All things spring at Hampshire’s Top Attractions

April 4, 2018

We head into April with a spring in our step thanks to all things wonderful at Hampshire’s Top Attractions. Fill your Easter holidays and beyond with new exhibits, full days of adventure, and unforgettable family fun!

Make A Day Of It


Visit Paultons this April and discover Little Africa, the Park’s own little corner of Africa featuring amazing birds and animals of the savannah. From Meerkats to Porcupines, Lizards to Fennec Foxes there are animals of all shapes and sizes to delight and entertain.

Visit Marwell Zoo’s biggest ever exhibit, a new Tropical House, now open! The £8m exhibit spans two levels offering fantastic vantage points across a lush, tropical canopy and the opportunity to experience the captivating life of the forest floor. Share the habitat and enjoy uninterrupted, close-up views of new, colourful and charismatic mammals, birds, reptiles, amphibians, fish and insects. Plus, keep an eye out for their baby white-faced saki monkey!

Spring in Hampshire
Bouncy net bridges at Blackgang Chine

Visit the Isle of Wight and put the spring in your step this April at Blackgang Chine! Explore the brand new bouncy net bridges, as Dodo Valley returns more adventurous than ever for Blackgang’s 175th Birthday Celebrations!

This month is the perfect time to visit Winchester Cathedral! Marvel at the newly restored Presbytery Vault, visible for the first time in four years, and discover 1,000 years of history with a free family trail.

Bring the family to connect with nature and let your children blow off steam in brand new adventure playground and children’s activity trail this April at the Hawk Conservancy Trust.

Exciting Escapes now has 9 escape room adventures split across 2 sites – Southampton and Basingstoke. Rated on TripAdvisor as the 2nd and 3rd most fun things to do in Hampshire (over 1,400 5 star reviews!), why not do something totally different in April and take on a 60 minute mission for British Intelligence? – perfect for friends and families of all ages!

Robin Hill’s stunning ancient woodland will be transformed by a sea of bluebells, filling the park with colour and beauty, as spring breathes new life into the gardens. Enjoy relaxing woodland walks, interactive falconry displays and make the most of being outdoors on the Isle of Wight this spring!

Here at the Bombay Sapphire Distillery, we can’t guarantee the summer weather but we can guarantee that our summer opening hours have arrived. We will be open from 10am to 8pm every day giving you even longer to enjoy a visit with us. Check out the website to choose your experience.

Whatever the time of year, there is always so much to see and do at the Watercress Line! Enjoy unlimited rides on their steam trains through the Hampshire countryside with four charming stations to explore. Get up close to the locos in the loco yard at Ropley and let the kids run wild at the play area while you enjoy your picnic. Learn about the goods trains in the exhibition at Medstead and don’t forget to pick up one of our new activity leaflets or purchase our activity book full of puzzles, facts and stories!


Especially For Spring


Spring in Hampshire
14-18 NOW Poppies / Tower of London / ® Richard Lea-Hair and Historic Royal Palaces

Royal Armouries will present Poppies: Wave by artist Paul Cummins and designer Tom Piper at Fort Nelson, near Portsmouth, as part of the final year of 14-18 NOW’s UK-wide tour of the iconic poppies. The sculpture will be at Fort Nelson from 13 April to 24 June 2018.

Head to Chawton House on the 24th April for a Looking after Roses workshop. This workshop, led by expert horticulturalist Thomas Stone, tackles the ways to get the best out of your roses this summer, looking at how to keep them healthy and which pests and diseases to look out for and well as growing tips and advice.

Discover bold, beautiful and brilliantly diverse works by the 12 finalists of the Woman’s Hour Craft Prize at Mottisfont. From a bespoke bicycle to willow sculpture, this exhibition showcases some of the most innovative and exciting craft makers in the UK.

Walk the Wight! The popular Isle of Wight Walking Festival sponsored by Warners Leisure Hotels returns from April 28 to May 13, with local and visiting walkers of all ages and abilities invited to set-off across the Island on a wide choice of themed walks, which can be found on its own, dedicated Visit Isle Of Wight website.

