South Yorkshire Aircraft Museum

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One slightly colder day we visited the south yorkshire aircraft museum in doncaster. This place is not far from either doncaster dome or the lakeside shopping village so is good for doing a couple of things in one day.

Entry for under 5’s is free an for adults is £6.50. We used a voucher from our purple book so only paid for one adult. The museum itself doesn’t have a proper cafe but you can buy drinks and snacks. There is a room with table and chairs where you can sit down and eat them. We took a picnic with us as there are a few picnic benches to sit on outside.

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The first thing we did was walk into the biggest hall. In here is lots of planes and helicopters some of which you can sit in. Beware it can get quite cold in this hall even when sunny. Also in here is a flight simulator which you can have a go on but is aimed at older children and adults. Towards the back is a children’s helicopter ride which is 20p for a ride.

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Outside a few big planes you can look at but you can’t access these much to my 4 year old’s disappointment.

Next to the big hall is another building. In here there are a lot of displays of information. One room has a model railway but that wasn’t working when we went, there are some books and model trains on display.

Towards the back of the building is a display of a shop and the blitz. Next to here is a small room with dressing up clothes and a couple of toys. My 4 year old loved this room and spent ages trying different hats and playing with the building blocks.

Another building houses a few more planes, one has some steep steps and a largish cockpit to sit in which my son enjoyed pretending to fly to the shop in.

Overall this place is good for a few hours especially if the weather isn’t great. My 4 year old is plane mad so he enjoyed it. It is also not far from Doncaster airport where you can watch the planes taking off and landing which is my sons idea of heaven.

Rufford Abbey

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Today with the weather been nice we decided to visit the fairy trail at rufford abbey as we wanted to be outside. We had heard problems about the car park getting full and being closed off. Someone mentioned another car park at the mill end so we parked here. It cost £3.50 for all day (but is rising to £4 soon) and was plenty of spaces at 11am. However the downside was it was a 15 minute walk to the main part but it did save us the hassle of fighting for a car parking spot.

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As we arrived at the visitor centre for a trail sheet it was really busy. A trail sheet is £2 each and they get a reward for completing it (packet of milky way stars at the end).

The trail took us ages but that is mainly because our 1 year old kept getting distracted easily. Along the way were cute little fairy houses to look at. At the end of the trail you get to put a ribbon on the wishing tree.

Our 1 year old didn’t have a clue what we were doing but the 4 year old loved it. The trail was easy enough with a pram but not sure how muddy it would have been if it had rained lately.  We took the scuttle bug and the scooter which made it slightly easier to get around with less moaning.

After we had completed the trail and eaten the reward we headed through the gardens. Here there were lots of little statues and a maze. There was also a crazy golf but we felt this was a little expensive at £5 each especially for the attention span of a 1 and 4 year old. received_263986261177786

As you come out of the gardens you come to the play area which is huge. Being half term on a sunny day it was packed my 4 year old especially loved this play area. There are lots of slides but a word of warning they are very fast! There was also a zip wire and sand area.

I can’t comment on the cafes as we took a picnic there are plenty of area to eat a picnic. There is also a big lawn type area where you could also kick a ball around.

 

On the way back to the car park we walked round the lake and fed the ducks however because there were so many people feeding the ducks they weren’t hungry. Arriving back at the car we were all very tired but did enjoy it with my 4 year old asking if he can do another trail again.

 

Sherwood forest miniature railway

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Our family discovered this little gem the other weekend. If you are passing or just want a run out this place is ideal for an afternoon.

We went on a Sunday and combined it with a car boot first which is right next to the railway. Two minutes after leaving the carboot you come across the car park. This place is ideal for taking a picnic but the little hut sells packaged sandwiches from a £1. It also sells sweets, ice creams and drinks.

Rides on the miniature railway were £1.50 each with under 2’s free. The train ride is about 5 minutes to one end and then 5 minutes back. The train driver was really friendly with my little boy and let him pull the train whistle and explained how the train worked. On the train journey were lots of gnomes dotted about to spot. With it being a miniature railway you cant take prams on but it wasn’t a problem for us to leave them on the platform.

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After the train ride we let our little boy have a go on the miniature boats which were a £1 a go. Then we explored the play areas. There were a couple of big slides, then in a field are a load of ride on’s, swings and playhouses. Near the entrance was some climbing frames for older kids and also a zip wire which this big kid here particularly enjoyed!

If you want to extend your day nearby are rufford abbey and sherwood forest itself.

Thomas land and Drayton Manor

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My 3 year year old is a massive Thomas fan so we went to Thomas land and Drayton manor theme park recently using tesco clubcard vouchers. It was simple to do we ordered via the tesco clubcard site then exchanged the code for tickets when we arrived. Then we just paid £7 for my 3 year old and my 11 month old was free.

We went on a term time Friday as this was quieter although there was still a big queue to get in. There were lots of school trips but they were more interested in the bigger rides. If you are planning to take a picnic with you I would take it in with you as it’s a 5/10 minute walk back to the car depending on where you are parked. I can’t comment on the prices of the food and drink as we took our own.

First thing we did was go on a couple of the rides in Thomas land where we got wet before they got busy. Then as it started to get busier we jumped on Percy the train to the other side of the park. Here there was a model railway a couple of small animals, a small playground and a couple of picnic benches in the shade which was where we ate our picnic. Then we slowly made our way back to the other end via the big outdoor play area and zoo.

