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5 things to do in Shropshire this summer holidays

I have done this kind of post before and it has been taken really well. I mean we are all in this together aren't we? We have to entertain the kids far more during the summer holidays, some of you full time, others working around childcare and so on.

None the less some days out can be expensive so I have tried to find things that aren't massively dear or have short cuts to being a bit tighter on the money situation!

5 free things to do this summer
Image Source: Me and my Shadow

Cosford Air Museum

This is actually free of charge so should be on everyone's to do list this holiday. There is lots of hands on activities to do as well the obvious huge aircraft memorabilia that is dotted around the space.

*Worth noting there is a charge for the carpark though!

Ludlow Castle

These are some impressive ruins of Ludlow Castle which was once home to plenty of royalty. So if your little one fancies themselves as a princess of perhaps a king then this could be a great free day out. Take yourselves a picnic and you're bound to use a full day!

Lots of space to roam about here too for the littler ones.

Although it is free there is a request for donations :)

The Quarry Park

The Quarry park is a huge space to accommodate lots of people even on its busiest days. It is a great place to head if the weather is good because again there is plenty to do. Spend some time walking the river, rambling about the dingle, picnic on the field, maybe an ice cream and the play parks that recently went under a renovation.

British Ironworks Centre

This is one of our favourite spots in Shropshire to keep both kids and adults entertained! It has the biggest display of decorative metalwork in the UK. The cafe is really good too ut a watch out is that it can be pricey!

Carding Mill Valley

This is another attraction where you would visit if the weather was nice enough. You would ideally want it to dry here as there isn't much shelter to hide from the elements here. But it is great to just burn off energy.

This is a beautiful place to visit on a good day,  for half a day or a full day. The valley caters for a whole range of walks and activities, whether it be paddling in the stream, taking a gentle stroll to the reservoir, or a more strenuous walk to the waterfall.

3 packing tips for a holiday with young kids

Exploring the world with your family is an invaluable experience, as you get to spend some precious time together and make memories that will last a lifetime. Your kids will get to immerse themselves in a completely different culture and try new activities and foods that they wouldn't get at home. 

Booking the holiday itself is the exciting part and you can start planning the excursions and the amazing locations you intend to visit. But it's the part that comes before the flight that most people dread. Packing can be an arduous task, especially when you have to pack for yourself and the rest of your family. Making sure you've packed all the essentials is stressful, particularly when you've left it all until the night before. 

Here are three toptips on packing for a holiday with young kids, guaranteed to make your life so much easier:

source: https://unsplash.com/photos/TVllFyGaLEA

1. Be strategic with your carry-on luggage
Picture this: your baby is crying and the only thing that can console them is their dummy, but you realise that you've packed it away in your main suitcase. The next few hours are stressful and you whisper numerous apologies to the other disgruntled passengers on the plane. However, this entire situation could have been avoided if you packed your carry-on luggage more efficiently.

If it helps, write a list so that you don't forget the essentials like bottles and baby milk. However, check the airport hand luggage restrictions before you set off to make sure you're carrying the legal amount of fluids. It might also be worth packing some wet wipes and a spare change of clothes for the kids, just in case an accident or spillage should occur. 

2. Pack for all weather

The forecast could be sunshine all week, but this is subject to change and the weather can turn at any second. This could be potentially disastrous if you've only packed shorts when the heavens have opened outside, so make sure you’re prepared for all eventualities. 
Another great tip is to makesure you pack appropriate footwear for every child, including sturdy shoes that will keep their feet feeling comfortable even after walking long and muddy distances. Sun cream is one of the most important items you'll pack, as it will protect your family's skin from sun damage. It’s a good idea to pack some waterproof sunscreen so it won't wash off even when your kids play in the pool. 

holiday tips for kids

3. Entertainment is essential
Children need constant mental stimulation, especially on flights and long-haul journeys when they can quickly become bored. Or if they are anything like my children anyway! 
 It could be worthwhile investing in an electronic tablet for your children, so they can watch their favourite TV shows and movies during long hours of travelling. Unfortunately for my children I don't like them to have too much technology so they don't have their own but when travelling I do give them our ipad to keep them amused, for our own sanity! 
 It might even be worth packing your child's favourite cuddly toy as this can be of comfort to them if they ever get distressed. Packing some snacks for the flight will also be a good idea as airport food can be expensive as well as unhealthy. 

My Top Tips For Visiting New York

I recently did a blog post all around New York and the Best free things to do in New York and I thought I would continue my little series with my top tips that I would suggest when hitting NYC!

They are a real mixed bags but I stand by my tips, even if some of you may disagree. Of course we all go to New York for different reasons with differing expectations so your tips may vary slightly to mine. I would love to know what your top tips would be too though...

My Top Tips For Visiting New York

(1) Look at the different area of Manhattan when deciding where you stay. Getting around the city is fairly easy so you don't need to worry about being too close to one particular landmark, unless you want to of course. People appear to be sucked into the Times Square area because it is what they know, but you can get far superior accommodation by moving outwards from that zone for far less $! Definitely visit the area and soak in the sights, but it is busy and noisy and well there are far nicer areas to go to bed in!

(2) Don't be afraid of the subway. We put it off until our last day and honestly, it was super easy and we wondered why we hadn't used it previously.

Rooftop bars by the brooklyn bridge

(3) Get out and explore Manhattan. Our favourite thing to do was to just walk. Walk, walk, walk the streets and see where you end up! Most of the time we had a vague idea of where were heading but were not worried if we strayed off the path a little. There is much to see and if you are relying on tubes etc to get you from one end to another you may miss that special something. Of course the tbe is great at times and very, very handy but when you can, try to amble a bout a bit.

(4) Avoid the big fast food chains if you can. You may just find the best meal you have ever had at an authentic New York restaurant. There are some great Facebook groups where people are giving their reviews on attractions, cafes etc so head over there and wee what they have to say. I won't lie I had a cheeky McDonalds breakfast but it was out of desperate measures one morning at around 6am! (Jet lag.... )

Best Food in NYC

(5) This may sound a little odd but get out of Manhattan and wee what else is around. We walked over the Brooklyn Bridge one afternoon and spent quite a few hours milling about Brooklyn. We just wish we had longer to explore more. The atmosphere and pace was different and it was a really cool place.

(6) be aware of the tipping culture. All I would say on this is having a read up on the etiquette before you go!

Best street art in NYC