What’s On Locally this Easter? We know!
Slowly, slowly things are opening up. Here’s where to take the family locally over the holidays for a very welcome change of scene.
Can you see that? It’s the chocolatey hand of Easter, beckoning. Spring colours, burnished displays of marzipan, and children pinging off the walls with sugar. Each year somehow both a joy and a curse, Easter’s hurtling towards us with certain speed. We’ve only just got the kids into school, and they’re about to be turfed right back.
Enough to drive a woman mad? No, actually: not with our life-saving list of local things to do. Read on for how to engage those lovable rotters in Cambs and Suffolk this Easter break. (The best bit: this list includes genuine, real-life, in-person activities. This isn’t a drill. April 12 is a-coming.)
Trails and Egg Hunts
Anyone for Botanic Bingo? The Botanic Gardens in Cambridge, have spring bingo running from 26 Mar – 11 April. Grab a free bingo sheet on your way in and get searching for different springtime sights such as a brightly coloured Brimstone butterfly, cheery cherry blossoms and the elusive Purple Toothwort plant (wow – I have to know what that looks like!) and of course, a chocolaty prize for a full house!
English Heritage site Audley End will run its Easter Adventure Quest (29 Mar – 18 Apr, 10-5pm). Crack the clues searching for the dragon’s eggs and you might just get yourself a certificate and a chocolate reward.
National Trust properties are opening up too and both Anglesey Abbey and Wimpole Hall will have egg trails running over the Easter break. In Suffolk, you’re spoilt for choice with trails on at Flatford, Ickworth, and Lavenham. You might really dig (get it?) going to the famous Sutton Hoo too! Find out more here.
Kentwell House in Long Melford, 10 miles south of Bury St Edmunds has a slightly different egg trail on offer – they’re challenging families to find the huge wooden eggs hidden in the gardens (how huge exactly?) and to scramble the clues to crack the code they reveal. But is there chocolate inside? (we hope so!) On the Farm, the lambs will be in the paddocks, and you can meet Comfrey, the Suffolk Punch Cross, and Saffron and Sylvie, the miniature Shetland ponies.
Anyone for Tennis?
Ooh I say! With tennis one of the safer sports in Covid times, it’s a dead cert that courts will get super busy this Easter. Tennis clubs and centres will be opening up on March 29th so get ahead of the competition by booking in now. Two of our favourites are Hills Road Tennis Centre in Cambridge and Woodbridge Tennis Club in Suffolk– both friendly clubs with floodlit tennis courts for year-round tennis. Move over Serena, here I come!
Messing About in Boats
I can’t wait to go back on the water this Easter – praying for that good weather, so I can fully enjoy floating along with the sun on my face! Punts or kayaks can be hired on the Cam, either go it alone, or book a tour. Scudamores, based on Mill Lane in Cambridge, is taking online bookings now for slots on 29 Mar and onwards.
Milton Country Park, north of Cambridge, is also opening up its water-based activities, including organised wild swimming in the lake (might need a wet suit in April – brrr) or try paddle boarding and kayaking/canoeing for a warmer option. Book online here.
Stour Valley Adventure Centre , based in Sudbury Suffolk and spilling over into Essex, has over 1,000 miles of beautiful countryside to entice you with walks bike trails and paddle sports. Chose from different options, including the Wellness Paddle – sounds right up my street, and I can already imagine paddling on the tranquil waters (best leave the kids at home then!). Paddleboards, canoes, and kayaks are all available to hire from (you guessed it) – 29 Mar.
Sports & Activity Camps
Oh thank god! Activity camps are back in action and after a year of children at home, we can book them in guilt-free. Plenty open for business and jam-packed with fun things to do. Active Camps operate out of The Leys School, with its 50 acres of outdoor space and amazing sports facilities including a swimming pool and climbing wall, all in the centre of Cambridge. Daily activities run from 29 Mar – 9 Apr and include monster dress-up, mosaic making, obstacle courses and scavenger hunts. Caters to children from 3-14 who will be in age-appropriate groups, and will all be mighty tired when they get home (did someone say hooray?!).
For sporty kids in Suffolk there’s a brilliant range of options running out of Ipswich School’s super well-equipped sports centre this Easter. Evo Hockey is running specialist hockey camps for outfield players and goalkeepers from 29 -30 Mar. Netball camps will also run from 7- 9 Apr, 10 am – 1 pm for £35 per day for Years 5 to 9, all abilities welcome. Book online at www.netballdaft.co.uk. For all-rounders, multi-sports activities will run 6 – 9 Apr for £15 per child per session, 9 am-12noon for Years 2, 3 and 4; 1pm-4pm for Years 5, 6 and 7. A range of different sports will be available, all abilities welcome. Book online at www.ipswichschoolsportscentre.co.uk
We’ve all spent far too much time online this year already, but if we do have a rainy day, here are a few gems that might just capture the imagination.
The Cambridge Festival (a combo of the science festival and festival of ideas) takes place from 26 Mar – 5 Apr and brings together some of the best brains in the world to tackle questions big and small. There is a chance to put a question to Sir David Attenborough, as well as numerous sessions covering all sorts – the science of ice-cream, why worms are so smart, and alien existence. But seriously, let your children get a question in too. Heaps of inspiring and brain-boggling stuff– all online, and all for freeeeee! https://www.festival.cam.ac.uk/
Looking to up the intellectual levels? Check out the Cambridge Literary Festival – there are some amazing speakers and online events this Easter. Buy a Children’s festival online pass for £15 and get access to every event, with famous authors including Julia Donaldson, Alex T. Smith, Smriti Halls, Neal Layton, and many more (28-31 Mar).