Posted on 26/07/2017 by David
With the summer holidays here, it’s time to start planning an itinerary to entertain the family. Well, you’ll be pleased to hear we’ve done some of the legwork for you, so you can spend more time enjoying your holiday!
A great way to please everyone is to find a place which has a bit of everything: outside space to burn off all that holiday energy, interactive and engaging educational activities, and varied attractions that kids and adults of all ages will enjoy.
So, in the second instalment of our country parks blog series, we’re heading east, towards the green hills of the Clwydian Range in Denbighshire.
These three parks provide a great variety of activities, are all low cost (or FREE!) and are suitable for all ages.
Loggerheads Country Park - Mold
This is the perfect place to start off a family holiday. Located in the Clwydian Range, which is a designated Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, Loggerheads Country Park is the perfect introduction to the beautiful and historic landscape of Wales.
There is a visitor centre with a fantastic little tea room, a nice picnic area and network of waymarked paths, including two short circular trails. It’s free to enter - but take some change for the car park.
Enjoy a short stroll along the Leete Walk, which was once the route of the waterway that supplied lead mines in Mold in the 1800s. If you fancy a longer day of adventuring, why not make a history trail for the kids? There are several historic remains and ancient sites to find in the park. Ask at the visitor centre for info.
Here’s a couple of interesting facts and fascinating places to find nearby:
- The name ‘Loggerheads’ is thought to come from the dispute over estate boundaries between the lordships of Mold and Llanferres in the late 1700’s.
- You can seek out the final boundary marker - Carreg Carn March Arthur which is possibly a Bronze Age standing stone.
- See if the kids can find the hoof-print shape which is visible on the stone - local legend states that it was left here by King Arthur’s horse Llamrai, as they leapt from Moel Famau to escape the invading Saxons.
- Moel Famau is a great walk if you have older children, leading to an incredible viewpoint at the top of Jubilee Tower - which was built in 1810 to commemorate the golden jubilee of George III.
- If you are lucky enough to get a clear day, see if you can you spot Blackpool Tower, the Isle of Man and the mountains of Cumbria from the top of Moel Famau.
Greenfield Valley Heritage Park - Holywell
An ideal place to take the whole family for a day out, Greenfield Valley Heritage Park is somewhere everyone will find something to enjoy. The park has a diverse selection of activities and attractions, that will inspire visitors of any age to take an interest in history.
The museum, which depicts life for the workers of the local communities through the Tudor and Victorian era is interesting, engaging and evocative - but there is much more history to explore within the area surrounding the museum too.
There is a fantastic family-friendly walking route around the park, where you can explore mature woodland, passing by reservoirs, ancient monuments including the 12th century Basingwerk Abbey, and remnants of the area’s industrial heritage.
It’s quite incredible that within just a mile of the park you can see such a huge variety of historical artefacts. Just as an example - St Winifred’s well, which is a short walk away, is the only place in Britain with a continuous history of public pilgrimage for over 13 centuries. However, the fact that Queen Victoria’s undies were made in the old cotton factory nearby is probably more interesting for the kids!
If that isn’t enough to keep you occupied, there’s a maze, an adventure treehouse, a water play area and a Victorian Farm House (with animals to feed). There's much more besides, so go and see for yourself!
Greenacres Animal Park - Deeside
Though not a country park as such, Greenacres Animal Park is worth a mention if you are exploring North East Wales. It’s ideal for families with young children, or if you only have a few hours to spare but want to entertain the kids.
It’s a truly delightful little park, which gives you an opportunity to get up close to a lot of the animals. Why not let the kids loose with a camera, to try out a spot of wildlife photography?
This is a great way to get children to really take time to observe the animals, rather than dash from one enclosure to the next. It also keeps them occupied afterwards, as they can spend some time on a rainy afternoon editing their photos and creating a wall display of their handiwork.
Animals that can be seen at the park include ostriches, llamas, wallabies, squirrel monkeys, chipmunks, polecats, and lemurs - but there is also plenty of smaller, snuggly animals for petting, which is always a winner with children. So, if you are holidaying in the area, keep this budget-friendly attraction in mind.
Hopefully, these three places will provide ample entertainment for you and your family during your stay in North Wales.
However, if you want to head to Conwy or Snowdonia instead, there are plenty more great family friendly country parks, which we covered in our first blog in the series.
Perhaps you’ve heard of an attraction nearby but aren’t sure if it’s worth a visit - don’t forget you can always ask us for recommendations! We’re happy to help - just tweet us @NWHC or drop us an email.
Images courtesy: Loggerheads by © Copyright Eirian Evans and licensed for reuse under the Creative Commons Licence. Greenfield by © Copyright John S Turner and licensed for reuse under the Creative Commons Licence.