5 Outdoor Adventures in West Berkshire
Spring is here and it's time to go and enjoy some outdoor adventures! We live in West Berkshire, within the glorious North Wessex Downs Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. Gorgeous countryside does not always translate to a successful day out with little ones however. With younger children it's good to have easy access and good parking. A café helps too, as do toilets! If there's a nature trail or hands-on activities for kids to engage with, so much the better. Here's my list of 5 places to go in West Berkshire for a successful outdoor adventure.
Basildon Park, Lower Basildon, Reading
Basildon Park is a great place to take the whole family for an outdoor adventure. It's a classic National Trust property with an 18th century house at the heart of nearly 400 acres of land. Popular all year round Basildon offers great walks including a Wild Play Trail. At Easter time not only is the traditional National Trust Easter hunt on, but it's also the best time to spot bluebells in the park.
Nature Discovery Centre, Thatcham
The Centre, which includes a café and interactive wildlife and science displays, overlooks a lake. The surrounding area is criss-crossed by paths and at the entrance are two fantastic playgrounds aimed at different age levels. Many of the paths are hardcore and suitable for little kids to zoom around on scooters and bikes. At Easter time there's a Nature Eggsperts Trail to follow, but throughout the year they offer great opportunities to learn about nature and bushcraft.
Bucklebury Farm and Deer Safari Park, Reading
A farm park is always a popular choice for a day out with young children. Bucklebury offers something a little different with its deer safari - a tractor safari through the deer's grounds. As well as meeting the animals, feeding the lambs and great play areas, Bucklebury has created a Wild Walk for all those budding outdoor adventurers.
Greenham Common, Newbury
A nature reserve on a disused airfield - sign us up! The hardcore paths are perfect for little legs to push along scooters or ride bikes. The more adventurous can cycle off-road and be challenged on the hillocks and along the large ponds. It's possible to see old hangars and, even better, the old control tower has been converted into a café and museum.
Donnington Castle, Newbury
So it doesn't have the café or toilets I promised, but it is only ten minutes drive from central Newbury, so I hope you'll agree that it's still suitable! Set on top of a hill above Newbury, these ruins of a 14th century castle provide a great place to inspire kids to play outdoors. Spend time clambering the low walls, playing hide and seek and inventing castle themed games. It's possible to walk along a local network of footpaths to extend your visit and create more adventures.