Top places to go this summer with Hampshire’s Top Attractions!

July 21, 2021

Don’t panic about filling the kid’s summer holidays with fun and days out this summer, let Hampshire’s Top Attractions plan your summer of fun! From events to fun days out at our attractions, itineraries alongside a Hamphire’s Top Attraction’s themed bucket list, there is something to help you make the most of the summer here! Have a read to find some of the fun days out you can enjoy with the kids this summer! The Festival of Hampshire’s Top Attractions is running throughout July and August, don’t miss out, enter our competitions and head to the events, to enter head to the bottom of the page!

Enjoy quality time at Marwell Zoo this summer! Go wild in 140 acres of beautiful open spaces while learning about hundreds of animals. Giraffes, tigers, a sloth, meerkats, and lots more, there’s an incredible animal kingdom just waiting to be explored! By visiting, you’ll be supporting their global conservation work.

Driving activities at Thruxton Circuit offer something for everyone. Whether driving your dream supercar or feeling like a Formula One driver on the main circuit, learning to slide a car at the skid pan, getting a 4×4 muddy on the off-road course or racing wheel-to-wheel on the kart centre. Thruxton has something for adults and juniors (from 8 years old).

Action Adventure Experiences at The Hanger @ Calshot are your one stop-shop for adrenaline-fuelled fun, take part in some high octane adventures, all under one roof!  Make your way to the top of the themed Take Off climbing wall, experience the thrill of Aero Trek obstacle course more than 6 metres in the air, zoom down the slopes in a Ringo and test your wits against the Laser Climb wall.  From 30 to 45 minutes each, it’s a great way to try out a new activity.

Sir Harold Hillier Gardens
Sir Harold Hillier Gardens

Visitors to the Watercress Line will be able to celebrate the fabulous 1950s when it turns back time for a nostalgic August Bank Holiday weekend. Jive dancing and live music, traditional fete fun and games, and special vintage vehicle displays will bring a 1950s’ vibe to the well-loved railway attraction (28-30th August).

Travel around the world on a day out at Sir Harold Hillier Gardens where you can discover fascinating plants from around the globe. See flowers and plants from far-flung destinations such as Korea, Japan, New Zealand, Mexico, and more. Take in the exotic views and walk along the Jurassic Gunnera Boardwalks where a tunnel of giant gunneras towers above you. There is so much for the whole family; with trails, play features, and restaurants too.  

The Isle of Wight is simply paradise for lovers of the beautiful outdoors and ideal – whether you are in it, on it, or by it – swimming, sailing or simply waking up to the sound of the waves. Wherever you are on the Island, you’re never far from the sea.

Explore the natural world at Gilbert White’s House and Gardens. Visit the historic home of Gilbert White, explore the Oates family galleries, get lost in 25 acres of beautiful gardens and parkland. Take a look around the gift shop and finish the trip of with a wonderful lunch, brunch, or afternoon tea from White’s café.  

For a summer holiday vibe, head to Portsmouth Harbour. Take in the incredible views from Spinnaker Tower, shop for summer essentials at discount prices at Gunwharf Quays, then stop…relax and enjoy a treat at Spinnaker Kitchen & Bar, located on the waterfront – perfect for watching the world go by!

Winchester Science Centre Intech Planetarium
Winchester Science Centre Intech Planetarium

Find out how far curiosity will take your family as you embark on an exhilarating adventure through the world of STEM (science, technology, engineering, and maths) at Winchester Science Centre. Explore interactive exhibits, watch awe-inspiring live science shows and demos, become immersed in nature, and experience spectacular shows in the UK’s largest standalone Planetarium.

A visit to Hurst Castle this summer is a great day out for the whole family! Relax as you enjoy a ferry ride down the Keyhaven River to discover the heart of Hurst Castle the Tudor fort. The views across the Solent to the Isle of Wight from the roof are spectacular! 

The Brickworks Museum is open Wednesday and Thursday throughout the summer with drop-in family activities planned every Wednesday during the school holidays. The Museum’s craft market and steam fair also return on August 22nd – tickets on sale now. 

Get outside in nature this summer at the Hawk Conservancy Trust. Your children will be inspired and you’ll all be amazed by the incredible flying displays, a real nature adrenaline rush! Plus, there’s a giant Top Trumps Activity Trail and bird of prey-themed playground.

Affordable family fun is key for us at Riverside Bowl, we provide exciting entertainment for all – Classic bowling, glow-in-the-dark mini-golf, and amusements, along with delicious refreshments to keep you energised. 

Discover Robin Hill on the Isle of Wight this summer! 88 acres of rolling parkland, natural woodland, and countryside gardens for exploration, adventure, and entertainment. With adventure play, rides, treetop walkways, falconry, and their full summer event calendar, the park is one of the Island’s most popular attractions. 

Create magical family memories in the Isle of Wight’s Land of Imagination this summer! Blackgang Chine is one of the Isle of Wight’s most-loved family days out. With their full summer event calendar, you can become a courageous dinosaur keeper, magical fairy, rootin’ tootin’ cowboy, and a swashbuckling pirate! 

Butser Ancient Farm
Butser Ancient Farm

Head to Butser Ancient Farm to discover the ancient past and journey from the Stone Age to the Saxon periods in the stunning South Downs National Park. This summer they are also building a new Bronze Age roundhouse using traditional techniques – discover experimental archaeology in action as you step back in time!

Why not take a family trip to Houghton Lodge Gardens this summer? They have 14 acres of stunning, idyllic gardens that sit right beside the peacefully flowing River Test. Take a stroll through the gardens, meet the sheep and the alpacas, don’t forget to stop for lunch or a coffee in the tearoom.

To enter the Festival of Hampshire’s Top Attractions competitions click here!