21 summer things to do

1. Wendover Woods

wendover woods

Children are happy exploring in the undergrowth, hiding in trees and riding bikes at Wendover Woods! There is also a great adventurous children's play area set in the very middle of the forest with equipment that is suitable for children. The site is open through the schools summer holidays and it's free free to walk to the woods (parking charges apply).


2. Bekonscot Model Village & Railway


Bekonscot Model Village & Railway is the world’s oldest & original model village, opening for the first time in 1929. With over 80 years of history, a huge model railway, 1.5 acres of well kept gardens and finely detailed model buildings, Bekonscot is a great day out for everyone.
Stuck in a 1930s time warp, see England how it used to be and discover a wonderful little world tucked away from the hustle and bustle of everyday life. Open 7 days a week from 10am to 5.30pm, 13 February to 30 October (inclusive) Adults: £10 ~ Children: £6.


3. Get On Your Bike


With so much beautiful countryside and plenty of dedicated cycle ways, why not take the family for a bike ride? Whether it's a just a short, fun ride or you want to challenge yourself to a longer one, you'll find plenty of options here.

4. The Horse Trust

horse trust

Visit the horses, ponies and donkeys at The Horse Trust during the holidays and join in on Teddy’s Trails! For £1 you can entertain the kids whilst they meet some of the retired and rescue residents around the yard and answer the questions about them. At the end of the holidays a winner will be drawn to win a Flopsy horse soft toy. Open every Thursday to Sunday from 2-4pm. Entrance is £5 per car.


5. Thursdays In Aylesbury

thursdays in aylesbury

Every Thursday throughout the summer holidays there are loads of different events to keep the kids entertained with a choice of activities to make Thursdays in Aylesbury something to remember. 11am - 3pm each Thursday, either in Market Square or Kingsbury. Includes Ninja Warriors (11/08), Thrill Seeking (18/08), Driving Extravaganza (25/08) and Tree Tops (01/09). It's all free!


6. National Trust

national trust

The countryside and parkland looked after by the National Trust is perfect for these summer adventures and picnics when there’s a free day in the summer holidays. The beautiful gardens are at their colourful best in summer and have lots of paths and lawns for running, jumping and hiding plus peaceful shady spots to rest and soak up the atmosphere. Here's a few properties on the Mix96 doorstep; Ashridge Estate, Boarstall Duck Decoy, Cliveden, Hughenden Manor, Stowe, Waddesdon Manor, West Wycombe Park and Village. Entry is free for National Trust members, although there is sometimes a charge for some activities and events.

Find out more about what's going on at each venue here.

7. Tiggywinkles


Set in our beautiful gardens in the heart of the Chilterns countryside, Tiggywinkles Visitor Centre is home to some of our permanent animals who cannot be returned to the wild. So a blind hedgehog or 3-legged deer can live here in near-natural conditions, where they can be health-assessed regularly so they can live out the rest of their lives in safety. The centre also allows visitors to see the work we do first hand and learn about the history of the hospital, the type of animals we treat and some of the innovative techniques we employ. Open 10am -4pm, 7 days a week. Admission charges apply.


8. Roald Dahl Museum

roald dahl

This great little award-winning Museum is aimed at 6 to 12 year olds and their families and is situated in the village where Roald Dahl lived and wrote for 36 years. The Museum has three fun and fact-packed interactive galleries exploring the author’s life and stories. There's lots of activities during the school holidays, see the link below for full details. Admission Adults £6.60, Children 5 to 18 £4.40, Children under 5 Free, Concessions £4.40 (Concessions are for students, people aged 60 or over or for those with disabilities).


9. Splash and Play

splash and play

The Splash 'n' Play and The Beach at Parson's Close Recreation Ground is open from 10am-5:30pm, There's also a children’s’ play area, skate park and bandstand with live music. Thanks to @LLTCNews for the picture.

Find out more here.

10. Chiltern Open Air Museum

chiltern open air museum

Chiltern Open Air Museum is home to over 30 rescued historic buildings set in 45 acres of beautiful Chilterns countryside. Explore 2000 years of history including an Iron Age roundhouse, Blacksmith’s forge, tin chapel, toll house, working Victorian farm and even a 1940s Prefab! The Museum is home to heavy horses, sheep, cows, chickens and goats and has been used in the filming of many television programmes including Downton Abbey, Midsomer Murders, Call the Midwife and CBBC’s Horrible Histories. 

A fantastic events programme will keep the whole family entertained, and you can find out more about the summer programme and what's coming up later in the year here.

11. Tring Reservoir

tring reservoir

Tring Reservoir and canal walks provide accessible walking suitable for all the family and the chance to see wildlife, barges and great views of the Chilterns. You can also walk or cycle along the Grand Union Canal which links many towns and places of interest. There are a number of walking routes including a trail suitable for people with wheelchairs or pushchairs.

You can download maps here.

