30 great things to do outdoors this Easter in Norfolk
PUBLISHED: 17:55 28 March 2018 | UPDATED: 17:55 28 March 2018
Easter treasure hunts, Norfolk Spring Fling, Alice in Wonderland, outdoor theatre, fireworks and adventures in the countryside. Simon Parkin highlights great ways to keep the kids entertained outdoors over the Easter holidays.
Blickling Hall, March 24-April 15, 11am–8pm, £8.25, £3 children per trail, 01263 738030, nationaltrust.org.uk/blickling-estate/whats-on
Easter adventures around the garden at Blickling. Explore to find out about the plants and animals of springtime. Don’t forget to claim your shortbread treat at the end of the trail. Throughout the holidays discover more adventures by finding the secret tunnels, squishy trees and sundial. There will be plenty of fun from a family game of croquet by the lake, to planting seeds in the walled kitchen garden.
Easter Fun Fair
Chapelfield Gardens, Norwich, March 28-April 2/Market Place, Great Yarmouth, April 5-8
Norwich has long hosted an Easter fair and once again this year there is the chance to swing, slide and be whizzed around on the waltzer as the Showman’s Guild take over Chapelfield Gardens. Plenty of thrills, plus Easter egg prizes. Great Yarmouth’s annual Easter fair returns for four days with rides and stalls on the Market Place, Fullers Hill and on Brewery Plain.
Dinosaur Adventure, Lenwade, March 29-April 8, 9.30am-4.30pm, £13.25-£12.30, 01603 876325, roarrdinosauradventure.co.uk
Egg-cellent Easter Dinosaur Trail that has been transformed into the magical wonderland, where Dippy holds a Tea Party and you can find magic and treasures hidden throughout the woods. Play Croquet in the Queen of Hearts Garden and meet the friends of the White Rabbit in the Secret Animal Garden. Try and beat the clock with the Easter Egg Hunt and help Dippy and friends solve the mystery of the missing Easter Eggs in the live show (weekends only).
Pensthorpe Nature Park, near Fakenham, March 29-April 15, 10am-5pm, normal admission price, 01328 851465, pensthorpe.com
Easter trail to follow around the reserve to discover a Spring-themed word, as well as craft making activities. Golden Egg hunt for the chance to win prizes in the lucky dip prize draw. The golden egg will be hidden in a different top-secret location every day.
Fairhaven Easter Fun
Fairhaven Woodland and Water Garden, South Walsham, March 29-April 15, 10am-5pm, garden entry £6.85 (£6.60 cons), £3.95 children, under-5s free, 01603 270449 fairhavengarden.co.uk
Fairhaven has a busy programme of events over the Easter holidays. There’s a daily Scavenger Hunt and the annual Easter Egg Hunt on March 30 (11am-4pm, £2.50 per child with a chocolate egg). Dawn Chorus boat trip (April 7, £12.50, £7.95 children), round Fairhaven’s private broad. Forest Night Adventure (April 14, 8pm-10pm, £9, £6 children) includes stargazing, bat detecting, unlocking the secret of rub light, encountering nocturnal wildlife and witnessing strange night phenomena. Pre-book special events.
Bugs & Beasties/Goes Wild
Gressenhall Farm and Workhouse, March 29-April 15, 10am-5pm, £12.40 (£11.75 cons), £10.50 under-18s, under-4s free, £43.65 family, 01362 869263, museums.norfolk.gov.uk/gressenhall
Explore a world full of tiny creatures at Gresshall this Easter holidays. Hunt for creepy crawlies under logs and stone, see what insects you can spot flying in the air. Get creative and make your own beastie. Meanwhile Gressenhall Goes Wild on Bank Holiday Monday (10am-5pm, £15, £12.75 children, £52.80 family) includes family woodland exploration, messy fun and natural crafts and meet local nature detective Stuart Burgess and see what tadpoles, backswimmers and other pond life are up to this springtime.
