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Family-friendly things to do at Buckland Abbey

Bright colourful rag bunting strung out along a line
Family fun at Buckland Abbey | © Barry Mitchell

Whether it's a woodland adventure, an amazing story of life on the high seas or a tasty treat from the cafe, there's something for all the family to enjoy at Buckland Abbey.

Your visit at a glance

-Free entry for under 5s
-Baby changing facilities
-Step free routes around the garden - please be aware that most paths are gravelled or slightly uneven with slopes
-Pocket money gifts in the shop
-Children's lunches available in the cafe
-High chairs available in the cafe
-Some parts of the yellow estate route are suitable for robust pushchairs

We welcome breastfeeding everywhere at Buckland Abbey. If there is anything you need such as a quiet space or hot water for bottle warming, please speak to a member of staff.

Spring into 2024

Blossom week

20 - 28 April, 10-5 daily

This spring, why not celebrate the beauty of blossom in Buckland's gardens? From a multi sensory display of crafted blossom in the Great Barn to Haiku writing, blossom bathing to a spotter trail, there's something for all ages to enjoy.

There's no extra charge for the activities, but normal admission will apply. The blossom displays are all over the gardens, so we'd recommend suitable footwear for outdoors. Most paths are accessible for pushchairs, just ask at Visitor Welcome for the best route to take.

Treelore trail

4 - 31 May, 10-5 daily

Enjoy a stroll, stomp or saunter on the yellow walk and learn about folklore, old remedies and hints and tips related to the trees on the estate.

The trail is about a mile long and you'll need sturdy footwear. Some sections can be accessed with pushchairs but the ground is very uneven in places so you may prefer to use a baby carrier if you have little ones with you.

Pick up a trail sheet from Visitor Welcome to take part. The trail is free but normal admission applies

To check opening times, please click here and scroll down to admissions.

What's great for...

Toddlers and preschoolers:

There's nothing better than a run around in the spring sunshine, so come and enjoy the colourful blossoms and some lovely fresh air!

Primary aged kids:

Can you use all of your senses on your visit to the blossom displays? Have a go at the spotter trail too and see what you can find in the garden this spring.

Older children:

Why not have a go at creating your own blossom Haiku, or learn more about the folklore surrounding Buckland's trees?

A child stands on wooden balance beams in the play area
Fun for all the family at Buckland's natural play area | © Steven De'Ath

The Natural Play Area

Newly reopened for summer 2023, the play area at the start of the red walk on Buckland's estate is a fantastic place for little adventurers to explore and let off steam.

Complete with stepping stones, balance beams, climbing logs and much more, all of the timber used in creating this playground was reclaimed from fallen trees on the estate, and crafted by the Ranger staff and volunteers.

Why not bring a picnic and enjoy the views across the Tavy Valley while you eat too?

The area can be used by children of all ages, although little ones might need a bit of help with some of the equipment and we would ask that children are never left unsupervised.

It's a bit tricky getting a buggy to the play area, so you might prefer to bring a baby carrier if you're planning to head up there on your visit, and please be aware that the nearest facilities are back at the main property.

Child pointing out den building activity - 50 things
How many of the 50 things have you completed? | © National Trust Images/Rob Coleman

50 Things to do before you're 11 3/4 at Buckland Abbey

With hundreds of acres of woodland to explore, there are so many activities to try out at Buckland. Here are a few of our favourite ideas:

No.1 Get to know a tree

There are thousands of trees on the estate, including some awesome oaks, beautiful beeches and fabulous firs. Can you guess how old some of them might be, and imagine what stories they could tell?

No.6 Go welly wandering

Raining? No problem. Grab your wellies and splash through some puddles, or listen to the raindrops on the leaves overhead.

No.34 Discover wild animal clues

The woodland at Buckland is home to all kinds of wonderful wildlife. Can you look for footprints and listen for calls? Maybe if you are very lucky you'll even spot some of the beautiful animals and birds yourself.

No.48 Keep a nature diary

Now you've had an adventure, why not record your discoveries in a special notebook? You could draw what you have seen and heard, maybe even find a special leaf or stick to remind yourself of your amazing day?

The exterior of Abbot's tower at Buckland Abbey in the evening light

Discover more at Buckland Abbey

Find out when Buckland Abbey is open, how to get here, the things to see and do and more.

You might also be interested in

A panoramic view of Buckland Abbey seen from the north. The Great Barn stands out prominently to the left.

Visiting Buckland Abbey and Great Barn 

Explore the abbey which is part museum, part house, and filled with treasures. Step inside the medieval Great Barn: a tithe barn unchanged since it was built centuries ago.

A verdant and inviting pathway through a wood

Buckland Abbey's estate 

Discover Buckland's ancient woodland on one of three colour coded walking routes. With abundant wildlife and far reaching views, it's a peaceful and fascinating place to enjoy a stroll.

Two large dogs on leads held by two people on a path at Lanhydrock, Cornwall, with grass and fallen autumn leaves beyond

Visiting Buckland Abbey with your dog 

Buckland Abbey is a one pawprint rated place. There are plenty of dog-friendly walks through the woodland and countryside to explore and dogs are welcome to relax in the Ox Yard Café.

A bed of yellow, red and purple tulips against a stone wall, leading to a glasshouse in the background.

Buckland Abbey's gardens 

From beautiful blooms to bountiful harvests, the gardens at Buckland Abbey are full of colour and seasonal interest. Soak up the history of this special place as you admire the planting, or simply enjoy the peace and tranquillity as you sit a while on one of the benches.

Two visitors sit at a table in the cafe with cups of tea and cakes

Eating and shopping at Buckland Abbey 

Take a break at the Ox Yard Café, which serves tea, coffee, light lunches and sweet treats, before finding a special gift or souvenir in the National Trust shop, art galleries and second-hand bookshop.