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What to do around Farnborough with an 8yr old?

Virginia
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What to do around Farnborough with an 8yr old?

DH is working the airshow in July. We may be joining him for the time he is there. I don't find much in things to do while we are there other than the airshow. Can anyone help me with information about what 8yr old daughter and I can do in the area. Perhaps some suggestions for day trips on the train? Can you rent bikes locally? Any easy family trails. Would love to see the countryside if its not too hilly. Any help would be greatly appreciated!

6 replies to this topic
Basingstoke, United...
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1. Re: What to do around Farnborough with an 8yr old?

You may find the traffic a bit of a problem during air show week.

Farnborough is not really ever a safe place for family cycling.

You are not too far from London by train.

In the other direction Basingstoke has a shopping centre with many restaurants and 2 cinemas. There is also an ice rink, swimming pool, bowling, etc.

It will largely depend on whether you have a car and are willing to sit in the inevitable traffic queues.

If you do have a car, Legoland and Bird World are only a short drive away.

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Virginia
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2. Re: What to do around Farnborough with an 8yr old?

Thanks so much for the info. We will have a car, but I don't know if I feel comfortable driving on the "other" side of the road :) Sounds like we will be taking the train quite a bit of the time.

Basingstoke, United...
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3. Re: What to do around Farnborough with an 8yr old?

Train is a very good plan - Farnborough traffic is notorious during the airshow. If you are not confident about driving on the left and changing gears, this is not the time to try!

If you travel after 10am and avoid the evening rush it should not be too busy on the trains - especially as you will going in the opposite direction to the air show crowds.

London Waterloo is only about 30 minutes away.

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4. Re: What to do around Farnborough with an 8yr old?

Mind you, we do manage with cars during Farnborough Airshow, so it's not too dreadful outside of the main arrival and departure times!

Other things to do: walking along the Basingstoke Canal, canal boat trips; wellington country park

Oh, and not mentioned in Basingstoke is Milestones Museum, where you wander around indoor streets that are set out in Victorian times and WW II times (nice and interactive)

Hampton Court Palace will be about 40 mins drive, and Windsor.

And don't forget the airshow itself! During the public days, there's loads to see and do for children as well as adults.

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5. Re: What to do around Farnborough with an 8yr old?

To add to these excellent suggestions, I would add Winchester and Guildford as options to look round, by rail. Both historical, very different - loads to do. Winchester, is much easier as on the same train line.

Basingstoke is a modern town, without much charm.

This isn't the straightest train journey ever, but if you are a fan of Downtown Abbey, the 1.5 hr journey might be worth it:

http://www.highclerecastle.co.uk/

Here's the link to check out train routes and times -

http://www.nationalrail.co.uk/

Here's the SW trains map - that shows where you can go from Farnborough by train

www.southwesttrains.co.uk/networkmap.aspx

These people do bike hire - http://www.northhantsbikes.co.uk/

Places like Alresford, Alton, Salisbury also very worth thinking about, and maybe even getting down to the coast - only 20 mins further from Winchester.

Happy planning!

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6. Re: What to do around Farnborough with an 8yr old?

Right here are some more ‘energetic’ suggestions!

Vary according to the weather!

Does she like cycling / ponies? Take the train to Brockenhurst and rent a bike from just outside the station!

southwesttrains.co.uk/…82311

Go to the seaside! Take the train from Farnborough to Bournemouth. Take Yellow Bus 2a or 2b to Alum Chine bybus.co.uk/timetables-maps/… There’s a beach cafe at Alum Chine. The bus leaves from outside the station.

If you are feeling more adventurous and it’s really sunny go to Swanage by train and (usually) open top double decker bus. Train to Bournemouth as before. Then catch the bus from outside the station for one of the best rides in the ever! The bus even goes on a chain ferry from Sandbanks to Shell Bay and you stay on board.

See wdbus.co.uk/site/uploads/publications/300.pdf for times. Swanage is my favourite seaside town! I used to go there on holiday as a child and our own boys adore it as well. There’s a wonderful seafood cafe by the old pier.

Maritime Heritage and castles in Portsmouth. Train to Portsmouth Harbour. You can either go towards London and change at Woking or via Eastleigh without changing. In Portsmouth you are spoilt for choice. HMS Victory and Warrior are both a short walk from the station. http://www.hms-victory.com/

Slightly further from the station is Southsea Castle http://www.southseacastle.co.uk/ which is wonderful to explore. Lots of tunnels to race around in! Plus you can walk along the fortified seafront and see all the ships going in and out!

Steam trains! For something different go by train to Woking and then to Alton and on to the Watercress linehttp://www.watercressline.co.uk/Home You should be able to buy a combined ticket at Farnborough station. For lunch walk to The Globe pub. Lots of ducks to feed! Ask as you leave Alresford station.

Edited: 26 June 2012, 20:14
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