This Easter holidays we were lucky enough to spend a day at the glorious Pensthorpe Nature Reserve, just outside Fakenham.
If you haven’t been yet, I suggest you hot foot it there as soon as possible – it’s definitely a jewel in Norfolk’s crown. A beautiful reserve with something for all ages. It’s really well set-up for families with shorter pram friendly walks, stamp trails, den building and, of course, one of then most amazing outdoor play areas I’ve ever seen – WildRootz.
There were four children on our trip and from the moment they stepped out into the reserve they were running and exploring. From crazy looking birds, to nesting geese, to swirling a stick in the water – you quickly realise that being outside, exploring nature simply never gets boring.
To quote my six-year-old son, when asked what what his favourite bit was: ” it is a great big place to look at and climb and explore and I want to live there.”
It’s a perfect chance to get outside as a family, enjoy an adventure and rediscover , or even discover for the first time, a love of the outdoors.
This Easter they had an Easter trail with clues hidden in balloons around the walks. A great way to share some knowledge and educate the children about the wildlife, with the added incentive of a chocolate egg at the end! The children really got into it and it took us through the beautiful Milenium Garden with its hidden sculptures and into the section where you can also do some den building.
You can take a walk around many of the trails and catch a glimpse of some amazing bird life, including flashes of pink from the flamingoes! We saw the huge, elegant cranes, watches cute little red squirrels and spent at least two hours building a dam in the tiny stream which runs around WildRootz.
The socks and shoes came off, sticks were found and sand was squished and mixed until we were kindly asked to leave as they were locking up! Wildrootz is wonderful, carved wooden animals punctuate amazing slides, sandpits, musical play and zip wires. There’s also loads of seating for picnics and a little hut selling hot drinks, and ice creams. There are loos nearby too, a must for any family day out!
We also spent some time in the indoor area, Hootz House, a lovely addition which is in keeping with the rest of the place. Wooden structures, great slides and a welcome chance to warm up for parents too!
There is something for everyone and the staff even hold talks in the viewing station just beyond the gift shop where you can hear about the valuable conservation work they do and learn more about the many species of bird they have.
It’s one of my favourite days out in Norfolk and if you’re looking for an outdoor adventure then look no further – Pensthorpe is definitively the place to go.