Educational day's out ...

One of the many things that home educators do is arrange lots of educational day trips.

There are some great discounts to be had when these days out are arranged in a group of home educators, instead of individual families.

I come across a lot of great places to go, some would just make for a great day out for us right now, but would have fantastic educational value at some point.

So rather than tucking them away in my memory box and most probably forgetting about them, I will post them here and update when I find something new, if we have experienced it I will write a small review of our experience.

If you find anything I haven't got here please feel free to post them in the comments and we may just get to check them out.

I mainly concentrate on easy to reach within 2 hours drive of Manchester places, but there may be some that are worth an overnight trip further afield and each one has a link to the site for you to click on and explore more. 

Tatton Park

Tatton Park hosts a number of educational events right throughout the year, we love visiting tatton park at any time. 

Take a look at a video the kids created from one of our visits there

Or why not  have a look at one of our blog posts about one of the events we have been to there. The Shift Workshop

Manchester Police Museum 

What a brilliant little place, I have passed this place many a time over the years and never really given it a second thought, until I arranged with another home ed family to pop along for an afternoons meet up. Oh my word what a brilliant little place, you learn all about the local police station back in Victorian times and it is so much fun and pretty eye opening for the kids to see how it was back in the day, this is a highly recommended day.

Creswell Craggs 

A brilliant day out to look at the stone age caves and some stone age drawings, we loved it here and where fortunate enough that there was a food festival while we were there, which obviously went down well with us, we also got to watch some bees beavering away up close and personal and obviously buy some great honey too.

Kenyon Hall  

Pick your own fruit and Veg, this is great for a June Visit. 

A fabulous place, and we had lots of fun making Jam afterwards... nom nom nom...
We went here last year when they had the Birds of Prey demonstration, the kids really enjoyed getting their hard hats on and going through the Victorian tunnel but they enjoyed the birds of prey display more.  The little cafe is a small space but they have some great food on offer and it is comfortable and clean and they make great coffee.
The kids loved it here exploring space and getting hands on in the workshop, Oliver had a broken foot at the time so he had to go in a trolley to get round but access was easy, the cafe is fabulous with some great food on the menu and most importantly the coffee selection was great.

We went for a session on wattle and daub which the kids found confusing as it was plasticine, Oliver was adamant they should have been be using mud. We had talked about wattle and daub and how it was done and why, beforehand by watching a handy youtube video which you can find here  They had lots of fun wandering around the house and exploring the fabulous gardens.

This tour was amazing, unbelievably educational on how films are made and what goes into them. I loved it for that value but the kids where just in awe of being there. We will definitely be going back in the future at some point, we also attached on a tour around London in an open top bus, as Oliver in particular has a fascination with London.

The resources around Harry Potter that you can find around the web are astonishing from Maths, English, Science you can just about find any subject you want, so doing the tour really brings the learning to life for the kids and as we had done the Harry Potter Lapbook, which I wrote about in an earlier post this fitted in nicely.
A great place to meet the Sealife.
The kids will definitely be going again at some point, but we will have to try and plan it when there are not hoards of school kids in.

When we went the school kids were charging around all over the place and they don't have very much consideration for others, the staff (teachers) didn't care too much and looked like they where having a bit of a hard time controlling them, so the visit was marred slightly but in all it is a good place to go to learn about sealife and attach it to lessons.

It is also very close to Legoland Discovery Centre so we may well mix the two next time as Oliver and Louby are both great Lego fans.
No educational experience is complete without a visit to Chester Zoo.

We go a couple of times a year and they get something out of it each time that is different.

The Zoo does different educational talk and workshops and they have various events throughout the year so there is always something going on.
A fantastic Children's Museum, we spent a lot of time here when the kids where very small, they do workshops and home educator days.

We will be re-visiting in the future depending on what we are looking at, but this place also does make for a great day out when you are a loose end and need to get out of the house for the day.

Museum Of Science and Industry


This is a place we spend a lot of time, there is always something going on in the way of workshops, this is also a great place to go if you are at loose end or looking at something specific.


