As a family we are relatively new to the whole bowling thing, but were pretty surprised when our oldest produced a competitive spirit which we weren't aware existed in her, when at a bowling party a few months ago. There is a bowling alley in the Tunbridge Wells retail park, it's worth a shot on a rainy day. They have a cafe there so you can buy hot chips, and did you know you no longer have to wear bowling shoes (any flat shoes are fine) so you don't have to worry about your children proving tricky when produced with a pair of shoes they don't want to wear. Fabulous.
Check out Bowlplex's site here...
If you're going to get wet outside you may as well get completely soaked. Tonbridge Pool is fab for families, or there is Sevenoaks pool or Larkfield Leisure Centre which is a little further afield but is bigger with a slide and a soft play attached.
My spell check says trampolining isn't actually a word, but I'm sure it is... anyway, there are now these fabulous trampolining mega play places which have popped up, one in Maidstone and one in Thurrock. They could have actually been there for years but i've only just discovered them so am spreading the word. By all accounts they are like halls of small trampolines attached together so you can just bounce for hours, burn off the cake you had in the cafe, and have a bit of fun. I'll definitely be trying these out when I can book a slot (they are pretty popular, book ahead).
Thurrock's trampoline place is here
Ok so a trip here won't exhaust your little ones, but it's indoors, it's free and it's sort of educational, so that's three good things. I have a secret love for libraries, and am trying to spread the joy to my kids, so we frequently pop in to our local one. Plus sometimes they have free events for kids too, especially in the holidays, so worth a look.
5. Soft Play
The obvious wet weather choice. Personally I try to avoid like the plague as they are generally freezing cold, a bit grimy and very soulless, but the kids LOVE going there and it provides a place where they can run around a lot and do a few daredevil things like going down those terrifying almost vertical slides which always makes me feel pretty proud as you'd never get me doing that. In Tonbridge there's Wear M Out, of course, and further afield Manic Monsters in Edenbridge and I'm sure loads of others I'm yet to discover. Good luck.
6. The Theatre
Worth having a look at what's on locally... The Trinity Theatre in Tunbridge Wells has The Adventures of Pinocchio on Sunday 14th Feb (click here) and there are still tickets available.
7. Crafting at Home
Makes me sound like one of those awesome mums, but actually crafting at home is pretty easy and super cheap if you go along to a 99p store or similar and buy up some of their produce. They generally have bags of stickers, googly eyes, paper and card, pipe cleaners and other wondrous things to explode all over your kitchen table and eventually just end up on the floor, but crafting uses up an exponential amount of time in our house and the kids always seem pretty happy when I produce a bag of stuff for them to go mad with. Just try not to think about the clean up operation afterwards...
8. Climbing walls
My two are a bit young for this still, but I am weirdly looking forward to the time when we can go to a climbing wall. I'm not sure why, but I think it sounds great. There is one near to Tunbridge Wells which it says is good for anyone over 5, although does come with the rather scary disclaimer on its website:
Bouldering is a dangerous activity with an inherent risk of personal injury or death.
But don't let that put you off.
The Odeon are doing these great cheap tickets for children throughout half term for Hotel Transylvania and The Good Dinosaur. Definitely worth a look.
10. Godstone Farm
Godstone is actually great year round as it has an indoor play barn, so when you've got a bit soaked looking at the piglets and ducks and ploughing through the dinosaur bit, you can dry off inside for a while.
Website is here
Have a great half term!