Twickenham Riverside

… Here are some great summer ideas to enjoy with the kids, courtesy of Karen from Sunny Day Photography…


“I have to start by saying I am not a parent, but I am a qualified Nursery Nurse and auntie to 9 nieces and nephews. I love taking the children for days out that are not too far away and not too expensive but still fabulous! So I thought I would share some places that we have really enjoyed in recent years (sharing my own photographs and personal opinion).

1. Battersea Park Zoo

Battersea Park ZooWe love this Zoo … mostly smaller animals but some you sure wouldn’t see in everyday life like the Northern Tree Shrew! My niece adores the tunnel you can go in and pop up in the middle of the Meerkat enclosure – awesome idea! I also think the play facilities are really good and something to suit all the different age groups. Excellent sand & water play… as well as several other areas for play. We have been a few times and it has always been a really enjoyable day out and I think the ticket price is very reasonable. I recommend taking a picnic lunch with you. Battersea Park itself is a great place to spend time also. Battersea Park Zoo.

2. London Museum Of Water & Steam

London Museum Of Water & SteamA lovely local museum which regularly has special days & activities for children. We have enjoyed ‘Meet & Greet Thomas’ and various treasure hunts etc. They have things for the children to see but also to ‘do’… my niece loves pumping the water! The cafe is nice, a lovely garden to explore… great water play and of course the Engine Ride (check times and when it’s running). This is a great place to spend a morning or afternoon perhaps… you could also wander down to the Musical Museum from here or go across the road to the river and a playground, or over the bridge to Kew Gardens! London Museum Of Water & Steam.

3. Watermans Arts Centre

Watermans Arts CentreA great local spot for fab children’s theatre, workshops and cinema… really affordable tickets. Located right by the river, my niece loves looking out at the birds on the river. Spacious and easy to get around with a lift, ramps, parking etc. Just along from Watermans is an outdoor playground if they need to let off steam before or after a show.  Watermans Arts Centre.

4. Brent Lodge Park & Animal Centre

Brent Lodge ParkSituated in Hanwell… the ‘Bunny Park’ (as I’ve always called it) has open space, a good playground, cafe, butterfly house and a maze. Seems to be something to keep each child happy! Most things are free, the butterfly house is a really nominal amount and although small it’s worth a visit. We found some of the animals difficult to see possibly because they have needed to make the animals more secure sadly due to vandalism etc… another reason to show our support though I think, and still plenty to enjoy. Brent Lodge Park & Animal Centre.

5. A Stroll Along the Southbank

SouthbankAlways a great place to walk along… always something to see and usually more to see than the obvious landmarks. Some fantastic street entertainment takes place and the Skate Park is to be seen also. This doesn’t have to cost you money really… we didn’t spend any money along here (other than a donation to the pictured lady) and we had a fab time. I think the Southbank is a fun place with a great atmosphere. Southbank.

 6. The London Wetland Centre

London Wetland CentreGo and see lots of different birds and wildlife… visit the otters… take a walk on the wild side… go pond dipping… play the giant snakes & ladders… so much to do! A lovely cafe with great seating inside and out. We always get the ‘Duck Bus’ from Hammersmith Bus Station which takes you all the way into the Wetlands car park. Time spent in nature is good for all of our wellbeing no matter what age. This place combines fun with learning in the great outdoors. We love it and easily fill a whole day with a visit! London Wetland Centre.

7. Gunnersbury Park

Gunnersbury ParkA fairly big park with a museum, two playgrounds, a pond and a lake, lots of wide open space… a cafe and outdoor seating area. The thing I particularly like is the bigger playground has two sections – one for younger children and then another bigger section for older children. They also have a golf course and may do crazy golf (check that!). Worth a visit. Gunnersbury Park.

8. Diamond Jubilee Gardens Twickenham

Children’s playground, large sandpit, cafe… we usually go to the gardens and then walk along the river stopping for an ice cream. Diamond Jubilee Gardens Twickenham.

9.  45 Minute Boat Trip from Richmond to Teddington Lock & Back

Boat Trip Richmond TeddingtonDepending on the age of the children something a little bit different is a local boat trip. We find the one to Teddington Lock and back just long enough for the children not to get too restless! You can get the boat just along the riverside not far from the Town Hall. If you wanted to do a longer boat trip they have other options (as does Kew Pier too). Turk Launches or The River Thames Guide. Also after your boat trip if you walk over Richmond Bridge and along on the left hand-side you will come to a nice playground and cafe. The thing I love most about Richmond Borough playgrounds is they seem to be more equipped with equipment suitable for a wheelchair or an adapted swing for example (my nephew is in a wheelchair).

10. Brentford Festival

Brentford FestivalJust when the children have gone back to school or are heading back to school… Brentford Festival takes place (always the 1st Sunday in September). It used to be in Boston Manor Park but moved and is now in Blondin Park (further along Boston Manor Road). So much to see and do at the festival, a big local community event… well worth a visit. I always think of it as the last ‘hoorah’ before school swings in! Brentford Festival.

So many great places locally… enjoy them and have a fabulous summer.”


These ideas came to you courtesy of Sunny Day Photography, who you can follow on Facebook and Twitter. You can view the original blog article here.


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