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Family-friendly things to do at Stowe Gardens

A boy and a girl play on a fallen tree at Stowe in Buckinghamshire
Children playing on a fallen tree at Stowe | © National Trust Images/John Millar

Adventures await your family at Stowe Gardens this season with lots for children of all ages to discover and acres of space for them to run in and stretch their legs. Leave your worries behind, enjoy the beautiful scenery, and set off hand-in-hand with your children into the majestic gardens.

Planning your family visit

Here's the information you need at a glance to help plan your day out at Stowe Gardens:

  • Baby-changing facilities and accessible toilets are available
  • There are buggy friendly routes around the garden
  • Sturdy buggies for the garden are recommended rather than strollers
  • Breastfeeding is welcome
  • The café is located around the corner from the New Inn and a children's menu and high-chairs are available
  • Pocket money gifts and children's books are available to buy in the shop

Cycling at Stowe

We'd love for you to cycle to Stowe Gardens and you can lock bikes up in the spaces provided in the car park. Small scooters and balance bikes can be taken into the garden but please don't bring bikes with pedals.

Visitors enjoying an autumnal walk in the landscaped garden at Stowe, Buckinghamshire
Visitors taking an autumnal walk in the landscaped garden at Stowe, Buckinghamshire | © National Trust Images/Arnhel de Serra

Family-friendly events

National Lottery Open Week – 9-17 March

Stowe has been supported by National Lottery funding. As a 'thank you', anyone with a National Lottery ticket, Instant Win Game or scratch card can benefit from free entry.

Feaster – 29 March – 14 April

Join the team at Stowe for seventeen days of activities this spring! We have a huge range of activities suitable for the whole family! Whether you want to take part in our Spring Bingo Trail, take in Stowe at dawn or climb Cobham’s Pillar, there’s something for everyone. Take a look below to discover more about what's on.

Spring Bingo Trail

Join our Spring Bingo Trail, on every day throughout the Easter holidays! Follow the trail, find the 12 stamp stations and complete your stamp collection card. Solve puzzles and call at the Stowe House visitor centre to pick up your free Cobham’s Coin. Free activity packs included!

You can also visit our Reward Shed outside the Farmhouse Garden and pick up a little treat! Choose from seed bombs, pin badges and sweet treats!

PIXAR Short Films Chill Out Room

Throughout the Easter holidays we will also have a chill-out space with cosy floor cushions showing animated short PIXAR films on a 60-minute loop!

Please note, children must be supervised by an adult at all times.

Activities for children throughout the Easter holidays

We will be hosting a whole range of hands on activities for children, including egg painting, leaf printing, windchime making and face painting. For more information visit the events page of the website here: Events at Stowe Gardens (nationaltrust.org.uk)

Cobham’s Pillar Climb - 29 March

Join us for a rare opportunity to view Stowe Gardens from the top of the historic Cobham's Pillar monument. Climb the 140 steps this Good Friday to the 360-degree viewing point for an inspiring insight into the design and scale of the landscape.

Please note that due to the historic nature of the building the stairwell is narrow and dark in places.

To book a place, visit Cobham's Pillar Climb | National Trust

Community Spring Clean - 2 April

Join us for a spring clean on Tuesday 2 April! Help us with our litter pick and get free access to the garden for the day! Head to Bell Gate between 10am-11am.

Storytelling - 2, 3, 4 April

Join Mark Fraser, storyteller extraordinaire for story times! Suitable for primary school aged children (and big kids).

Mark will be running sessions at 11am, 1pm and 3pm on Tuesday 2, Wednesday 3 and Thursday 4 April. Find Mark’s lotus bell tent at New Inn and join the fun!

Group Percussion Session – 5 April

Join Brackley based Accent Percussion for a fun musical session! Have a go yourself or simply enjoy the music and take in spring at New Inn.

Wildflower Walks – From April

Join us for Wildflower Walks this April. Go in search of cornflowers, fritillaries, orchids, cowslips, trefoils, etc. Learn about how we manage the gardens and parkland for nature.

Blossom Week – 20-27 April

Join us for Blossom Week! Grab a free blossom trail map and follow the bees and the beautiful blossom fragrances around the gardens. Learn about how we manage the gardens and parkland for nature.

Gothic Temple Open Days – 27-28 April

The Gothic temple opens its doors to visitors on selected weekends throughout the year.

Enjoy a rare chance to see inside the Gothic Temple, usually a holiday cottage for the Landmark Trust. With scenic views from the top floor, take a look inside Gothic Temple which was modelled on medieval buildings.

Booking isn’t essential but if you do wish to book please visit the Landmark Trust website.

Family-friendly things to do in the garden

Re-wild the children at Stowe Gardens by getting outdoors, away from the tech, and tuning into nature. The garden and parkland provide the ultimate backdrop for igniting imaginations. Explore a world of lakes, hidden woods, enormous temples, colourful reflections and twisted trees as you play and have fun on your family adventure.

Here are a few of the things to look out for in the garden:

  • Explore the hidden depths and woodlands of Lamport Garden - perfect for that game of hide and seek
  • Stop by the Sleeping Wood with its meandering paths
  • Find the birds and farm animals dotted around the lakes and fields

What do you need to know when visiting the garden?

  • Stowe Gardens is large, so plan a route to decide how far you'll go and choose rest stops along the way
  • There's plenty of benches dotted around for when those little legs need a break
  • To dodge rain showers, use the temples as shelters
  • There's plenty of spots that make for a perfect picnic, so bring along a blanket or use one of our accessible picnic benches for your family feast (please no BBQs)
  • We're happy for you to play in the gardens - bring a ball or a kite - just be mindful of other visitors and your surroundings as there are a number of lakes, animals, trees and slopes around the gardens
A little girl is sitting on her father's shoulders with the house at Stowe, Buckinghamshire, in soft focus in the background.

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