Wild Things at Easter
RSPB Titchwell Marsh, March 29-April 15, 10am-4pm, 01485 210779, www.rspb.org.uk
What better time to see what’s coming booming, croaking, hopping, wriggling out of hibernation. Take the seasonal wildlife challenge and test your skills and knowledge at activity stations across the reserve, each participant gets to take home a souvenir to help you get your green space ready for spring. Activity sheets £2 per child.
Easter Holiday Fun
Church Farm, Stow Bardolph, March 29-April 15, 10.30am-4pm, £7.90 (£7.50 cons), £7.50 children, £5.50 aged-2, under-2s free, £29 family, 01366 382162, churchfarmstowbardolph.co.uk
Lambing season is well underway at the ‘maternity ward’ at Church Farm. Have a go at bottle feeding the gorgeous orphan lambs and give them a cuddle (10.30am, 12.30pm, 2.30pm and 4pm). Hold a fluffy Easter chick (11.30am/1.30pm) or join feeding time for the pigs and the rest of the animals (3.30pm). Tractor rides (£1 per person).
Look Out Archery
Ickworth, Bury St Edmunds, March 30-April 8, 10.30am-4pm, £4 per 10 arrows, 01284 736140, nationaltrust.org.uk
Explore your inner Robin Hood, or is it Katniss Everdeen, with Lookout Archery. Test and develop your skills on the range for all ages. Full instruction will be given by qualified staff. Meanwhile Ickworth also has a free Spring Trail (March 23-April 11). Grab a trail map and embark on a journey of discovery. Find out about the natural world and learn more about the Women who helped shape the estate.
Holkham Hall, March 30-April 2, 10am-5pm, hall and garden entry £16, £8 children, £44 family, 01328 710227, holkham.co.uk
Fun at Holkham includes meeting the Easter bunny. Jump aboard the Easter Express for a free trailer ride. Meet storyteller Paul Jackson in his magical yurt. Get crafty and make your own rabbit hat, colourful egg and Easter bookmark. Easter games galore while budding clowns can practice their circus skills, or enjoy a special magic show with wacky entertainers Stevie Spud or Rollo. You’ll also have the chance to be a bunny or a chick for the day with the face painters. Riddles to solve and eggs to find in the new ‘Field to Fork’ farming experience.
Easter Treasure Hunt
Hoveton Hall Gardens, March 30-April 2, 10.30am-5pm, £7.50 (£6.50 cons), £4 children, under-4s free, 01603 784297, hovetonhall.co.uk
Easter Treasure Hunt awaits you in the gardens of Hoveton Hall. By following the clues, the treasure hunt will take you all on an exciting journey around the gardens ending at the entrance kiosk so they can collect their Easter prize. There is also an Easter Egg Hunt in the walled gardens especially for the little ones who are helped find eggs by their very own Easter Bunnies.
Easter Special River Trips
The Bridge, Wroxham, March 30-April 2, 11.30am/2pm, £9, £6 children, under-5s free, 01603 782207, broadstours.co.uk
Blow the cobwebs away with a boat trip to see spring arrive on the Broads. Children can take part in the nature quiz, Easter egg hunt and free to enter colour and drawing competition. Listen carefully to the live skipper’s commentary for any clues. All children will receive an Easter egg.
Giant Duck Hunt
WWT Welney Wetland Centre, March 30-April 15, 9.30am-5pm, event free, normal admission, wwt.org.uk
Giant yellow ducks are missing and Dusty Duck needs your help to find them at Welney Wetland Centre this Easter. Use all your special detective skills to track down these cheeky birds and be in with a chance of winning a yummy prize. Also pond dipping, use your explorer backpack to spot some of the first insects of spring. If the weather happens to turn cold or wet, arts and crafts in the pond room.
