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Summer holiday boredom busters - our top picks for Essex


Looking for things to do over the summer holidays? We've hand-picked fun thing to beat summer holiday boredom.

Summer is here! The six-week long holidays always bring up the age-old dilemma of what to do to keep the kids entertained without spending a small fortune.

We’ve rounded up some great resources to help you find out what’s on this summer across the county to fit a variety of budgets.

Visit Essex is home to a huge number of events, from weekly local markets to historical events and exhibitions, you can filter by date and event type to find the perfect day out. Whether it’s just getting out the house for a bit, or you’d like to make a day of it, there’s lots to look at here.

If you’re looking to get fitter and healthier over the summer, ActiveEssex is a great resource. There’s lots of information around getting children and families active, as well as how to get active for free, and so much more.

Maybe a day in the Great Outdoors is up your street? If that sounds like the type of thing you’d like to do more of this summer, check out Explore Essex. This website will help you discover your local country parks, what’s on around you, and has information about where your children can play and explore fun trails.

Not forgetting some of the county’s most-loved tourist attractions, such as:

  • Colchester Castle – If you're a Colchester resident you can upgrade to a Museum Pass for free, which you can use for a year at the castle, Hollytrees Museum and the Natural History Museum.
  • Colchester Zoo – Whilst this is a more expensive day out, you can use Tesco Clubcard Vouchers to help with your ticket price. It may be worth considering saving up for a Zoo Pass too for annual entry and discounted guest tickets, as well as entry into other zoos.
  • Southend is home to the pier and Adventure Island, which is a guaranteed fun day out. You can save £10 by booking your day pass online, or upgrade for year-round visits.

You can check out other tourist attractions here.

Our Parkside Community Hub will also be hosting free children’s cooking sessions. Suitable for kids aged 7-12 years old, these free sessions will teach them about healthy, balanced meals and some hands-on cooking skills. The sessions take place on 31 July, 7, 14, and 21 August. Booking is essential, so please email to book or call 0300 555 0500.

Days Out With the Kids has taken the hard work out of finding things to do. You can discover over 8,000 days out to enjoy or check out their suggestions for things to do at home – after all, a British summer will have a few rainy days in! This blog from May shares where you can eat for free or cheaply over the holidays, and whilst this is from the May half-term, keep an eye out for updates and offers, as most chain restaurants in this list run the offers again in the school holidays.

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