There are lots of arranged workshops here going on, it's a fabulous place to get yourself lost in time in and discover something different on each visit.
As it says on the tin, this is on the cards for us I will update with a review once we have been.
This one has recently been suggested and this looks amazing, lots to learn see and do, we will do this in the future at some point and as the distance is quite a way it we be something we do as a small holiday, maybe a day or two's break will be needed for this one.
This place looks fascinating, this is definitely on the cards when the kids get a little older, the paper recycling workshop looks particularly interesting  

There are lots of Galleries in Manchester that do educational workshops, we recently went to the Chinese Contemporary Arts Centre which I posted about for our Chinese New Year Celebrations Study. Manchester Art Gallery have lots of workshops and  things going on, so always available if you are at a loose end.
Both the kids have had a fixation on aeroplanes, and this year 2015 we are definitely going to visit the Manchester Airport Visitor Centre at some point, when we do we will post our review. There are educational talks and demonstrations but we will just on a drop in visit and have a look what is on offer and then maybe come back for the educational tour. 


We did visit with a home ed group and had a workshop about what the airline staff do and we had a look round the planes, we also had a chance to ask questions and watch the planes take off. What a brilliant day out it was. Oliver even plucked up courage to ask a question or two and was very engaged, great day out if you get a chance to go then do because you will not be disappointed. 

Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Service Museum
Greater Manchester Police Museum

There is the police and fire services museum which we have not ventured out to yet, but we went to the emergency services Day at the Trafford Centre last year and will attend again this year, as the kids are now a bit older and are more likely to appreciate going we will also venure to the museums around the same time as the emergency services day, the kids loved the event last year clambering on all the emergency vehicles.

Manchester Jewish Museum

This will be on our religious studies list to visit when the kids are a bit older. It looks like a place where you can re-visit and find lots of different things to do and look at.

Quarry Bank Mill 

There are absolutely tons of  National Trust places to visit and Quarry Bank Mill is usually on every ones bucket list at some point, we are no exception. We will be making a few trips here over the years, the great thing about Greater Manchester is the fabulous choice you have to support history lessons.

Animal World At Moss Bank Park 

The park is full of history and has a great butterfly and animal facility. I have only just discovered this and it looks like somewhere we will take a visit to in the summer as part of our nature lessons.

Conservation Centre - Liverpool Museums 

The only one of it's kind in Europe, I get quite excited with the rich culture of Liverpool, after being introduced to the place many years ago after collecting my passport in person, I took a look around and was amazed at the things there. Liverpool is exciting and there are lots of educational places to visit, I have been to a number of places in Liverpool.

I was even surprised to find they have their own little China Town. There are many museums to visit in Liverpool covering the maritime history, which even houses artefacts from the Titanic,  Slavery Museum,  which teaches both historical and contemporary slavery, The World Museum, which includes Outer Space and live creatures.

There is just so much going on educationally in Liverpool  we will be spending quite some time over that way in the coming years. I will keep updating on the great things you can find there.

Robin Hood Experience

This isn't strictly one place, its actually a few places in Nottingham covering the topic of Robin Hood, for these a few days would be good so this will be placed on our holiday list to experience some of Robin hood in an unhurried way, what better way to have a short break and do some education along the way. No childhood is complete without experiencing Robin Hood.

Hall I'th wood

If you are interested in the cotton industry this is a great place to go I believe, Bolton again is local and has lots of historical places to visit so check out the link for the Bolton Library and museum Service for some more great ideas.

Lyme Park 

Lovely National Trust Place with a lovely house and wonderful gardens and grounds. 

Astley Green Colliery Mining Museum

This is the only remaining Colliery,  apart from the steam winding engine and headgear the museum houses many exhibits, not least of which is the collection of 28 colliery locomotives, the largest collection of its type in the United Kingdom. This is a must visit for us.

The People's History Museum.

This place has changing  Exhibitions so it is always good to check back in there often to see what is going on, most of the events and talks  are free. 

Ordsall Hall 

This place offers a lot in the way of events and workshops and family fun days, something I will be thinking about for this year to coincide with our reading comprehension skills, as they do some great story telling activities.

Bankfield Museum

Covering the Victorians part of history this is an impressive mansion with lots of exhibits and event and workshops to participate in.

RSPB Discovery Centre - Lythm 

 We had a fantastic time here Mud dipping, we will definitely return

Bradford industrial Museum 

Covering textile machinery, steam power, engineering, printing machinery and motor vehicles.

Tamworth Castle

Want something from the medieval period, well you can't get better than this. 

Rutland Nature Reserve

Lots to do here on the topic of nature, from boat rides and bird watching, this is another short holiday that will be an educational experience 

MAGNA Science Adventure Centre

I have heard some good things about this place, hopefully some great group things can be arranged here, but this is somewhere we definitely intend to explore. 

Catalyst Science

Science discovery centre with events planned regularly.


As a prehistoric monument this is pretty impressive, a definite and another short break for this one is on the cards for us and it was, Oliver was not impressed, he thought it would be much bigger.