Strumpshaw Fen, March 30-April 8, 10am-5pm, £4.50, £2.50 children (one child per family free), 01603 715191, email firstname.lastname@example.org
Take part in our ever-popular Easter Trail around the beautiful Discovery Zone at RSPB Strumpshaw Fen in the heart of the Broads. Lots of fun, hands-on activities that will help you discover our spring wildlife. Small chocolate egg for each child taking part. Suitable for all the family. Drop-in event so just come along on the day. Charge £2.50 per trail sheet.
Framlingham Castle, March 30-April 2, 11am-5pm, £9.50 (£8.60 cons), £5.70 children, under-5s free, £24.70 family, 0870 333118, english-heritage.org.uk
Ever wondered what life was like in 14th Century England? Explore the bustling medieval encampment and meet the peasants, Knights and Ladies of the court, busy with their everyday activities. Ask a blacksmith how he made the weapons of war, watch as cooks brew, boil and roast medieval recipes and hear about the rigorous rules of the court. See the weaponry in action as swords are wielded and helmets battered in a medieval combat display. Learn about the history of timekeeping, from early water clocks to the new mechanical clock.
Easter Family Transport Trail
East Anglian Transport Museum, Carlton Colville, March 31-April 1, 12pm-4.30pm, £9 (£8 cons), £6 children, under-5s free, 01502 518459, eatransportmuseum.co.uk
The season starts at this museum dedicated to all things transportation with a celebration of Easter for all the family. There will be a free fun treasure hunt ending in prizes for the children. There will be egg decorating and face painting and extra prizes for children in Easter bonnets. All the usual trams, trolleybuses and trains will be running around our site too.
Easter at Cley
Cley Marshes, April 1, 10.30am-4.30pm, free, 01263 740008, norfolkwildlifetrust.org.uk
Celebrate Easter at Norfolk Wildlife Trust’s Cley Marshes visitors centre. Explore the reserve with the special Easter trail. Create your own nature inspired Easter bonnet in the education centre and learn all about spring wildlife with free crafts and activities.
Easter Egg Ramble
Wind Energy Museum-The Morse Collection, Repps With Bastwick, April 1, 11am-4pm, £5 children, adults free, windenergymuseum.wordpress.com
Mini egg ramble for the little ones within the grounds of this unusual and fascinating museum dedicated to the history of wind power. There is also a walk from the museum along the river bank to Thurne Mill where optional boat trip is available back to Repps Staithe. Kids collect clues along the walk and then receive an egg once back at the museum.
Easter Monday at Fakenham Races
Fakenham Racecourse, April 2, gates open 11am, £18-£8, fakenhamracecourse.co.uk
Easter favourite family day out on Easter Monday that is always a fun day for the whole family. As well as the racing there will be some entertainment and rides for children ( weather permitting) and with all kids aged 17 and under getting free entry.
West Runton, April 3, 2pm, and April 12, 11.30am, £3.50, norfolkwildlifetrust.org.uk
Join the team rummaging in rockpools in search of life on West Runton beach. With sturdy shoes and keen eyes, help carefully investigate the secrets of the seashore. If you don’t know a barnacle from a belemnite the experts will be on hand to identify your finds. Meet outside the beach café 15 minutes early to sign up. Also on April 12 learn more about fossils (12.30pm).
Wonderland at Pleasurewood Hills
Pleasurewood Hills, April 3-15, more information and booking at pleasurewoodhills.com
Fans of the Lewis Carroll’s Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland can book seats at the Hatter’s table for an interactive afternoon tea This Easter. The stage of Pleasurewood Hills’ Castle Theatre will be transformed in to a mini Wonderland for the tea parties. You will be able to hear about Alice’s time in Wonderland while they enjoy tea, cakes and other tea time treats. Pandemonium Productions, based in Beccles, are stage-managing the tea parties and will be providing the actors who will be stepping in to the shoes of the Hatter and Alice. You may be set a riddle or two to solve and will also get to meet the park’s very own Woody Bear.
