Fun family days over half term!

It’s that time of year again, the school bell has rung and the kids will be excitedly rushing home to start their half term week. If you’re stuck for ideas on how to keep the kids occupied this half term, there are many great value family activities and short breaks on offer on websites like Wherever you decide to go and spend some quality family time together, remember your family travel insurance – even for UK short breaks!** Read on for some fun half term suggestions that won’t break the bank!

Here in Blighty:

Longleat Safari Park: Based at Longleat in Warminster, the safari park was the first of its kind outside of Africa when it opened over 40 years ago! Discover a range of exotic animals from the comfort of your own car. See how you measure up to a giraffe, watch out for the zebras crossing, and be enthralled by the majestic lions and tigers. Opening times: from 14th – 22nd Feb 2009, the safari should take you around 1½ hours to complete.

The Roald Dahl Museum and Story Centre: Situated in Great Missenden the village where the famous author Roald Dahl lived and wrote for 36 years. The museum is great for the kids to explore their imagination with free story telling sessions and creative writing workshops. Due to high demand, booking is essential for participating in the workshops. Visit The Roald Dahl Museum and Story Centre for more information on the creative workshops availability. Opening times: museum visits last between 1 hour to 90mins.

Cadbury World: The mouth watering Cadbury Factory at Bournville near Birmingham is dedicated to the history of Cadbury’s chocolate. After taking a factory tour, head to the factory shop where you can pick up a wide range of Cadbury products for a fraction of the cost you pay in the newsagents – yum! The tour is optional and not necessary for access to the shop for those who just want to purchase cheap chocolate! Opening times: these vary throughout the year.

Explore London for free:

Science Museum:
There’s a lot going on at the Science Museum this half term with science workshops, guided gallery tours and interactive shows taking place every day. The mind boggling Science Museum has something to suit everyone, both children and adults! Visit the Science Museum website for more information on events. Opening times: from 10am to 6pm daily (excluding 24th to 26th December) and entry is free!

Changing of the Guard – Buckingham Palace: The changing of the guard is one of the oldest and most familiar ceremonies associated with Buckingham Palace. The ceremony takes place in the forecourt of Buckingham Palace at 11.30am, and lasts about 45 minutes. Opening times: There is no changing of the guard in very wet weather. During the autumn and winter it takes place on alternate days, so check out the dates before you go.

The Natural History Museum: has real dinosaur skeletons and countless other displays that appeal to children. Throughout February there is an itinerary of family attractions such as discovery trails, craft workshops and trolleys of interesting specimens to investigate. Opening times: 10am to 5.30pm and entry is free!

Theme Parks:

Chessington World of Adventures: A great family theme park and a fun day out for every age. Chessington World of Adventures also has a zoo where you can see many endangered species as well as enjoying three animal shows – sea lions, penguins and birds in flight. Be sure to visit the new Sea life centre which is home to a wide range of sea creatures ranging from shrimps to sharks! The theme park is located 12 miles south of London. Opening times: 14th to 22nd Feb for the zoo and sea life centre only – the rides will open on the 27th March.

Alton Towers: Perhaps the best known of all England’s theme parks, Alton Towers is home to two of England’s legendary ‘white-knuckle’ rollercoaster rides. Oblivion, the world-famous vertical drop rollercoaster; and Nemesis, an inverted rollercoaster, takes your breath away as it turns everything upside down. The resort also has crazy golf, a spa and a waterpark. Why not take a break for a few days and stay in one of the themed on site hotels to ensure you don’t miss out on any of the fun activities. Opening times: Theme park is open from the 14th Feb to 22nd Feb; you can save up to 20% online if you buy your ticket in advance.

Head to Europe:

Euro Disney: Disneyland Paris is a popular option for families wanting to give the kids the Disney experience without having to travel to the USA. The famous Disney attraction this side of the Atlantic is celebrating its 15th birthday this year and to celebrate are offering discounts of up to 40% on 3 day family packages. It’s easier than ever travelling to Disneyland Paris either on Eurostar or on a cheap flight from the UK.

Futuroscope: Also in France is the theme park Futuroscope. The park is based upon multimedia and audio-visual techniques and is home to several 3D cinemas along with other interactive attractions and shows, some of which are the only examples in the world! Check out the special offers on package deals if staying in the resort overnight.

Don’t forget your travel insurance!
If this blog has inspired you to book a trip away from home this half term, make sure you take out holiday insurance before you go. 24/7 travel insurance offers cover for a family for 3 days in Europe from just £8.77*.

You can get an instant quote and immediate cover by going online to 24/7 travel insurance and if you arrange your cover as soon as you book your half term holiday you will be immediately protected should you need to cancel your trip.

Remember, it’s not just trips abroad where you will need travel insurance cover. Short breaks away from home in the UK also require adequate insurance cover**. So, be protected wherever you travel with holiday insurance!

* £8.77 Includes Insurance Premium Tax based on 2 adults aged under 55 and 2 children under 18 taking out a ‘Standard family’ Single Trip 24/7 travel insurance holiday insurance policy for 3 days in Europe and travelling within 14 days of purchase and excluding personal possessions cover. Cover details and prices are correct at time of going to press (February 2009) and are subject to change.

** Many travel insurance policies, including, will cover trips in the UK providing there is pre-booked accommodation or travel.