The staycation

The Staycation

Whether you’re going on holiday or not this summer you’ll still be spending loads of time at home. So why not make your home a holiday destination and create the perfect staycation with these inexpensive ideas for all the family to enjoy.


There’s something for everyone from gardening and crafting to picnics in the park and visits to museums- the kids won’t even know they’re learning! See how many you can do before the school holidays are over and you won’t hear, “Mum’ I’m bored!” once!

1. Make a teepee from some fabric and a few bamboo sticks. Nothing keeps kids entertained like a place to camp out in all day long. If it’s raining you can bring it inside.

2. Get gardening - Plant late summer flowers and vegetable seeds with your green-fingered kids. They can watch them grow all summer long. Calendulas, Candytuft, Larkspur and Nasturtiums will all flower later in the season if planted out now and don’t forget Dahlia bulbs for a spectacular floral display late summer/ early autumn. June is also a great time to plant up French beans, beetroot, carrots, lettuce and spinach especially if you want your little ones to eat more greens. They’re more likely to do so if they can say, “I grew this”.

3. Get crafting - Lay a roll of old wallpaper wrong side up in the garden and let the kids paint their feet and walk along it, or draw around each other and fill in the face, hands and clothes details. Grab an old t-shirt and some fabric paints and let the kids design their own look. They can sew on buttons, ribbons, beads- anything goes!

4. Visit a petting farm. Kids love nothing more than getting up close to farmyard animals especially if they can feed them.

5. Check local listings for free summer events. There are always French markets, craft fairs and free festivals on throughout the hottest months of the year.

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6. For a great family day out head to a National Park; there are many national parks around the country that you can visit for free, just search online to find places in your local area. Pack up a picnic and make a day of it with the kids. You could even make a nature treasure hunt with pictures of the plants and trees to spot in the grounds.  Go to your local park and make a day of it. Stick your helmets on and go for a bike ride or take a kite for some flying fun.

7. Check if there are any sporting events in your local area. There are many marathons, rowing races, football matches and triathlon races put on every year in local parks. Why not choose a team and cheer them on.

8. Kids are going to be getting pretty mucky while out and about so stock up on stain removers. Any stubborn, muddy, grass stains can be removed with a pre- stain soak in Ariel Excel Gel for just 10-15 minutes before you pop it in the washing machine.

9. Visit a museum. Plenty of museums are free to visit and during summer holidays many put on extra activities, so they are great for family days out. Check their websites as you may have to arrive early or book free places. At Easter I took my daughters to the National Portrait Gallery where they did t-shirt painting in the style of one of the exhibitions, it was 1 ½ hours long and completely free! The choice of galleries and museums is amazing and again, search online to find out those closest to you.

10. On a rainy day - Most cinemas have cheaper early screenings of pre-released films on Saturdays and Sundays and also during the school holidays. Plus, don’t forget about your local library. Kids love to look for books that they can take home. Why not check out some arts and crafts books for inspiration on things to make.

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