wildlife in and around the lake! With our fishing nets we will scope out what lies beneath the surface of the lake and our expert team will be on hand to help you identify your catch!
And just in case you have any energy left at all, there is our children’s Woodland Adventure Play Area! It is free to use and great fun with its treehouse in the sky, high-level walkways, rope ladders, zip wire, steppingstone bridge, crawling tunnels and amazing split level tower! There’s a toddler area too with a sandpit, swing set and play area.
Throughout the summer, we have an exciting and eclectic array of theatrical performances live in the walled garden. A special treat for the whole family; bring a picnic, a blanket or your camping chairs and sit back, relax and prepare to be wowed by this year’s fantastic line-up! First up on 31st July is Romeo and Juliet – a super glam adaptation of Shakespeare’s star-crossed lovers performed half in modern English and half Shakespearean verse. On 7th August, Mowgli, Baloo and the fearsome Shere Khan head to the walled garden to bring you The Jungle Book, featuring puppets, colourful characters, audience interaction and plenty of laughs! King Arthur takes to the stage on 14th August – can he, with Merlin and his knights by his side, pull the sword from the stone and unite Britain? Rounding off the summer in style are The Lord Chamberlain’s Men, performing one of Shakespeare’s best-loved comedies, A Midsummer Night’s Dream.
Towards the end of the summer, and as dusk falls, we’re offering families the chance to join us on a nighttime adventure looking for bats! On this bat walk, we will discover more about the many species of bats you can find flitting about in Holkham park. Bats make sounds much too high for the human ear, so we will be equipped with special bat detectors to help us locate and identify them.
Whatever you choose to do this summer along the north Norfolk coast, we hope you make memories to last a lifetime!
Click here to find out more about Cycle Hire (pre booking not available)
Click here to find out more about Boat Hire (pre booking not available)
Click here to find out more about Pond Dipping (pre booking not available)
Click here to find out more about the Woodland Adventure Play Area