A great place for children to run around and have fun, with trails, regular events and Forest School sessions for families.
Allington Lane, West End, Southampton, Hampshire SO30 3HQ
Tel: 02380 688444
Animals, Birthdays, Gardens and Open Spaces, Historical Sites, Indoor Activities, Outdoor Activities
Ages 5 - 12, All ages, Schools and Groups, Teenagers, Under 5s
(based on family of 4)
Itchen Valley Country Park is ideal for a wonderful family day out. Its 440 acres of water meadows, recreational fields and ancient woodland lie either side of the River Itchen. Children can run around safely as the river and its banks are privately owned and there is no access to them. Purchase a laminated copy of the Trail Guide and off you all go!
The Meadows Nature Trail is approximately 2 miles long and takes you around the historic SSSI Water Meadow where you can still make out the mounds that marked the man-made channels. The Play Trail is a short walk for the children with fun play equipment for them to climb on. For a longer walk, head to the approximately 2-mile Totem Trail to see if you can find the four carved wooden totem poles in various locations around the park.
Look out for the nest boxes, which are inhabited most years by Blue Tits and Great Tits; a screen can be viewed in the Visitor Centre showing the antics of the baby birds and their parents. There are Forest School sessions for families with children aged 5 to 10 years, as well as Woodland Parties where children can celebrate that special day in the wild! Inside High Wood Barn Visitor Centre you’ll find information, interactive exhibits, a shop selling gifts and books, and a cafe selling ice creams, drinks and snacks. The Park has two permanent barbecues available for hire and various picnic sites. There is a full events programme for children; many of them require booking in advance. There is a small car parking charge.