With the recent spell of decent weather, we are excited for all the fabulous family things to do in the coming weeks and months – especially ones that happen to be outdoors. In this month’s round up, we have two walks with a difference – at Mottram Hall and Tatton Park along with outdoor theatre and family-friendly festivals.
Calling rail enthusiasts big and small! Celebrate steam’s golden age with a family trip on the Flying Scotsman this summer. Following the unfortunate coronavirus related cancellations at Easter, the East Lancashire Railway is thrilled to be welcoming the return of this legend which your little ones are sure to enjoy.
Round up the family for a woodland walk with a difference! In the stunning surroundings of Mottram Hall, a whole host of species await discovery – from dinosaurs and jungle animals to mythical creatures and even superheroes. One thing’s for sure, Totally Roarsome is bound to excite.
The prospect of a festival is thrilling and 5 on the Farm in Barnsley, Yorkshire manages to combine all of the best kids activities into one three-day extravaganza with the aim of celebrating rural life. With plenty of opportunities to meet their favourite Milkshake! TV presenters, much-loved cartoon characters Peppa Pig and Paw Patrol, and access to furry friends in Cannon Hall Farm there’s something for everyone.
After months indoors, the very mention of outdoor theatre has us brimming with excitement! Which is why Waterside Arts and Heartbreak Productions’ new adaptation of the children’s favourite Mr. Stink is simply unmissable. Arrive early to explore Sale’s ‘secret’ Walkden Gardens before settling down with a picnic.
There are a host of online activities for families to enjoy too – ranging from a raucous protest style sing-song with songwriter Matt Hill (you can expect tunes from all the greats – including Bob Marley, Joni Mitchell and Bob Dylan) to crafts with Early Years Atelier at The Whitworth. Do bedtime a little differently! Get cosy and snuggle up for a live-streamed, multi-sensory story session via the People’s History Museum’s Facebook page. It’s a perfect way for your tots to prepare for a long snooze (fingers crossed, eh!) at the end of the day.
If outdoor theatre is your thing, then be sure to check out our guide to open air theatre in Manchester and the North which includes some family-friendly offerings.
Events are still changing at pace, but rest assured that we continue to update these pages frequently – so do check back for new family-friendly activities. In the meantime, be sure to check out our full guide to the best online events from organisations in Manchester and the North too.
Scroll down to get stuck in.
Here are our picks
Flying Scotsman at East Lancashire Railway, 29 August–5 September 2021, from £12.4 - Book now
Celebrate steam’s golden age with a family trip on the Flying Scotsman this summer! A trip on the world’s most iconic locomotive makes for an incredible day out and is sure to excite rail enthusiasts big and small.
There’s nowhere quite like Tatton Park on a warm sunny day and Percy the Park Keeper – The Secret Path in the Gardens is the perfect way to explore the stunning ‘secret gardens’ and all it has to offer with your little ones.
Head over to Mottram Hall where, in the depths of stunning Cheshire woodland, you’ll discover an immersive walking trail. Totally Roarsome promises to excite your little ones with huge figures of animals ranging from the Jurassic to the mythical.
This three-day extravaganza manages to combine all of the best kids activities into one festival featuring famous faces from the tellybox, access to furry farm animals, and opportunities to meet much-loved cartoon characters from Peppa Pig and Paw Patrol.
Doodle Den: Playful Protests at People's History Museum at People’s History Museum in Manchester, City Centre and online, Until 31 December 2021, free entry
Hunker down with blankets, cushions and whatever takes your fancy to create a Doodle Den and use the People’s History Museum’s online resources to creatively explore important topics including climate change, LGBT+ Pride and migrant rights.
Don’t miss the children’s classic Zog live at The Lowry! This new adaptation is jam-packed with lively songs from Joe Stilgie and is sure to have your little ones up in their seats, singing along while cheering the loveable Zog on.
Science Learning at Home with Jodrell Bank is a perfect way to keep children (and their adults) busy while learning from home.
Round the family up and head outside for this wonderful story walk adventure from Stand and Be Counted Theatre. Perfect for livening up a lockdown walk.
TOP SECRET: the Science and Industry Museum digs into the history of British national security over the last 100 years.
Enjoy this hilarious Shakespearean comedy in the wonderful open-air surroundings of Grosvenor Park.
An epic and extraordinary travelling artwork will set off from the Turkish – Syrian border for Manchester this April. Adventurous and inventive, this is the first event to be announced for MIF21.
Celebrate the brilliance of 20th century design, fashion, vehicles and entertainment at this award-winning festival set around Morecambe’s famous art deco Midland Hotel.
Using state of the art LED screen technology, Horizons will fill the M&S Bank Arena with images of far-away galaxies, alien worlds, supermassive black holes and a time before the Big Bang.
Horizons is a celebration of our civilisation, of our music, art, philosophy and science; an optimistic vision of our future if we continue to explore Nature with humility and to value ourselves and our fellow human beings.
An incredible wonderland of outdoor arts, masquerade and pint carrying competitions in Penrith.
Festival of light and art Light Up Lancaster returns to the city with installations, projections, performance and fireworks illuminating the city’s historic buildings, charming streets and hidden squares.
It’s the March edition of the Food and Drink Guide to Manchester and the North and things are slowly starting to feel more promising. Spring is here, the weather is mostly warming up and in just a few weeks we’ll be allowed to eat and drink outside at venues with outside space.