Springtime detective challenge at Mount Stewart

When we heard that the National Trust had launched a Spring Detective Challenge at Mount Stewart we just had to take them up on it. So early on Sunday morning we bundled our three junior sleuths and pet detective into the car and set off on a spring time adventure.

Although we’ve visited many, many times, Mount Stewart always draws us back with its year-round calendar of events and activities, and each time we visit we find something new, reminding us what a magical place it is.  

Our walks often become treasure hunts as we stumble upon exciting finds – a bird’s nest, bee hive and rat skull (I think!) are just a few of the things we’ve found on previous visits.

Solve the mysteries

This time was different though – we were turning sleuth for the day to solve the three mysteries at Mount Stewart.   

There was a groan from our eldest who wasn’t amused by the prospect of wellies and a walk, until I explained the potential of bounty. All junior detectives have the chance to win a camera by asking an adult to post pictures of their adventure on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram with the hashtag #NTspringdetective, and when he heard this, our amateur photographer was off like a shot!

Exploring high and low in our search for clues we came across lots of wildlife witnesses’ including bees, ducks, tadpoles and even a newt.

The Springtime Detective Challenge runs until the 31May, so I don’t want to ruin your fun by revealing any spoilers. I will say though that the challenge wasn’t as simple as we thought it would be– in fact my budding detectives only managed to solve two of the three puzzles, leaving a frustrated me no option but to Google the remaining answer.

More to discover

Even when we’d called time on the springtime challenge my tireless sleuths continued their detective work – this time to spot one of Strangford’s most infamous residents – the seal.

On the way to the car we popped into the Strangford Lookout to have a look through the telescope and there were excited squeals when our middle one (the naturalist among us) located a large group basking in the sun.

A gorgeous house, beautiful lake, exotic gardens and the opportunity to see nature in so many forms – Mount Stewart once again proved itself to be a perfect day out for adventurers of all ages.