Skip to content

Family-friendly things to do at Cliveden

Children in the garden in the springtime with a bed of daffodils to the left at Cliveden, Buckinghamshire.
Enjoy Cliveden with all the family this spring | © National Trust / Chris Lacey

If you’re looking to get the whole family outside, look no further. Cliveden has something to offer everyone, whether young in body or young at heart. From fun walking trails to boating on the Thames, this is your one-stop shop to help you get the most out of your family visit to Cliveden.

Bike Policy

We'd love for you to cycle to Cliveden and you can lock bikes up in the spaces provided in the Walled Garden. 5 year olds and under are able to bring small scooters and balance bikes onto the estate. Mobility scooters can also be taken onto the estate but please leave bikes with pedals by the Information Centre.

Planning your family visit

  • Baby-changing facilities in female and male Gas Yard toilets, Conservatory toilets and in both toilets at the Doll's House
  • Accessible paths map available from the Information Centre
  • The Maze and The Storybook Play Den close half an hour before closing time

Story book Play Den

Little ones love to play in the Storybook Play Den, complete with carved wooden figures and structures to run around, climb and play make-believe. Situated in a corner of the Water Garden, the playground is next to the Doll's House cafe which is open on weekends and busy days for that all-important parental coffee whilst the children play. There are picnic tables too.

Cliveden's Giant Maze

Can you find your way to the centre of Cliveden’s Giant Maze? The current maze is based on one that was built for the 1st Viscount Astor in 1894 and has over 500 metres of paths winding amongst two-metre high hedges. The maze covers approximately one third of an acre, making it the same size as the world-famous Hampton Court Maze. Older children enjoy challenging themselves with this one.

Children admiring the daffodil flowerbeds in the Long Garden at Cliveden, Buckinghamshire.
Children admiring the daffodil flowerbeds in the Long Garden at Cliveden, Buckinghamshire. | © National Trust / Rob Stothard

Cliveden’s Woodland Play Trail

Created using the layout of the woodland, this all-natural trail is a great opportunity to explore the woods and let imaginations run free.

You can while away an hour or two on the log stepping stones, balancing beams, rope swings and more. There are also opportunities to strengthen your climbing and den building skills along the way. Situated in the heart of the woodlands just beyond the entry kiosk, off Green Drive, it is a great way to get active outdoors and all in the name of fun. Designed with children aged 6+ in mind.

Clive's Den

Just next to the play trail you will also find Clive's Den, an extra-special natural den for make-believe of all kinds. It is big enough for the whole family to hide, plus there are wooden musical chimes to play and it's a great secluded spot to pop your feet up at our tree trunk picnic tables.

Woodland walking

Discover some great family walks and trails in Cliveden's historic woodlands. We've plenty of walks to choose to get the whole family spending time together in the great outdoors, whether exploring the grounds or making natural discoveries together.

If you are enchanted by the woodlands and want to see more then why not try our Blue Walking Trail? You can start from the Play Trail and follow the blue arrows to take a short circular route. Scroll down this page for more information about the Blue Walking Trail.

Spot the local wildlife

Don’t forget to also keep a close eye out for the variety of birds, bats and bugs that live here, and if you're feeling adventurous, why not do a spot of bug hunting?

Just beyond the woodland car park you can also discover our striking elephant, bear and tiger wood carvings, as well as the famous Cliveden snails ornately crafted by local woodcarver Nick Garnett. These wooden snails, carved using a chainsaw, represent the tiny snails that were 'imported' from Rome in 1896 in the Borghese Balustrade.

‘50 things to do before you’re 11¾’

There are lots of '50 things to do before you're 11¾' activities to tick off during your visit. Here are a few recommendations:

  • No. 1 Get to know a tree: The woodland at Cliveden is home to many fascinating trees. As well as majestic trees, tranquil glades and far-reaching views there are some unusual features to look our for in our woodlands too. Nestled within this landscape of tree-lined rides you'll find curiosities including a flint grotto and a section of giant sequoia tree.

  • No. 6 Go welly wandering: A spot of rain doesn’t need to dampen your spirits. Pull on some wellies and explore the garden and woodland.

Aerial view of Cliveden, Buckinghamshire

Discover more at Cliveden

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

You might also be interested in

Family visitors enjoying a woodland walk

Cliveden blue walking trail 

A family-friendly woodland walk with a natural den and picnic area, plus a play trail featuring a rope swing, stepping stones and balancing beams.

DistanceMiles: 1.6 (km: 2.56)
A view of the front of Cliven House.

Things to see in Cliveden's house and chapel 

Take a guided tour of Cliveden house – now a luxury hotel – and visit the chapel, final resting place of three generations of Astor family.

Water Garden stepping stones leading to pagoda

Things to see in the garden at Cliveden 

Follow in the footsteps of dukes, earls, kings and queens at Cliveden as you stroll through a series of areas in the impressive garden, each with its own special charm.

Bluebells in the Woodlands with a path in the middle at Cliveden, Buckinghamshire

Exploring the woodlands at Cliveden 

Discover majestic trees, tranquil glades and far-reaching views as well as some unusual features in Cliveden’s woodlands, including a flint grotto and part of a giant sequoia tree.

Inside the Conservatory Café at Cliveden, Buckinghamshire

Eating at Cliveden 

Choose from a range of refreshments at the cafes and kiosks at Cliveden fuel your visit around the estate.

A family in the Lower Garden with tulips at Quarry Bank, Cheshire

Family-friendly places to visit 

There are lots of things to do when you visit one of our family-friendly places. Find inspiration for days out and discover a range of activities for everyone.

Two girls exploring the woodland trails at Quarry Bank Mill, Cheshire

‘50 things to do before you're 11¾’ 

Fancy running free in the fresh air, learning new skills and trying new things? Grab your gear and start your adventure.

view of boats moored on the River Thames in front of the Boat House at Cliveden

Boating at Cliveden 

Discover all about the popular pastime of boating, links to Wind in the Willows, and how to hire a boat to enjoy the River Thames at Cliveden.