Expect flying tents, diving bears, massive carrots and Ibiza anthems as the Noisy Animals go on holiday in the ridiculously funny story by Bristol-based maker of nonsense and rock ‘n’ roll theatre shows Ed Patrick (aka Kid Carpet), Noisy Holiday at Nuffield Southampton Theatres.

Based on real people aboard the most legendary ship in the world, Maury Yeston and Peter Stone’s stunning musical focuses on the passengers hopes and aspirations. The original Broadway production of Titanic The Musical won five Tony Awards, including Best Musical, Best Score and Best Book. See it at The Mayflower Theatre.

A family Easter egg trail is taking place at Hurst Castle from Friday 30th March to Sunday 15th April, with letters hidden around this mighty artillery fortress built by Henry VIII. Arts and crafts will also be available so children can get creative and wear their arty masterpieces home with pride.


A Date For Your Diary


Emirates Spinnaker Tower’s popular pop-up restaurant experience returns to the iconic viewing tower for two days this April. Enjoy fine dining served 100 metres above sea level, against a backdrop of breath-taking views! Multi-award winning celebrity chef Stephanie Moon will prepare a seven course tasting menu using flavours from across Hampshire and the Isle of Wight. Sky Dining events in 2016 and 2017 both sold out so book now to avoid disappointment! Sky Dining with Stephanie Moon will return with an autumn menu in October.

Visit the Isle of Wight
Visit the Isle of Wight

Spoil your pet pal at Exbury Gardens’ Devoted to Dogs Day on Sunday 27th May, with a 20%* discount on admission to the gardens for all visitors with their four-legged friends! There are over 22 miles of pathways with a variety of walking surfaces and different habitats to explore. Dogs are welcome on the Exbury Gardens Steam Railway and also in Mr Eddy’s Restaurant and Café. Exbury Gardens provides dog bins, water bowls and a wonderful and safe environment to enjoy. No pre-booking required. *Discount applicable to one person per dog.

Drop the kids off for a full day of fun in The New Forest on a Holiday Adventure Day with New Forest Activities. Your children will make new friends and learn new skills including Bushcraft and Archery, all in the safe hands of their instructors. They’ll then take to the trees for an afternoon of high rope challenges (available 09:00 – 17:00, Thursday 5th and Tuesday 10th April).

Gilbert White & The Oates Collections have their first ever Nature Camp from the 9th-11th April for kids who have a passion for wildlife and enjoy spending time outdoors. Each day will be packed with a mixture activities including pond dipping, habitat building, butterfly hunts, animal tracking, bat box building, den building, wild art and Bushcraft.

To commemorate the sinking of RMS Titanic 106 years ago, SeaCity Museum is putting on a number special activities such as their Titanic crafts and object-handling on Saturday 14th April 10am-5pm. There’s also an exclusive theatre performance from Mayflower Musical Theatre. Small charges will apply for some activities.

Barking Bonanza at Royal Victoria Country Park on Sunday 29th April, join the Countryside Canines and Hamble Hounds for a dog show with a difference. Best in show? Most well behaved? They don’t care about that here. They want the ‘fluffiest ears’, the ‘waggiest tail’, and ‘best paw shaker’. If you think your pooch has got what it takes, then come along. Includes: Fun pup activities (with all proceeds going to charity), Hamble Hounds demonstrations, a chance to meet the professionals and trainers to answer your canine conundrums plus various stalls and refreshments.

The Brickworks Museum‘s Big Spring Steam Up, 29th April 11.00 – 4.00. The first big steam up of the year, they are in steam, the traction engines and road rollers are all in steam and its fun!. Trains will be running, Cafe open, Free Parking, and Free activities for children.

Extreme explorers at Queen Elizabeth Country Park – Thursday 12th April – 10.30 – 12.30. Not for the faint hearted, can you beat the clock! Take their explorer trail up through the woods, jump duck, dive around the assault course and finish off with a cup of cocoa and a pizza cooked in our clay oven. This activity is suitable for children 1.4 m and over (must be supervised by an adult at all times). Places are booked via the Visitor centre priced at £6.00 per child.

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