The Jurassic Coast

Jurassic Coast

Excited by the prospect of fossils and rock formations our Easter road trip took us in our shiny Campervan “Ruby” to the Jurassic Coast – which spans Dorset and Devon in the South of England.

VW Camper-tastic

Now that we have Ruby we weren’t afraid of camping so early in the season and booked into the fantastic Hook Farm camp site in Uplyme, near Lyme Regis. Despite the slightly soggy ground (we had to be pulled out of the mud by the tractor) the site was quite busy with campervans, tourers and a few hardy canvas campers. It’s a lovely quiet small site, suitable for young families and adults and I would definitely recommend it.

Fossil hunting

I’m disappointed that neither of my children are the type to spend hours beach-combing as once they had found their first fossils they thought that was ‘job done’ and time to get an ice cream! There were fossil hunters everywhere, but plenty for everyone to find as the photo below shows.

Ammonite Fossil
An Ammonite Fossil I found

Branscombe Beach

Branscombe hit the headlines a few years ago when a cargo ship lost some containers which were washed up on Branscombe Beach and looted by the public. The beach was idyllic on sunny Easter Monday with the kids diverting a stream or relaxing on the pebbles. A short walk away in Branscombe village is the National Trust Old Bakery tea room which served the perfect cream tea!

Cream Tea!
Cream Tea!

Seafood

So food features quite highly in my list of holiday essentials and we weren’t disappointed at the Good Food Store or the Harbour Inn where the kids put away an adult meal each! The mussels were the largest I have ever seen and the choice of seafood was fantastic.

Scenery

The South West Coast Path runs the length of the Jurassic Coast. We walked sections of it most days, and whilst hilly it provides ever-changing scenery and breathtaking views of the coastline. From Charmouth you can walk up to Golden Cap, which is the highest point in Southern England.

South West coast path
South West coast path

Happy travels!

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Easter Egg Treasure Hunt

Easter Egg Treasure Hunt

I love the idea of the traditional Easter Egg hunt for kids, but somehow it always seemed to rain when we wanted to do it outside, and in any case the idea of putting chocolate eggs near mud and slugs makes me shiver.

Instead I devised two variations of Easter Egg treasure hunts that can be played inside or out, depending on the weather and the amount of space you have available! The second one comes with a free clue sheet ready for you to use.

1. Plastic Egg hunt

For the first version of this game I used plastic eggs hidden around the home and garden. They come in lots of bright colours and can be bought cheaply in kits from pound shops. Sometimes they come apart to hide things in, but other versions are just solid plastic. Either works well, but egg shapes cut out of card work too if you don’t want to go to the expense of buying a load of plastic eggs.

Preparation: Get the children otherwise occupied (eg in decorating their Easter bonnets or some other Easter themed activity) whilst you scatter the eggs around. I hide them in plant pots, behind leaves and up in trees, all within easy reach of little ones. Just remember how many you have hidden or you won’t know when the game is over!

How to play: The idea of the game is to collect as many eggs as you can until they are all gone. The children can race off into the hunt area and collect eggs into their baskets. Ours tend to get quite competitive but love discovering eggs hidden behind pots or garden gnomes! This game avoids having chocolate sitting in soil or being accidentally left out in the garden!

And the winner is: The person with the most eggs when no more can be found. The reward can be whatever you like – everyone gets the same goody-bag; winner gets a bigger prize, or they can trade in their plastic eggs for the same number of mini eggs – it’s up to you!

Easter Egg Treasure Hunt
And the winner is…

2. Easter Egg Treasure Hunt

This is my favourite, but it takes a bit more preparation. This is a treasure hunt with written clues hidden around the house and garden, leading them from one clue to the next. You can hide the clues inside plastic egg shapes or print them onto the back of egg-shaped cards.

Preparation: Use my template document below to create your clues. I’ve given you 30+ clues to get you started, but you will need to adapt these to suit your home and garden.  The final clue will bring them to the hoard of eggs, or whatever you determine your big prize to be!  Once you are happy with your clues print them off twice and cut up one sheet into separate clues.

The most important thing to remember is that when you are laying your clues out that you need to do the treasure hunt BACKWARDS! So, in my example from the clue sheet, you would start at the toy box, where you would hide your big prize, then put the toybox clue at the pink chair, the pink chair clue under the child’s pillow etc.

You can hide the clues inside plastic eggs if you want to keep the Easter theme going strong!

How to play: Start the children off by giving them the first clue and ask them to solve it together. When they have guessed the answer they go there together to find the next clue. Our children took it in turns to read out and try to solve the clue regardless of who found the egg.

And the winner is: Everyone wins as they should get to the final location at the same time. If you use a toybox or cupboard as the last place then you can create a buzz by hiding balloons or confetti there, that will fall out when they open the door and find their Easter goodies waiting for them!

You can download my Easter Egg Treasure Hunt clues here.

 

Easter chick
Happy Easter!