THINGS TO DO IN THE SALISBURY AREA FOR KIDS

There is a lot on offer for families in Salisbury and the surrounding areas, whether you want a peaceful day at the beach, a walk through the forest, to ping around on inflatables, a day at a theme park or just splashing around in puddles. Here we list our top picks for kids in the area - all tried and tested by our own youngsters.

Tow children looking at underwater penguins
Making friends with the penguins at Marwell Zoo

Riverbourne Farm is in the Salisbury suburb of Laverstock. It is a community run farm which is free to visit and has donkeys, goats, pigs, rabbits, birds and plenty more. You can buy a bag of food to feed the animals, have a bite in the farm café or just wander around looking at the friendly animals. There are often trails, activities and events on offer.

Best for: under 10's

Food: café on site

Distance from town centre: 20 min walk

Noise levels: Peaceful


Clownabout is a typical soft play centre which is ideal for little ones. Ball pools, slides, tunnels, climbing frames, all the usual stuff you expect from such places, with free parking. If you visit during school times, it is usually just toddlers playing, so there are no bigger kids to knock them over.

Best for: under 10's

Food: café on site

Distance from town centre: 15 min walk

Noise levels: Cacophony



LazerA starts at 6.30 in the soft play area used for Clownabout. Kids and adults can run around the ball pools and climbing frames with laser guns shooting each other.

Best for: Over 10's to adult

Food: café on site

Distance from town centre: 15 min walk

Noise levels: Peaceful


JumpinFun is an inflatable park on the outskirts of Salisbury and although it is for all ages, they do run toddler sessions with soft play and ball pools. If you want to avoid the bigger kids then take your under 5s during a school day. There is a large café area filled with decent food and bored parents.

Best for: under 15s

Food: café on site

Distance from town centre: 23 mins by bus

Noise levels: Cacophony


Strikers is Salisbury's only bowling alley, in the same building as ClownAbout but separated by the café. There are only a few lanes so it is a good idea to book in advance. You can pay £2.50 extra and let the kids have a go on the climbing wall too.

Best for: all ages

Food: Food and drinks on site

Distance from town centre: 15 min walk

Noise levels: tolerable


Odeon Cinema is in the centre of town and shows all of the latest films which you can watch in medieval splendour.

Best for: all ages

Food: Snacks and drinks on site

Distance from town centre: 2 min walk

Noise levels: peaceful



Salisbury Escape Rooms are the only ones put together by ex-detectives and have been voted the #1 attraction in the area for fun and games. They cater to all ages and get great reviews.

Best for: 10+

Food: None on site

Distance from town centre: 5 minutes walk

Noise levels: Peaceful


Wilton House is not just a stately home, but has a large adventure playground in its grounds, with huge wooden slides, climbing nets, swing boats, trampolines and more, as well as an area just for the under 5's. It's very popular with families as parents get to enjoy sitting on the pristine grass and wandering through the gardens while their kids run riot. Read more about visiting Wilton House >>

Best for: any age

Food: Café and ice cream stand on site

Distance from town centre: About 20 minutes by bus, 10 by car

Noise levels: Tolerable


Salisbury has some excellent playparks which will appeal to all ages - whether its paddling in the shallow waters of the River Avon in Lizzie Gardens, following the Fairy Trail in Avon Valley Nature Reserve or playing on slides and swings in several of the parks. For older children, try Churchill Gardens which has a skate park, parkour and outdoor gym.


Outside Salisbury

Paultons Park is a big deal in these parts, and now has international acclaim thanks to Peppa Pig World which was added a few years ago. There are loads of rides for all ages, particularly the younger ones, with rollercoasters, pirate ships, log flumes and all sorts of rides to induce screaming. The park itself is lovely, with wonderful grounds and even some rides that adults can cope with.

Best for: all ages

Food: cafés, restaurants and snack bars on site

Distance from Salisbury: 17 miles

Public Transport: Catch the X7 from Salisbury to Southampton and get out at Ower


Adventure Wonderland is a theme park for little ones near Bournemouth with rides, animals, soft play, mazes, trampolines and theatre. There is loads for young kids to do here and it will easily fill a whole day. Older kids and teenagers will be less than impressed.

