Discover fun places for family adventures in Somerset

By Annie Cree

With its museums, zoos, farms, and some of the UK’s finest beaches and countryside, Somerset is perfect for a family day out filled with fun. Time to put your best foot forward to experience and explore some of the best things to do in this magnificent county.

Award-winning adventure

One of the best places to take the children to let off steam is the award-winning family-run Puxton Park near Weston-super-Mare. An adventure park set in 40 acres, children can get up close to farmyard animals, with fun feeding and petting time with rabbits and guinea pigs. There are live milking demonstrations, a falconry centre and a special owl encounter.

Bumper Boat family ride at Puxton Park Somerset

Captain your own bumper boat at Puxton Park

Those with a head for heights should try the new high ropes course. There’s also a miniature railway, a maze, giant fort and JCB dig and play. An indoor play area boasts fast and furious slides, and there’s a ball park for the under fives. A farm shop, butchery, deli and restaurant will satisfy foodies.  

Animal lovers

A trip to the zoo is great for animal lovers of all ages, with more than 100 species of animals set over 100 acres of Somerset countryside. Noah’s Ark Zoo Farm is home to the big zoo animals including African elephants, lions, giraffes, white rhinos, meerkats, zebras, spectacled bears and so much more. 

It’s a full day’s entertainment with interactive keeper talks every half hour and families will enjoy the indoor and outdoor adventure play zones that keep kids happy and active. For those less able, there are mobility scooters available for a small charge and free wheelchairs alongside changing places/accessible toilet facility. 

Street has an outdoor heated swimming pool, Greenbank, a much-loved facility in the centre of the village, and a good place to take shopped-out kids after a day in Clarks Village outlet. Wiveliscombe, near Taunton, also has a lido, as does Shepton Mallet. 

It’s a full day’s entertainment with interactive keeper talks every half hour and families will enjoy the indoor and outdoor adventure play zones that keep kids happy and active

Educational family fun

If you are looking for something thrilling and educational, head to the award-winning Mill on the Brue which offers 25 beautiful acres of Somerset countryside with over 40 activities, including two assault courses, archery, high ropes, tunnelling, rafting, tree climbing, and zip wires. There really is something for everyone to enjoy and you are guaranteed an unforgettable day out. 

A day on the beach

Head to Weston-super-Mare’s seafront, with its long sandy beaches, ideal for traditional donkey rides. Its refurbished award-winning Grand Pier has stunning views across the bay. Here you can take tea in an Edwardian-style tea room. There’s also a soft play cafe for little ones and the usual fun arcades. Weston also hosts its famous air show in June with breathtaking aerial displays, military bands and a fun fair. 

Sandy beach at Weston-Super-Mare in Somerset

Take advantage of Somerset’s sandy beaches

Aviation collection

Talking of which, it’s also home to the world’s largest helicopter museum, where you can book a real helicopter flight. Find out more about helicopters at Yeovil’s Royal Navy Fleet Air Arm Museum, Europe’s largest naval aviation collection, with everything from the earliest biplanes to the first British-built Concorde. Its air show in July is one of the largest in the country. 

Nature reserve

Finally, for a very different, though no less impressive, kind of flying head over to the RSPB’s Ham Wall Nature Reserve on the Somerset Levels. This newly-created wetland near Glastonbury has encouraged bitterns to nest here after an absence of over 40 years. The male’s distinctive ‘boom’ can be heard in spring as it nests in the reed beds.

In autumn, millions of noisy, fast-moving starlings gather to roost here and in the neighbouring Shapwick Heath Reserve. They create huge, magical ‘shapes’ in the sky as they fly together at dawn and dusk. A ‘hotline’ points you to their daily roosts. It’s a spectacle not to be missed.  

Whatever you decide to do, Somerset has the solution to suit your tastes. 

Find out more about Puxton Park

Read more about Somerset

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Image credits: ©Mill on the Brue; Noah’s Ark Zoo Farm; Puxton Park;; Video: Puxton Park/YouTube

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