Weeting Heath, April 4, 10.30am-12.30pm, £4 children, pre-book 01842 827615, norfolkwildlifetrust.org.uk
Discover the huge variety of birds calling Weeting home as you head onto the reserve an into the bird hides. You will be able to use binoculars up close. You will learn how to simply identify different types and explore bird song, with a chance to make your own bid feeder to take home. Accompanying adults free.
Family Survival School
Sheringham Park, April 4, 10.30am-3.30pm, £22 children, £18 adults, pre-book 0844 2491895, nationaltrust.org.uk
Has your family got what it takes to survive in the wild? Hone your survival skills on this bite-size bushcraft adventure. Build a shelter, light a fire and learn how to navigate with a map and compass. Make your own weatherproof shelter and get a fire started without using matches. Be prepared for a full day out in the Norfolk backwoods. Ages 9+
Wild in the Woods
Oxburgh Hall, Oxborough, near Swaffham, April 4 and 11, 11.30am-1.30pm, included in normal admission, pre-book 01366 328926, nationaltrust.org.uk
Can you survive a day in the woodland? You may be whittling sticks, making charcoal, collecting firewood, toasting marshmallows over an open fire, drinking hot chocolate, den building, minibeast hunting to name but a few. Wear clothes you don’t mind getting muddy in plus sturdy boots or wellies. There will be a walk of about 20 minutes to the event area.
Pleasure Beach Fireworks
Pleasure Beach, Great Yarmouth, April 4, 8pm, free entry, pleasure-beach.co.uk
Yarmouth Pleasure Beach iis in full swing during the Easter Holidays and you can enjoy a free fireworks display when the park closes at 8pm on April 4. The rides range from family fairground fun to white-knuckle stuff. Some are the very latest in up-to-the-minute thrills, others have been loved down the generations. Its crowning glory is the wooden rollercoaster – complete with a brake-man who rides every train.
An Easter Adventure!
Bungay Castle, April 7, 11am, 12pm and 1.30pm, £5, £2.50 children, 01986 897130, fishertheatre.org
Upshoot Theatre Company host magical live outdoor theatre and Easter egg hunt in the grounds of Bungay Castle transformed into a “colourful, eye-popping Easterland” meeting characters from stories on the way. Participants will find clues to where various chocolate eggs are hidden around the castle. After the hunt, the adventure will conclude with Easter Stories from around the world.
Spring Adventure Festival/ Epic Easter Egg Adventure
Whitlingham Adventure, Trowse, Norwich, April 8, 10am-4pm, 01603 632307, whitlinghamadventure.org.uk
Mini adventures activities and workshops on and off the water at Whitlingham Adventure (£12.50 per person, book online) suitable for ages 5+. Meanwhile Whitlingham Country Park also hosts an Easter trail with a mini egg prize from 11am-3pm. Then make an Easter gift box to take your prize home (£2 per participant). Booking essential on 01603 617332.
Norfolk Spring Fling
Norfolk Showground, April 10, 9.30am-3.30pm, £9.50, springfling.rnaa.org.uk
This celebration of farming and the countryside is always a great family day out for all the family over the Easter holidays. Meet friendly Scarecrow Mr Mawkins on his farm and see the friendly animals, pigs, cows, lambs, goats and many more. Hands-on activities from crafting the natural landscape to trying your hand on a lambing simulator. Tractor rides all day and climb into a giant combine harvester to see what it would be like to drive one of these giant machines. New this year is the Emergency services zone. Meet your local police, learn CPR with the Air Ambulance and dress up as a member of the RNLI. Ticket price includes hog roast lunch!
Signs of Spring/Dyke Dipping
NWT Hickling Broad, April 11, £3.50, pre-boook 01603 625540, norfolkwildlifetrust.org.uk
Search for the signs of spring at Hickling Broad (10.30am-12pm). Flowers will be blooming, bitterns may be booming and the first butterflies may have emerged. Who and what will we see? Then learn about the wonderful wildlife that can be found in the dykes in the afternoon (1.30pm-3pm). The experts will be on hand to help you tell your boatman from your beetle larvae.