The Best Things To Do In Essex Near Me | Day Out With The Kids

Best Things To Do & Days Out In Essex

From big thrills to animal days out and historic landmarks, Essex is packed with fun things to  do with your kids all year round!


If your perfect family day out involves lots of furry, fluffy and feathered pals, your must-visit attraction in the region is Colchester Zoo where you can meet over 260 species of animals. They even have Red Pandas!  For traditional, laid-back farmyard fun, check out Old MacDonalds Farm or Marsh Farm Animal Adventure Park - acres of farmlands, rides, games and lots of hands-on fun in the barn await. 

Into thrill rides and theme parks? Adventure Island Southend-on-Sea should be next on your list of places to visit in Essex. If you’d rather unwind with a relaxing family day out at a beautiful historic house, Audley End House and Gardens is our top recommendation. While you’re in the area, you should also take the kids to Audley End Miniature Railway - a leisurely ride through the woodlands is good fun for all ages. 

We couldn’t talk about family days out in Essex without mentioning Promenade Park. It’s the most popular park in the region, especially in the summer, as it features a large water play area. Best of all, it’s free! 
Before you start planning your next outing with the kids, check out the Essex school holidays dates - those could come in handy!

  1. Racers speed on dirt track at Rally Karting in Huntingdon

    Rally Karting Centre


    Go Karting and DrivingGo Karting and Driving

    Rally Karting aims to offer you the chance to experience the excitement and exhilaration of off-road karting. Their 400cc Liberator rally karts, comp...

    Suitable for 13+ Outdoor
  2. Vue cinema screen. Source: PinkNews

    Vue Bedford


    Cinemas and TheatresCinemas and Theatres

    If you want a truly great cinema experience, then look no further. Jump into movie magic at Vue Bedford, where you’ll find all your favourites, from...

    Suitable for all ages Indoor
  3. Map and booklet for The Royal Tunbridge Wells Mystery Treasure Trail

    The Royal Tunbridge Wells Mystery Treasure Trail

    Royal Tunbridge Wells

    Tourist AttractionsTourist Attractions

    With a crook on the loose and a case to decode, your team of detectives will have to get their grey matter working on The Royal Tunbridge Wells Myste...

    Suitable for 4+ Outdoor
  4. A little girl playing in the ball pit at Wacky Kingdom

    Wacky Kingdom


    Indoor and Soft Play AreasIndoor and Soft Play Areas

    If your mini adventurers love soft play, then head over to Wacky Kingdom in Surrey, where there’s heaps of soft play fun to be had! Your little ones...

    Suitable for 0-12 Indoor
  5. Car park and entrance of Revolution Skatepark in Broadstairs

    Revolution Skatepark


    Ice Skating and RollerskatingIce Skating and Rollerskating

    Welcoming kids of all abilities on skateboards, BMX, scooters and rollerblades to pad up and get cracking at the Revolution Skatepark. Split into the...

    Suitable for 4+ Indoor
  6. Steam train at Spa Valley Railway in Tunbridge Wells

    Spa Valley Railway

    Tunbridge Wells

    Railway and Transport AttractionsRailway and Transport Attractions

    The Spa Valley Railway is a great value family-orientated day out, with full sized steam and heritage diesel trains providing a regular service, and...

    Suitable for all ages Indoor, Outdoor
  7. Families at Bedford Park

    Bedford Park


    Parks and PlaygroundsParks and Playgrounds

    The welcoming Bedford Park is a large, Green Flag Awarded (and has been for over 6 years) public space encompassing several play areas and oodles of...

    Suitable for all ages Outdoor
  8. Family doing the zip wire at Go Ape Chessington

    Go Ape Chessington


    High Ropes CoursesHigh Ropes Courses

    Swing high in the trees with a high ropes adventure at Go Ape Chessington! With an action-packed duo of an adult and ? junior experience, it’s a perf...

    Suitable for 4+ Outdoor
  9. Girl on climbing wall at Revolution Climbing Centre in Broadstairs

    Revolution Climbing Centre



    You can get started here if it's all new to you with a simple Climbing Taster (over 7s) or Climbing Trial (all ages!) session, where you'll try out a...

    Suitable for 4+ Indoor
  10. Swimming pool at Robinson Pool in Bedford

    Robinson Pool


    Swimming Pools and Leisure CentresSwimming Pools and Leisure Centres

    Currently closed for refurbishment, re-opening later in 2016 with new features! Robinson Pool is Bedfordshire's largest pool, situated in the stunnin...

    Suitable for 0-12 Outdoor
  11. Addison Howard Park

    Addison Howard Park


    Parks and PlaygroundsParks and Playgrounds

    In the landscaped grounds of Addison Howard Park you can picnic, play family games, enjoy the adventure play area and climbing frame suited for under...

    4 star rating Rating 4/5 (1 reviews)

    Suitable for all ages Outdoor
  12. Girl on high rope course at Skywalk Adventure in Esher

    Skywalk Adventure


    High Ropes CoursesHigh Ropes Courses

    Daredevils of every size are called for on the Skywalk Adventure, where zip wires, rickety bridges and tightropes are sure to test your mettle! Get i...

    Suitable for 9+ Outdoor
  13. Kids skiing at Sandown Ski Centre in Esher

    Sandown Ski Centre


    Skiing and SnowboardingSkiing and Snowboarding

    Sandown Ski Centre welcomes families but you need to plan this one in advance, the kids' sessions are pre arranged and need pre booking, plus the Ope...

    Suitable for 9+ Outdoor
  14. Cliff at Botany Bay in Broadstairs

    Botany Bay



    Botany Bay is a common name, this particular Botany Bay is at the foot of chalk cliffs halfway round the Isle of Thanet headland. There's a wealth of...

    Suitable for all ages Outdoor
  15. Jaguar at Banham Zoo

    Banham Zoo


    Zoos and Wildlife ParksZoos and Wildlife Parks

    Banham Zoo is an award winning attraction with lots of exciting animals and experiences to see and do! Passionate about animal conservation, the zoo...

    4 star rating Rating 4/5 (3 reviews)

    Suitable for all ages Outdoor
  16. Indoor soft play frame at Bumble Beez in Ramsgate

    Bumble Beez


    Indoor and Soft Play AreasIndoor and Soft Play Areas

    At Bumble Beez their caring and approachable staff are trained in disability awareness and all inclusive play. Their custom play equipment is designe...

    Suitable for 0-12 Indoor
  17. Clear day at Joss Bay in Broadstairs

    Joss Bay



    Joss Bay offers a sandy beach with chalk cliffs (be wary of restricted access here) with safe shallow swimming and lifeguard cover July through Septe...

    Suitable for all ages Outdoor
  18. Indoor soft play frame at Imagine Play Centre in Ashford

    Imagine Play Centre


    Indoor and Soft Play AreasIndoor and Soft Play Areas

    Imagine Play Centre is Kent's biggest indoor children's adventure play centre offering under lots of fun, excitement and adventure within a secure an...

    Suitable for 0-12 Indoor
  19. Team building activity at Kempston Outdoor Centre

    Kempston Outdoor Centre


    Activity CentresActivity Centres

    Kempston Outdoor Centre offer a full range of adventurous and outdoor education activities, and national award training on and off site. More than en...

    Suitable for 9+ Indoor, Outdoor
  20. Soft play frame at Adventureland and Youth Gym in Redhill

    Adventureland and Youth Gym


    Indoor and Soft Play AreasIndoor and Soft Play Areas

    Adventureland at Donyngs Leisure Centre is a specially designed indoor adventure play area for children 6 years and under, featuring plenty of slides...

    Suitable for 0-8 Indoor

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