February half-term adventures with the National Trust around Hampshire
18 – 26 February
Half-term is fast approaching and there are lots of activities to get kids outdoors and having fun with the National Trust.
If you’ve been stuck indoors this winter, then February half-term is the perfect opportunity for the whole family to enjoy some time together exploring our beautiful landscapes as they gradually reveal signs of spring colour and wildlife after the colder winter months.
Try quiz-packed and creative outdoor trails, making your mark on a Tudor roof, and picking up some top baking tips. You’ll be able to tick off a few ‘50 things to do before you’re 11 ¾’ challenges too, from den-building to geocaching.
Here are some highlights in Hampshire:
Scribbles and Sketches, 18 – 26 February, suggested donation £1
Discover your inner artist on this creative activity trail packed with things to make, draw and do, inspired by Mottisfont’s Rex Whistler exhibition. If you need a bit of inspiration yourself before you set off, nip into the house to see Rex’s glorious trompe l’oeil artwork – on permanent display in Mottisfont’s Whistler room.
Tag-a-Tile, every day from 18 February, suggested donation £5
This former Tudor ‘power house’ is undergoing a massive roof conservation project, and you can be a part of it. Over the centuries, kings, queens and courtiers have made their own mark on The Vyne, with emblems carved in wood, stone and lead. From 18 February you can make your own mark on the new roof by ‘tagging’ a handmade clay tile. Your illustrated tile will be put on the roof, for craftsmen to discover in centuries to come. Every donation you make takes us a step closer to saving this incredible house.
Winchester City Mill
Scavenger hunt, 18 – 26 February
Put on your explorer’s hat to unearth answers, track down items and complete missions on our scavenger hunt around this fully restored working watermill. You’ll need to look high and low not to miss anything.
There are lots of other activities on offer every day – view the fast-flowing river Itchen as it roars beneath the Mill, powering the huge waterwheel – an experience known as ‘the thrill of the Mill’. There’s also a chance to watch the latest CCTV footage of the mill’s resident otters. On Wednesdays and weekends you can watch millers turning grain into stoneground flour.
Baking demonstration, 25 February, 11am – 3pm
The Mill is well known for its fun baking demonstration days, and on 25 February you can watch the friendly baking volunteers make a variety of seasonal sweet and savoury treats. Take home recipe cards (small donation) and try some baking at home, using the Mill’s very own flour from the shop.
Closer to nature trail, 18 – 26 February, suggested donation £1
The gardens at Hinton are full of nooks and crannies – perfect for outdoor adventures. This February half-term, try out the new nature-themed family trail; kids will learn lots of intriguing facts as they work their way round the challenge.
Uppark House and Garden
Spring family trail, 18 – 26 February, suggested donation £1
Families can hunt for signs of spring on this half-term trail that takes children around Uppark’s easy to navigate gardens. Inside, you’ll discover a magnificent dolls’ house, underground tunnels and servants quarters that’ll reveal more about life ‘below stairs’ in this grand house.