Imperial War Museum

Lots of workshops go on here regularly, packed to the brim with war stuff. We love this place, they have the most amasing projection covering all the walls narrating the personal  stories of people from the War, they also host some special exhiitions that regularly change and have fatastic coffee and hot chocolates to die for.

The Bronte Society and Bronte Parsonage Museum

For a literary delight of all things Bronte

Cheshire Military Museum

Learn all about Cheshire soldiers from 17th Century to the present day.

Dewa Roman Experience

Discover all about the Romans

Silk Museum

Discover all about silk from the cocoon to the catwalk

Working Class Movement Library

Houses a unique collection capturing the stories and struggles of ordinary people's efforts to improve their world, this high on my list to visit once the twins are older as I would enjoy this immensely.

Salford Museum and Art Gallery

For a mix of Victorian and 20th Century architecture, Salford Museum & Art Gallery, it is home to two fantastic permanent exhibits; The Victorian Gallery and Lark Hall Place. Lark Hall Place takes you back in time and recreates a typical northern street during Victorian times. Look inside some of the shops such as a toy shop, a chemist, a grocers, a blacksmiths and an artisan's cottage.
Fun fun fun who doesn't enjoy the Victorian era!...

Beeston Castle 

We had a brilliant day here, quite stunning surroundings.  

Hack Green Secret Nuclear Bunker 

This place looks great, they do some re-enactment  weekends so that you can see what the cold war was like:- the description n their website goes like this:-

For over 50 years this vast underground complex, remained secret, hidden on the outskirts of a sleepy Cheshire town. Declassified in 1993, the 35,000 square foot underground bunker would have been the centre of Regional Government had nuclear war broken out.
Built in the 1950's as part of a vast secret radar network codenamed 'ROTOR'. The bunker today offers a warm welcome to anyone looking for a totally different day out.

We ended up venturing here and despite a few hickups, we will go back again...

Anderton Boat Lift

This was an accidental find for us but it was a great day out and they have great coffee.. 

Big Pit National Coal Museum

A fascinating place to visit run by coal miners, many of which worked at the pit when it was open, they are a minefield of information, friendly and they have great coffee.

Greyhill or Bullice Farm

16th Century Re- enactment farm completely renovated to 16th century standards, amazing place and so educational it made me want to become a re-enactor. There was a BBC documentary done on the place too which has 12 parts that you can find here 

We loved this place and definitely will go back when they do more educational days.

Caerleon Roman Town



What a wonderful place we were al in our element here, of course we timed it so that there were events going on around us but what a fabulous place to visit at any time of year.

We visited the Roman Baths, the amphitheatre,  the museum, the Roman barracks and there was fate going on too.

Stockport Council

In my opinion Stockport Council has a very good organised  'things to do' list. You can find them all in one place on their website, Places to visit here include the following, amongst others:-

The Air Raid Shelters,
The Hat Works
Staircase House
Stockport War Memorial art Gallery

Nearby there is Portland Basin and The Museum of the Manchester Regiment

Ellen Road Engine House 

This place in Rochdale is apparently  the worlds Largest Working Steam Mill Engines

Clayton Hall Living History Museum 

Step back into the Victorian era.

Bradford Industrial Museum

Textile Mill

Godlee Observatory

This is not strictly a day out but visits can be arranged.

Dig Greater Manchester

There are quite a few archaeology digs around greater Manchester, these make for a great day out with the kids digging up some artefacts. 

This Bradford Museum explores the science and culture of light and sound technologies and their impact on our lives, as they aim to inspire the scientists and engineers of the future.
This place is fabulous, it is the largest Bomber Command museum in the country! The only place in the country where you can see a Lancaster Bomber... 


We were lucky enough to see the Avro Lancaster NX611 'Just Jane' restoration in progress.

We learnt about the role the Dam busters played in WW2 and how the Lancaster Bomber came to be.

This is an incredible place, you feel emotional just being here and it brings it home why WW2 and the people who took part, with great sacrifice, must never be forgotten.

Lincoln Castle

This is another one that is a little bit further than 2 hours drive from Manchester, but not much further. This is a must for us in the next few weeks as we have been looking at William the Conqueror and this place also houses the Magna Carter, this I am in expectation of being very educational and quite excited about..

Todmorden Observatory (Astronomy Centre) 

This place is amazing, they are very helpful and friendly!. They run shows of the constellations and give a talk, you can look through their telescopes and they will explain anything you like about the sky, they have a fabulous computer sky map telescope and they have regular events throughout the year and public viewings on Saturdays. 

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