50 things to do before you're 11¾ around East Down

Become a nature explorer when you tick of the list off 50 things to do before you're 11¾

Find out about all of the '50 things to do before you're 11¾' activities with this handy list. From stargazing to crawling through mud looking for animal clues, we have something for every young explorer.

We have 50 ultimate activities for you to enjoy, so get out in the fresh air and build a den, make your world spin by rolling down a hill or watch stars glitter in the night sky. You'll be a seasoned adventurer by the time you've managed to try out all 50 activities. And it doesn't end there. You can enjoy doing our '50 things' again and again, in all seasons.

Start your adventures by downloading the 50 Things Mount Stewart Autumn Trail here

50 things to do before you’re 11 ¾ at East Down

1. Get to know a tree – Strangford Lough, Nugent’s Wood, Reagh Island- From great cork oaks to weeping willows; we have plenty of friendly trees to get to know at Strangford Lough and Mount Stewart

Get to know a tree
Giant Sequoia Tree Mount Stewart
Get to know a tree

2. Roll down a really big hill

3. Camp Outdoors – Salt Island - Visit Salt Island and camp outdoors while looking out for otters

4. Build a den – Mount Stewart - visit our Natural Play Area and let your imagination run wild!

5. Skim a stone –Strangford Lough Foreshore - skim a stone while keeping an eye out for some of the wildlife that live there

6. Go Welly Wandering – Mount Stewart - get your wellies on and splash through puddles on our beautiful trails and walks

7. Fly a kite - Temple of the Winds, Ballyquintin  – climb up the hill on a blustery day and fly a kite while looking at the views over Strangford Lough

8. Spot a fish – In rock pools at Kearney, In the Glen Burn Stream (Mount Stewart, Red/Green trail) – A good spot is the bridge below the temple

9. Eat a picnic in the wild – Mount Stewart, pack a picnic and visit the folly for a magical lunchtime adventure

10. Play conkers – Mount Stewart - keep your eyes peeled for the horse chestnut trees dropping their conkers in the autumn

11. Explore on wheels 

12. Have fun with sticks – Mount Stewart, Nugent’s Wood - gather sticks in Nugent’s Wood and create a secret den

Build a den at the Natural Play park
Build a den at the Natural Play
Build a den at the Natural Play park

13. Make a mud creation –  Get mucky and make a mud pie

14. Dam a stream

15. Go on a winter adventure

16. Wear a wild crown

17. Set up a snail race

18. Create some wild art

19. Play pooh sticks

20. Go paddling – In rock pools at Kearney, In the Glen Burn Stream (Mount Stewart, Red/Green trail)

21. Forage for wild foods – The Red Trail at Mount Stewart is a good general forage route

22. Find some funky fungi – Mount Stewart woodland trails – Lots up on NewHill around the Natural play area

Fungi on a tree in the desmesne
Fungi on a tree in the desmesne
Fungi on a tree in the desmesne

23. Get up for the sunrise

24. Go barefoot

25. Join nature’s band

26. Hunt for fossils and bones

27. Go stargazing - Salt Island, Ballyquintin, Ballymacormick Point

28. Climb a huge hill - Bar Hall Hill, Scrabo Tower & Killynether Wood 

29. Explore a cave    

30. Go on a scavenger hunt

31. Make friends with a bug

32. Float in a boat -   Salt Island is part of the Strangford Lough canoe trail

33. Go cloud watching

34. Discover wild animal clues - Anne’s Point - otters

35. Discover what’s in a pond - Glastry Ponds

36. Make a home for wildlife

37. Explore the wonders of a rock pool -  Kearney

Kearney
Kearney, County Down
Kearney

38. Bring up a butterfly

39. Catch a crab at Strangford Lough

40. Go on a nature walk at night - Gibb’s Island

41. Help a plant grow

42. Go swimming in the sea - There are a number of sites such as Bar Hall Bay but please be aware there is no lifeguard

43. Help a wild animal

44. Watch a bird – Mount Stewart Lookout – pop up to the Lookout at Mount Stewart and see if you can spot some of our beautiful Brent Geese in the autumn.  Foreshore from our car parks are great places – Ballyreagh, Greyabbey, Horse Island . Also Cockle Island for seabirds

Every autumn thousands of Brent geese arrive at Strangford Lough
Brent geese at Strangford Lough
Every autumn thousands of Brent geese arrive at Strangford Lough

45. Find your way with a map

46. Clamber over rocks - Kearney, Orlock, and McCutcheon’s Field

47. Cook on a camp fire – Salt Island

48. Keep a nature diary

49. Watch a sunset

50. Take a friend on a nature adventure – Mount Stewart - why not bring your 4 legged friends on a nature adventure? Just remember to keep them on a lead or let them run free in our dog exercise area.

50 Things Autumn Trail Map

50 Things Autumn Trail Map

Leaves are falling and Autumn is calling! Download your 50 Things trail map and see how many you can do.

A family pond dipping at Cragside, Northumberland

Download the '50 things' activity guide 

If you want to download a PDF of the whole '50 things to do before you’re 11¾' list, then here it is.