50 things to do before you're 11 ¾ at Calke Abbey

A boy climbing a tree at Calke Abbey in Derbyshire

We think Calke is a brilliant place to visit to tick off items on your 50 things to do before you're 11 ¾ adventure... here's our top ten things to tick off this spring. Don't forget to pick up a scrapbook in Squirt's Stable to help you keep track!

1) Climb a tree

There are plenty of really big trees at Calke Abbey, and lots are them are perfect for climbing. Fallen branches are also great for exploring.

2) Roll down a really big hill

If you're visiting the house, head up the path towards the church and then roll back down the grassy hill!

The Pleasure Grounds are ideal for rolling, picnics and outdoor play. 

Roll down a really big hill at Calke Abbey
Children enjoying the Pleasure Grounds at Calke Abbey in Derbyshire
Roll down a really big hill at Calke Abbey

4) Build a den

Calke's woodland is the perfect hideout. We've got big and small sticks to make the perfect den – a fun activity for big and little kids!

7) Fly a kite

With lots of grasses meadows and open spaces, Calke is perfect for having a go at kite flying. Bring along your kite and make the most of the spring weather.

11. Go on a really long bike ride

The Tramway at Calke is nice and flat and perfect for a bike ride. The route goes through tunnels and countryside.

Don't forget to take a drink and a snack in case you need a rest, the route is about 8km in total.

18. Create some wild art

Collect some fallen leaves, sticks and conkers and make a spectacular piece of art. You'll find all sorts of art supplies in the woods and around the park.

22. Explore inside a tree

Calke Park is full of old trees and some of them have hollows so big you can climb right inside.

There are lots of trees to explore at Calke Abbey
A child exploring inside a tree at Calke Abbey, Derbsyhire
There are lots of trees to explore at Calke Abbey

25. Make a grass trumpet

There are 600 acres for you to find the perfect blade of grass to make music.

Top tip: make a hole in the grass with your fingernail then position the grass right in between your thumbs.

31. Hunt for bugs

We rank 10th best site in Britain for invertebrates, which live on dead and decaying wood. Check under big logs or stones, in the dead wood pile and under the bark or in the holes in trees.

Don't forget to put the bugs back after.

36. Make a home for a wild animal

Do your bit for wildlife conservation and craft a hotel for bugs, a house for a hedgehog or a snail shelter.

Collect lots of building materials such as twigs, leaves, moss and stones, then make a cosy home for a wild animal.

44. Go bird watching

Find our two bird hides next to the deer park and in the wetlands. Keep silent as a mouse and watch the birds at play.

Take a camera and see what you can spot. Rare turtle doves have been seen in the hides before.