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10 Things to do with your Kids at the Park

30 December 2022

Our parks are some of the most important places in our towns and cities, an escape from the concrete jungle. Even the smaller parks provide endless things to do with a bit of imagination. Here are our top 10:

Hit the Playground

No trip to the park is complete without a bit of climbing, swinging and sliding. And luckily for your kids, awesome adventure playgrounds are popping up all over the place. 

Adventurous play is so crucial for your kids’ development. It improves motor skills, coordination and strength, as well as building confidence and teaching them to manage risk. 

If you’re lucky, you might find one with an epic array of wooden towers, bridges and ladders such as the Barnard Adventure Playground in Islington, voted London’s park of the year in 2021. 

Watch for Wildlife

Many larger parks contain pockets of wilderness where kids can encounter Britain’s wonderful wildlife. London’s Royal Parks are famous for their deer herds, but parks all across the UK provide great opportunities to spot some animals. 

Stanley Park in Blackpool is a cracking example. You can spot all kinds of native mammals, birds and amphibians in the lake and ancient woodland, and the flower gardens are a haven for bees and butterflies. 

Climb a tree

Long before adventure playgrounds were invented, kids over the centuries got their thrills by climbing trees. And if you’re lucky, your park might contain a tree or two that’s great for climbing. 

It can take patience and a keen pair of eyes to spot a suitable tree - one with low, close-together branches. But that’s part of the fun. And nothing beats seeing a familiar place from a whole new perspective once you reach the top. 

Get Snapping

A scenic park provides a perfect opportunity for your kids to get artistic with a camera. Perhaps they’ll catch some shots of the local wildlife. 

They could experiment with different angles and capture how things change at different times during the day or year. 

Get your kids to look for the little details that most people miss, like the contrast between a dark statue and the bright orange leaves of autumn, or the reflections in a lake. 

Scenic Sketching

Continuing the artistic theme, why not bring along a sketchbook for your kids next time you go to the park? They won’t have to look far for inspiration.

Maybe your park contains some unusual trees, or some exquisitely crafted sculptures. Perhaps it offers a stunning panoramic landscape with the city as a backdrop.

Or why not zoom in and capture the fine details of a leaf or flower?

As with photography, the possibilities are endless.

Pick up Litter

It’s a sad fact of life that people drop litter, and it’s especially sad when it’s done in places of natural beauty. Nothing spoils a woodland trail more than a discarded plastic bottle. 

Many major parks have a community of volunteers, such as the Friends of Roundhay Park in Leeds. They organise regular litter-picking meetings to keep the park tidy, and welcome volunteers of all ages. 

But your kids don’t need to sign up to care for their environment. Why not just pick up a piece of litter or two on their regular trip to the park? If everyone did this, our parks would be even more beautiful and enjoyable.

Play Games

The sweeping grassy areas of parks are perfect for all kinds of games. Sporty kids can enjoy football, cricket, badminton, frisbee, gymnastics… the list goes on. 

Traditional favourites such as tag and hide-and-seek are also great in the park. Just be sure to set clear boundaries so children don’t roam too far and get lost. 


Every Saturday at 9 am, people of all ages, shapes and sizes line up at over 600 locations (mostly parks) around the UK to run or walk 5km. The event welcomes children, but they must be over four years old and accompanied by an adult if they are 11 or under. Some venues also provide a 2km Junior Parkrun. What a great way to keep fit together! 

In London? Bushy Park is one of the biggest and most beautiful Royal Parks, and was the site of the first ever Parkrun. It regularly has over 800 runners. 

Fly a kite

Large parks are sure to have big, open areas unsheltered from the wind. While some people might find this unpleasant, it is great for one thing - flying kites. And even better if there’s a hill or two. 

Mastering it can be tricky, but it’s a great feeling when you can get the kite swirling and diving in the breeze. Just ensure that kids are supervised as gusts of wind can pull the kite very strongly.

Have a Picnic

Sure, most major parks have a nice cafe or two. But they’re often overpriced and there’s no guarantee of quality. Why not get the kids to help prepare their own picnic before you set out, and then let them choose the best spot. It’ll give them a real sense of responsibility and satisfaction.

Find fun, healthy activities for kids on the Hoop app