Best for: under 10's

Food: cafés, restaurants and snack bars on site

Distance from Salisbury: 25 miles

Public Transport: Car is easiest


Cholderton Charlies is a farm with a soft play centre and lots of things to do in the village of Cholderton. Its popular with young ones and often has events and activities on. Just 5 miles from Stonehenge, you could visit this farm afterwards to give the kids some fun as they really won't be impressed by Stonehenge.

Best for: under 10s

Food: café on site

Distance from Salisbury: 11 miles

Public Transport: Catch the X67 from Salisbury to Tidworth, get out at Rare Breeds Farm stop


Go Ape in Moors Valley Park is a tree top course which has different difficulty levels, set in acres of forest. Moors Valley also has fishing, a mini train, large playparks and other activities on the huge site. It can get busy at peak times and queuing to pay for parking can be a nightmare, but the kids will enjoy it there.

Best for: all ages

Food: café on site

Distance from Salisbury: 20 miles

Public Transport: Car is easiest


New Forest Water Park on the A338 road to Bournemouth, this outdoor water park has inflatables on a large lake for kids to leap around on. It is only open in the warmer months but is great for older kids. There is also kayaking, paddle boarding and wakeboarding on offer.

Best for: older kids

Food:

Distance from Salisbury: 13 miles

Public Transport: Get the X3 Salisbury to Bournemouth bus and get out at the New Forest Water Park stop


A bird of prey flying towards the camera at Andover Hawk Conservancy
One of the displays at the Hawk Conservancy

The Hawk Conservancy near Andover is an excellent day out as well as a really worthwhile charity. There are flying shows which adults and kids love, the site is immaculate and they offer lots of experiences such as Owls by Moonlight which is great fun.

Best for: all ages

Food: Restaurants on site

Distance from Salisbury: 19 miles

Public Transport: Car is easiest


Beaulieu is more than a stately home, it is also home to the National Motor Museum which will keep all car-mad kids very happy. There is also playparks, a monorail, a James Bond experience and a few small rides - I particularly recommend the ride through the history of motoring which is very relaxing and strangely absorbing. Easily enough to do for a full day out.

Best for: all ages

Food: cafés, restaurants and snack bars on site

Distance from Salisbury: 27 miles

Public Transport: Catch the train to Romsey then C17 bus to Beaulieu


Bournemouth Beaches are great for a traditional day by the sea in this very popular resort. Its an easy bus journey from Salisbury with regular buses. The pier is packed with activities, the sand is golden, the sea blue and there are ice creams, beach huts and everything else you could want for a day beside the sea.

Best for: all ages

Food: cafés, restaurants and snack bars abound

Distance from Salisbury: 28 miles

Public Transport: Catch the X3 bus from Salisbury to Bournemouth



Marwell Zoo is the largest zoo in the area and has hundreds of animals and five adventure playparks. The giraffes, tigers and penguins are the most popular attractions, but there is a wide variety and something for everyone.

Best for: all ages

Food: cafés, restaurants and snack bars on site

Distance from Salisbury: 30 miles

Public Transport: Car is easiest


Longleat is the safari park that started them all, and was once home to the eccentric Lord Bath and his wifelets. It is an excellent park with a wide variety of animals, some fabulous playparks and some great activities for kids. I particularly recommend feeding nectar to the birds, which land on you and drink it from your hands.

Best for: all ages

Food: cafés, restaurants and snack bars on site

Distance from Salisbury: 27 miles

Public Transport: Car is easiest


Snowtrax in Christchurch is for any kid who has wanted to hurtle down a slope at full speed in a ringo or a skibob. They also have an alpine adventure park, snowboarding and dry skiing on offer.

Best for: all ages

Food: café on site

Distance from Salisbury: 21 miles

Public Transport: Car is easiest


New Forest Wildlife Park near Ashurst is a small wildlife park but its great for younger kids, very easy to get around in a pretty site and up close to the animals. Just down the road is Longdown Activity Farm which is great for young ones.

Best for: under 10s

Food: cafés, restaurants and snack bars on site

Distance from Salisbury: 21 miles

Public Transport: Car is easiest


Want to read more? Find out what day trips you can take from Salisbury and how to get there with public transport.