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Review: Barbury Shooting School for kids

I come from Texas, so really I’m supposed to know all about guns. But since I won that riflery award at summer camp age 12, my shooting prowess has largely been on the wane. Don’t get me wrong — I love shooting (I did say I’m from Texas, right?), but the opportunities to practice don’t come along that often. When my 16-year-old stepson received a voucher from his grandparents for a...

Surrey: Family geocaching at Polesden Lacey

“Do you know what geocaching is?” I asked my 11-year-old, as we drove to Poleden Lacey. “You find things using a GPS. It’s boring,” she replied, staring out the window in the back seat. “How do you know? Have you done it before?” “I used a GPS once. It’s better if it’s just a map.” Ah, the enthusiasm of youth. After a wonderful Christmas break in...

Review: The Milestones Museum, Basingstoke

As another British summer arrives, the imploration on every parent’s lips is the same: I need rainy day activity ideas! We’re constantly on the lookout for interesting outings, especially as our teenager and tween are long past enjoying soft-play. We recently visited the Milestones Museum in Basingstoke and discovered a great afternoon’s outing that’s educational to boot. We were invited to...

Visiting Winchester: Things to do with kids

I blame the Mexicans. My husband and I had buzzed past Winchester on the M4 for years, always remarking that we should visit. The cathedral is one of the largest in England and we have a personal connection in that my father-in-law attended Winchester College. Still, visiting might have remained one of those things to do “one day” if not for dinner at Pitt Cue on Newburgh Street (just…go....

Cotswolds: Delicious food at the Upton Smokery

  One of the delights of the English countryside is farm shops. Countless times we’ve followed modest signs pointing to discover gustatorial Aladdin’s caves, full of luscious cheeses, tempting meats, fruits so beguiling they’re a little bit obscene. Often I’ll also pick up some bowls or interesting kitchen knickknack as a gift. When we visited the Uptom Smokery (@Uptonsmokery), I wanted...

Wales: Visiting the South Wales Miners’ Museum

Imagine the time period: It was the ’80s. We were collectively experiencing Purple Rain, we were wearing neon off-the-shoulder sweatshirts thanks to Wham!, and the miners’ strike was changing the face of that industry across England and Wales. Visit Wales sent Jenography and family to Wales to see what we could do and learn. We went to the Afan Valley, which is a beautiful area that’s a very easy...

Hampshire: Exploring Hillier Gardens with kids

  There are few things more glorious than an English garden in fine weather. Before I moved to the UK I had no real understanding of how passionate the English are about gardening. They feel about gardening the way so many other people feel about food or sex or myriad other things-not-gardening. I would recommend any visitor to England makes an effort to visit one of the fabulous gardens, and now on my¬†...

Wales: Mountain biking in Afan Valley

The first inkling I had that mountain biking was unlike toodling around Battersea Park on my Pashley was from the lovely Louise, owner of the Afan Lodge mountaining biking base and organiser of our bicycles. In a call before our visit, she initially had mused that perhaps our mountain biking coach could take us to the top of the mountain so we could have a nice ride down. In our second call, she had reconsidered....

Milestone Hotel: Family luxury in Kensington

I’ve added a giveaway of some of The Milestone Hotel’s luxurious Penhaligon’s Blenheim Bouquet travel toiletries (bath essence, body lotion, soap, shower gel, shampoo) and Fine Milk Chocolate. Read the post and leave a comment. It’s soooo easy. Go on, then. a Rafflecopter giveaway I’ve heard of dream hotels, but this is ridiculous. After visiting the sumptuous Milestone Hotel in...

Review: Self-catering in New Forest, Hampshire

If like me you’ve never been to the New Forest, I recommend cycling 6 miles across the middle of it, in glorious English summer. You pass low scrubby land, dark dappled forest cover, spindly bare trees with dark arms upstretched. On our cycle ride from Burley to Brockenhurst, we passed all these, as well as a fete featuring a fire engine, honeybee stall and women making raffia-and-flower coronets. And of...

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