As the New Year dawns, elements can conspire to scupper family days out: the “seasonal” weather, return to work and school, a post-Christmas lack of funds and get-up-and-go. Mustering the energy to get off the sofa and thinking where can you go that won’t break the bank?

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Just seven miles from the centre of Leicester, and 10 minutes’ drive from the M1, Bradgate Park is an inspiring gateway to outdoor exploration for the whole family. First enclosed as a deer park around 800 years ago, it now provides 830 acres of publicly accessible countryside. 

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London’s largest Site of Special Scientific Interest and a National Nature Reserve, there’s nowhere better to discover 2,500 acres of countryside just a stone’s throw from central London. Even in the winter, its ancient woods, rolling hills and wide-open grasslands are bursting with life, and easier to spot.

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Packed with family attractions, naturally stunning Calderglen Country Park extends over 5km along a scenic wooded glen beloved by nature lovers and weekend ramblers alike. Starting from the information point at the top of the main drive, there are over eight miles of nature trails through the woods and along the banks of the River Calder.

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Set in 1000 acres of glorious parkland, lakes, and medieval vistas, Margam Country Park offers natural beauty, history, wildlife and a wide range of fun activities and facilities to make it one of the best family days out in Wales. Thanks to miles of great trails and acres of meadows and woodland just ripe for exploring.

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