Worcestershire’s Essential Entertainment Guide
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FACT. The Midlands is home to some of the finest tourist attractions in the UK. From adrenaline-fuelled visits to theme parks and culture fixes at museums & art galleries, to action-packed days out at adventure farms and fun educational experiences at heritage sites, the region boasts plenty of fabulous places to visit and brilliant activities to enjoy.
National Tourism Week is this year taking place from 22 to 31 May, so why not show your support for our wonderful local attractions by heading along and having some fun...
Here’s our pick of the best…
WEST MIDLAND SAFARI PARK
Spring Grove Rd, Bewdley, Kidderminster DY12 1LF
West Midland Safari Park offers a great opportunity to enjoy seeing animals roaming freely - and to do so from the safety of your own car! The 100-acre venue is home to a variety of exotic and unusual species, many of which you’re sure to encounter during the course of the four-mile drive-through safari. Expect to see elephants, rhinos, giraffes, lions, wallabies, tigers, emus, camels, zebras, gnus, elands, ankole cattle, yaks, przewalski’s horses, Asian buffaloes, wolves, llamas and all manner of antelope!
The site is also the home to the UK's UK’s largest animatronic Dinosaur attraction Land of the Living Dinosaurs, an adventure theme park and an Ice Age trail.
To guarantee entry, pre-booking tickets is advised, visit wmsp.co.uk to book yours.
SEVERN VALLEY RAILWAY
At the following stations; Kidderminster - DY10 1QX, Bewdley – DY12 1DP and Bridgnorth – WV16 5DT
A full-size standard-gauge heritage line running along the Severn Valley from Bridgnorth to Kidderminster, the Severn Valley Railway follows the course of the River Severn for the majority of its 16-mile route and runs regular, mainly steam-hauled passenger trains.
Choose your journey and travel in a private compartment or reserved table seats as you steam through the Severn Valley with family and friends.
To guarantee travel, pre-booking is advised and is available up until 3.30pm the day before travel, visit svr.co.uk to find out more.
AVONCROFT MUSEUM OF HISTORIC BUILDINGS
Stoke Heath, Bromsgrove, B60 4JR
Spread over 19 acres of Worcestershire countryside, England’s first open-air museum covers in excess of 700 years of Midlands history.
The site includes a collection of 20-plus historic buildings, ranging in date from Worcester Cathedral’s 14th century Guesten Hall roof, to a post-Second World War Birmingham prefab.
Visitors to Avoncroft can also enjoy a wildflower meadow, period gardens and a traditional cider & perry orchard. And if checking out the aforementioned attractions works up an appetite, the museum also boasts an award-winning tearoom, complete with a selection of cakes and light lunches made with fresh, local produce (some of which comes from the venue’s very own period gardens).
Book your tickets to Avoncroft at avoncroft.org.uk/product/2021-tickets
ARLEY ARBORETUM & GARDENS
Lion Lane, Upper Arley, Worcestershire DY12 1SQ
Go back in time and watch the Severn Valley Railway trains steam across the hill from one of the magnificent signposted walks. The garden provides the ideal day out for you and your family, a dream escape from the bustle of everyday life.
The Arboretum offers plenty to do for all ages from the Italian garden with its fountain, to the Themed Trails and maze. The Peacocks are also a splendid sight wandering around the gardens.
Advance booking is essential due to limits on visitor numbers, head to arleyarboretum.digitickets.co.uk to book.
109 Sidbury, Worcester, WR1 2HU
Encounter the past brought to life in a beautiful building with an 800 year history. Set in the heart of historic Worcester, The Commandery is most famous for being the Royalist Headquarters during the deciding battle of the English Civil War – the Battle of Worcester 1651.
The Commandery is the perfect place for a family day out – get to know your fearsome weapons, get stuck into our historic displays or become a Commandery explorer in their gardens.
WITLEY COURT & GARDENS
Worcester Rd, Droitwich Spa, Droitwich WR6 6JT
Explore the dramatic ruins of Witley Court and travel back to a world of lavish house parties. Learn the stories behind the people who once lived and partied here, from servants to royal visitors. Discover elaborate parterre gardens and monumental fountains then find your way through enchanting woodland to the unique adventure play area.
Advance booking is essential due to limits on visitor numbers, head to english-heritage.org.uk/visit/places/witley-court-and-gardens to book.
GO APE WYRE FOREST
Go Ape Wyre Forest, Callow Hill, Bewdley DY14 9XQ
Wyre Forest is a large, semi-natural woodland and forest which straddles the borders of Worcestershire and Shropshire. Go Ape in one of Britain's largest remaining ancient forest, and take in the sights and smells of the statuesque oak and fir trees that line the course.
Enjoy two to three hours in the trees taking on zip wires, Tarzan swings, rope ladders and a variety of obstacles and crossings in the Treetop Challenge or little ones can enjoy the Treetop Adventure with intricate crossings, wobbly bridges and zip wire rides.
Pre-booking is strongly advised due to limited group sizes, find out more and book your tickets at goape.co.uk/locations/wyre
ALL THINGS WILD
Station Rd, Honeybourne, Evesham WR11 7QZ
All Things Wild is an all-weather, year round family attraction and allow people of all ages to enjoy the amazing things that nature can bring, whatever the weather. They offer diverse range of activities that suit all ages, whilst the animals are in an environment that is as close to their natural habitat as possible.