As we got back towards the other side the kids played in the indoor play area as it was so hot outside. In here was a baby/toddler area and an area for older children. However the play area is run in session to stop it getting full. Prams also have to be left outside.

By this point a lot of the school trips had to go home around 2/3pm so this was when we went on the rides as the queues were now small. My 3 year old got on loads without having to wait to long. A word of warning though if its hot there isn’t a lot of shade.  The ride operators are rightly quite strict on the height restrictions. My son is 99cm and was refused on a 1m ride. However all the staff were friendly that we met.

We finished off with a £1 worth of 2p’s as there is an amusement arcade there before leaving at about 5.30pm. It’s well worth a full day out we all enjoyed it.

Sandtoft trolleybus musuem

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The typical British weather ruined our original Easter plans so we had to re think of somewhere to go that I could push the pushchair around without getting stuck in a muddy field.

So we decided to visit the trolleybus museum just to get the 3 year old out of the house for a bit. I think it cost around £20 non gift aided for 2 adults, 1 senior and under 5s were free. The museum is only open on certain days though as it’s run by volunteers.

We were given old pennies for the first trolley bus ride which i gave the 3 year old to give to the conductor. I had to leave the pushchair and carry the 8 month old on the trolley buses but I expected that anyway. Once you have paid your entrance you can have as many trolley bus rides as you would like much to the 3 year old’s delight.

Also onsite was a small playground with a slide and swings in, an old prefab and some old buses on display. In the cinema room (which was lovely and warm) was a table with some colouring and Lego bricks. There was also a games room which had colouring, table football, rocking horse, giant games, a ride and some toy cars in.

While there we had a picnic, now this is where I think could really be improved. It was cold and wet so I asked where inside we could eat our sandwiches. We were directed to a small house that contained 4 chairs and 2 old bus children rides. It wasn’t heated and was cold and could have done with a heater, table and a bin for rubbish nearby.

Inside the cafe was a pretend bus front that the children could pretend they could drive. The cafe itself was small but reasonably priced. Next to the cafe was a small shop.

Overall the staff were really friendly and good with the 3 year old. This place is good for an afternoon visit especially on a dull day.

 

 

Elsecar park

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On way to visiting family we needed somewhere for the 3 year old to burn some energy off for a couple of hours. So we decided to visit Elsecar park just across the road form the heritage centre. Best place to park is the car park just outside the heritage centre then cross the road into the park.

I’m glad we took the little mans balance bike as there is a nice bike/scooter pretend road track laid out complete with pretend shop, post office and petrol pump. The 3 year old loved this bit. After that we called in the cafe for a cuppa and toasted teacakes. The prices are fair but be aware they take cash only. They also sell duck food to feed the ducks at 30p a bag.

Just opposite the cafe is a small playground. In here is a few swings, toddler play frame and a climbing frame for the older ones. Outside the park bit is a roundabout, basket swing, wooden play bit, some spinny things, table tennis table and a volleyball pit. There is also a football pitch area. I do feel like the play area could maybe do with a bit more for the kids older than a toddler like a bigger slide for example.

Next to the cafe was a crazy golf course I don’t think the prices were too bad but it was too wet too have a go. There is also a pitch and putt course but I’m not sure on the prices.

Next time on sunny day I would like to combine it with the heritage centre to make more of a day with it.

Holiday at tattershall lakes country park

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We recently stayed at tattershall lakes on a sun deal in a caravan. Unfortunately it was the week after the big snow storm so everywhere was full of puddles and VERY muddy. However we did’t let this deter us and we went armed with puddle suits and wellies.

Our first impression was brilliant caravan with central heating and en suite but in the wrong location safe to say it was in the middle of it’s own lake complete with ducks. This made it awkward with the pushchair.

The site itself is massive and has lakes for fishing and watersports. This made the hubby happy as he likes his fishing. The outdoor play area is good so my 3 year old said. Outside for warmer weather there is also crazy golf, splash pad and mini beach but these were all closed when we went because of the weather.

There is a small shop for essentials but as you would expect it’s a bit on the dearer side. Inside is a small arcade not sure if it was because they were setting up but we were disappointed there were no 2p pushers my 3 year olds favourite. As you would expect a lot were ticket machines.

We went to the swimming pool one day the pool itself is ok but small. The changing room was lovely and spacious but there wasn’t enough changing rooms. Lockers are £1 returnable and there are plenty. The only downside to the pool is you go in the steps and then straight into the pool which means you can’t touch the floor.

As it was off season we visited the entertainment which we didn’t enjoy it was just too loud my 3 year old hated it as it was so loud. I liked the decor of the bar though with the spitfire and landrover.

We spent a lot of the time walking around the site exploring and on sunday there was a jet ski race which we watched. The staff on the site were really nice and tried their hardest to help. Be aware though it is next to the airbase with planes flying 8am-dark it didn’t bother us as we loved watching them.

It is also a good base to explore. Five minutes away is tattershall farm park and tattershall castle. We also visited skegness for the day and the ark wildlife park.

We would return as it’s a good base and somewhere the hubby can go fishing. Hopefully next time it’s better weather!