Derbyshire Children's photographer

Of all the children’s holidays where finding an activity is difficult, Autumn Half Term can be the worst: the weather can be tricky and they’ve only just had between 6 and 8 weeks off!

But whether you’re ready or not, October half-term is here and you’re going to have to find some things to do because nothing invites mischief more than boredom.


Although going to the cinema is a lot more commonplace than it was a few years ago, there’s still something very exciting about going to the movies so grab the popcorn and escape for a few hours! Nationally, the films Pan, Hotel Transylvania 2 and Big Knights are due out this month, whilst some local cinemas are showing re-releases of family favourites so why not check out the schedule at your local multiplex.

In addition, many libraries and museums have small theatres where they have one off showings to coincide with the children’s holidays. These are often much cheaper and you’ve got more chance of seeing something they’ll definitely want to watch.


From large theatres with massive rolling programmes and travelling West End shows to smaller independent repertories, you’ll find that most theatres tend to have a programme to suit the children’s holidays. Shows such as Room on the Broom, The Tiger Who Came to Tea and The Paper Dolls are all travelling the country at the moment whilst Matilda, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory and Disney on Ice all have fixed shows at theatres in London and Birmingham. Why not go for a touch of culture and introduce the little ones to the world of the stage?

Theme Parks

This time of year is fantastic for theme parks. Alton Towers, Thorpe Park and Drayton Manor all have Halloween themed events (with Drayton Manor being a little more geared towards the younger children) and many have offers on allowing families to make the most of the season.


If the October weather isn’t kind, and there’s very little to do outside, swimming is a great way of spending time together and is great exercise for you and the children. Your local swimming baths might have a family offer or you could look further afield to find an indoor water park such as Stokes’ WaterWorld, The Sandcastle in Blackpool or Splashdown in Poole.

What’s on Locally?

Local businesses, stately homes, libraries and children’s centres (among others) are often the best places for finding exciting and budget friendly activities for children’s holidays. Obviously, the best way of finding these locally to you is to search for them in your own area but websites such as Tripomatic and Days out with the Kids are great resources.