Pre-booking is essential, find out more at allthingswild.co.uk
In less than a 90-minute drive time from Worcester, you'll come across these great attractions...
BLISTS HILL VICTORIAN TOWN
Legges Way, Ironbridge, TF7 5UD
One of 10 award-winning museums that make up the Ironbridge Gorge Museum Trust, Blists Hill Victorian Town offers visitors the chance to step back in time to the days of Queen Victoria. Set over 52 acres, the museum has plenty to offer and is very much an interactive experience.
There are general drapers, blacksmiths, a pharmacy (also home to a particularly gruesome dentist room) and the bank, where you can exchange your new money for old and try to manage with pounds, shillings and pence.
Thankfully Victorians liked food & drink just as much as we do(!) - so if you’re feeling peckish, pay a visit to the fried fish dealer and enjoy traditionally cooked fish & chips. Alternatively, pop into the New Inn - not only does it serve a fine ale, it also has a tearoom upstairs with some healthier-eating options.
Blists Hill has a funfair, too - complete with carousel, chair-o-planes and game stalls - a funicular train and a clay mine ride to enjoy.
New for 2021: An exciting outdoor adventure experience with elevated walkways, a log-style basket swing, seesaw and lookout tower with a coal chute slide.
Pre-booking is advised, visit ironbridge.org.uk
ROYAL AIR FORCE MUSEUM COSFORD
Shifnal, Shropshire TF11 8UP
Telling the story of aviation history and housing one of the largest collections of its kind in the UK, RAF Cosford is home to more than 70 historic aircraft displayed in three wartime hangars on an active airfield.
The museum’s other attractions include the interactive National Cold War Exhibition - which tells the story of the Cold War while highlighting the ideologies of both sides - and a collection entitled The War In The Air - an examination of the role of British, German and Japanese aircraft in the development of aviation.
Virtual tours, fun’n’flight hands-on activities and dedicated conservation and exhibition areas further add to the venue’s impressive offer.
Booking is essential, head to rafmuseum.org.uk to find out more.
NATIONAL FOREST ADVENTURE FARM
Tatenhill, Burton-upon-Trent, Staffordshire, DE13 9SJ
This family-run attraction provides 40 acres of safe outdoor space and comes complete with a nine-acre maize maze to explore.
Visitors can take a stroll around the outdoor paddocks and barns, get ‘up close and personal’ with a range of animals, or hop on board a tractor for a ride around the site.
There are plenty of animal demonstrations to check out, too - everything from pony grooming to egg collecting - as well as a host of other attractions to enjoy, including pedal go-karts, crazy golf, water splash-out and a JCB Big Dig Zone.
Prebooking is essential to visit National Forest Adventure Farm, book your tickets at adventurefarm.co.uk
HOO ZOO AND DINOSAUR WORLD
Hadley, Telford TF6 6DJ
Formally known as Hoo Farm Animal Kingdom, the award-winning attraction will reopen this Easter with some new prehistoric residents, 15 full size moving dinosaurs and ancient beasts in their brand-new Hoo-Rassic World.
The site is also home to a menagerie of creatures, including owls, binturong, racoons, skunks, badgers, lizards, snakes, lemurs, meerkats and alpaca, and boasts 32 acres of woodland and paddocks.
To book your tickets for Hoo Zoo and Dinosaur World, head to hoofarm.com
BLACK COUNTRY LIVING MUSEUM
Tipton Rd, Dudley DY1 4SQ
Get stuck into some old-school fun at the Black Country Living Museum this summer holiday. The award-winning venue boasts more than 30 period shops and houses to explore, while a host of famous characters help bring the region’s fascinating history to life.
Visitors can also participate in some deceptively simple old-school street games outside the back-to-backs and learn their ABCs backwards in an authentic Edwardian school lesson.
Pay for one visit and the museum will give you a BCLM UnChained Annual Pass valid for 12 months.
Prebooking is essential, book your tickets to Black Country Living Museum at bclm.co.uk
Castle Hill, Dudley DY1 4QF
As well as being home to 1,300 animals and nearly 200 species, the 83-year-old Dudley Zoological Gardens also features an 11th century castle, limestone caverns, 12 Grade-2 listed Tecton buildings and the country’s only vintage chairlift.
Much of the animal collection is linked to international conservation and breeding programmes.
Endangered species in evidence at the venue include Asiatic lions, Sumatran tigers, Bornean orangutans, Tibetan red pandas, Rothschild giraffes, Madagascan lemurs and the UK’s largest parent-reared colony of Humboldt penguins.
Pre-booking is essential to ensure social distancing, to find out more and to book your tickets, visit dudleyzoo.org.uk
HIMLEY HALL & PARK
Himley Rd, Himley, Dudley DY3 4DF
Set in 180 acres of grounds the original manor - belonging to the Earl of Dudley - was demolished to make way for the 'new' hall which still stands today. Within the grounds is situated a great lake which is fed from a selection of waterfalls, taken from smaller pools. The park is now visited by over 200,000 visitors each year. To find out more, visit himleyhallandpark.co.uk
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