12. Bucks Goat Centre


The Bucks Goat Centre is a friendly open farm situated in Stoke Mandeville where you can pet and feed the clean and friendly farm animals in a child-friendly environment. There is animal handling daily and seasonal activities throughout the year including bottle-feeding lambs, ferret racing and alpaca walking. There’s a picnic area and play equipment for customer use. They have a wide selection of animals on the farm including playful piggy’s, cheeky chickens, very inquisitive alpacas, cuddly rabbits along with lots of friendly goats. Admission; Adult (16 years and over) - £4.50, Children (2-15 years) - £3.50, Children (under 2) - Free, Senior Citizens - £4.00, Disabled Adult - £4.00,Disabled Children - £3.00.


13. Bucks Railway Centre

bucks railway centre

Buckinghamshire Railway Centre occupies an extensive site in rolling Buckinghamshire countryside. There is so much to see and do! Exhibits range from large express passenger locomotives to the humble shunting engine together with a host of smaller items recreating the golden age of steam. During the school holidays there are Steam Train rides every Wednesday as well as Sundays! (Until - and including - Wednesday 31st August). Open from 10.30am - 5pm (last admission at 4pm). Admission charge apply.


14. Enjoy a picnic


Buckinghamshire has so many beautiful woodland areas to walk, explore and discover. A family day out in the great outdoors is hungry work so don’t forget to pack a picnic for a pit stop!

Here are some of our favourite places to pitch a picnic rug; Coombe Hill, College Lake Nature Reserve, Brill Windmill, Shipton Bridge Picnic Site Winslow, Cowleaze Wood, Whiteleaf Hill, Knightsbridge Stewkley, Cobblers Pits Aston Clinton, Cockshoots Wood Picnic Site Wendover, Long Spinney (Burcott Hall Farm) Wing.

15. Hellfire Caves

hellfire caves

Venture 300 feet under West Wycombe Hill into a series of hand carved tunnels, excavated by local labourers using only rudimentary hand tools and by candlelight alone, in the 1750’s. Experience first hand the path taken by members of the aristocracy to the once secret meeting place of the notorious Hell Fire Club. Wind your way through the narrow tunnels hewn from the chalk hillside until you descend into the magnificent banqueting hall. Carry on from the banqueting hall across the River Styx to reach the centre of the hill and the Inner Temple. Opening Hours - 11am to 5.30pm, 7 days a week throughout the summer until 31st October then weekends only until Easter. Entry prices; Adults £7.50 Children and Concessions & National Trust members £6 Family Ticket £20.


16. Green Dragon Eco Farm

green dragon

An environmentally friendly 44 acre rare breeds farm in Aylesbury Vale for all ages. Located in beautiful open countryside where there’s plenty of space for children to play and explore outdoors and indoors. There’s fresh homemade food in the Eco Centre restaurant that’s supplied by local producers and from our own walled garden, where we grow heritage fruit and vegetables.

Find out more about what you and your family can do at the farm here.

17. Natural History Museum

natural history museum

Part of the Natural History Museum since 1937, the remarkable collections were once the private passion of its founder, Lionel Walter Rothschild, second Baron Rothschild. Now more than 100,000 visitors a year enjoy a glimpse into the forgotten world of a Victorian collector, where they can see a huge variety of wild, weird and wonderful specimens from across the animal kingdom – from the extinct quagga to dressed fleas. The site at Tring also houses both the stunning Rothschild library and the Natural History Museum’s ornithological collection.

Free admission, although some activities may incur a charge. More here.

18. Go To The Park


Sometimes the kids just to need to run around and use up some energy, so what better than a trip to the park. We've got loads of great playgrounds in Bucks, there's probably one very near you. But what about checking out somewhere new?

Find a list of parks and playgrounds here and AVDC have plenty of Love Parks activities throughout the summer. See more here.

19. Mead Open Farm

mead open farm

There’s so much all-weather Summer holiday fun at Mead Open Farm! Get bouncy on the NEW gigantic Jumping Pillows - open throughout August (weather permitting), find your way through the Olympic Maize Maze to earn your very own Gold Medal! Combined with so much more outdoor adventure, animal activities – including the Lamb National - and indoor play, it’s 100% fun, whatever the weather! Mead Open Farm is just south of Leighton Buzzard.


20. Bucks County Museum

bucks county museum

In celebration of Roald Dahl’s 100th anniversary this special exhibition, Roald Dahl’s Buckinghamshire, explores the connections Roald Dahl has with the county and how it has been the inspiration for many of his fabulous stories. Using the County Museum’s vibrant collections and images from the Roald Dahl Museum and Story Centre archives, visitors of all ages can discover the people and places behind Roald Dahl’s stories in an enchanting woodland setting. Free entry. There's plenty more going on too, see the link below for details.


21. Go Ape

go ape

A mixture of coniferous and broadleaved trees, Wendover is an area of woodland on the north edge of the Chiltern Hills. Enjoy spectacular views and wild landscapes across Aylesbury Vale. Our Buckinghamshire adventure is the only Go Ape site in the UK to exclusively offer an ‘Extreme’ route. It includes a Scrambling Net and Climbing Wall to reach our most adventurous crossings. Are you up for the challenge?

There's more here.