Spooks, skates and scares
Over 20 fun things for your kids (and you) to do over over October half term and Halloween
The Street, Shepton Mallet Prison, Shepton Mallet, dates from Thurs 18 Oct
The zombie apocalypse comes to Somerset. Immersive scare/horror maze for 12 years+. Walk the ‘The Street’, attack the zombies, learn how to become a warrior in Battle Archery and walk through a rope maze. Eek.
Icescape at the Tropicana, Weston-super-Mare, Fri 19 Oct – Sun 6 Jan
Send the kids off onto the ice at the UK’s largest covered ice rink. There’s a giant snow slide too. Food for all from the Bare Grills Smokehouse and booze for you in The Lodge. Sessions start on the hour. Free skating (and displays from British skating champs) on opening night (Thurs 18 Oct).
Week of the Dead Fiesta, American Museum and Gardens, Claverton, Sat 20 – Sun 29 Oct
Family trail around newly opened gardens and workshops all week in celebration of the Mexican festival Day of the Dead. We like the sound of the sugar skull decorations.
The Great British Autumn and Ghost Tours, Longleat House, nr Warminster, Sat 20 Oct – Sun 4 Nov
Join a spine-chilling tour of Longleat House through unseen cellars, eerie attics and dark corridors, whilst sharing haunting tales of Longleat’s legendary past. Rumour has it that the Grey Lady, Lady Louisa Carteret – wife of the 2nd Viscount – still wanders the House in search for her murdered lover.
Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2018, M Shed, Bristol, Sat 20 – Sun 24 Feb 2019
Blow their minds with amazing animal photos like this (then they can go home and take pix of the dog). The annual exhibition showcases the world’s best wildlife photographers.
Awful Auntie, Theatre Royal Bath, Tues 23 – Sat 27 Oct
David Walliams’ thrilling, scary and hilarious tale hilariously (and surprisingly) inspired by Stanley Kubrick’s 80s horror film The Shining starring Jack Nicholson. Here’s Auntieeeee! Read our review.
Yana and the yeti, the egg, Bath, Thurs 25 – Sun 28 Oct
One for little ‘uns age 5+, this is a super-cute musical puppet show from the always-reliable egg theatre. Yana is far from home and all alone in a mysterious snowy land, surrounded by dense forest. But she soon discovers friends come from the most unlikely places.
Bath Museums Week, around Bath and North East Somerset, Sat 27 Oct – Sun 4 Nov
Events and activities at Bath’s many museums and attractions, try Korean drumming, go fossil hunting on a coal heap, taste a real Sally Lunn bun or choose something else from this list of events.
The Gorge of Mysteries, Cheddar Gorge, Cheddar, Sat 27 Oct – Sun 4 Nov
Help solve a mystery with some Victorian detectives (Sherlock and Watson’s younger sisters?) down in the prehistoric caves, and discover Frankenstein’s monster, Dracula and Dorian Gray along the way.
Children are Stinky, Merlin Theatre, Frome, Mon 29 Oct
The Edinburgh Fringe hit show from Circus Trick Tease, with dare devil stunts, incredible acrobatics, lighting fast hula hoops and a nostalgic mash-up that works for adults and kids alike.
Fossil Hunt, Writhlington Batch, Radstock, Mon 29 Oct
Somerset use to be a mining county, so how about finding fossil insects on a coal batch (spoil heap)? Bring your own, small, hammer.
Whale Rider, Westlands, Yeovil, Mon 29 Oct
A young Maori girl dreams of becoming the chief of her people but no one else thinks it’s a suitable job for a girl (she proves them wrong, of course). The film’s accompanied by a creative upcycling workshop run by the brilliant Bootmakers of Wincanton. They’re offering a £15 Bootmakers gift voucher for the best collage on the day. Book via Westlands or call 01835 422884.
The Little Mix Experience, The Brewhouse, Taunton, Tues 30 Oct
Apparently they look and sound just like the famous girl band (I wouldn’t know). Meet and greet after the show.
Wild Academy night time special, Secret World Wildlife Rescue, Highbridge, Tues 30 Oct
Prowl around countryside paths in the dark, spot nocturnal animals, toast marshmallows and sip hot choc.
Sleepyhead, Weston Studio, Bristol Old Vic, Bristol, Tues 30 Oct – Sat 3 Nov
One of the world’s best puppet companies, the Little Angel Theatre, comes to the Old Vic’s brand new Weston Studio, with their tale of a naughty little baby and a very sleepy father.
Monkey World, Monkey World, Wareham, Weds 31 Oct
Dress the kids up in full Halloween fancy dress to get in free Weds 31 Oct. The Kid’s Activity Centre is open throughout half-term with spooky sand art, creepy crafts and a terrifying trail to keep the little ones entertained, and make sure you visit their spider monkeys, who’ll prove that not all spiders are scary!
The Spooky Ship, Brunel’s SS Great Britain, Bristol, Weds 31 Oct – Sat 3 Nov
Dare to go aboard the SS Great Britain when ghosts are roaming? The true story of Capt Gray who disappeared from his ship in the middle of the night leaving behind the crew and his bereft family. In collaboration with the Bristol Old Vic and brilliant special effects from a team headed up by Oscar and BAFTA-winning and fashion designers. Age 8+
Spooky specials, East Somerset Railway, Weds 31 Oct
Spiders and skeletons, ghosts and cobwebs in the Halloween carriage and spooky station. Kids in Halloween fancy dress get a free ticket.
Museum of Rural Life, Glastonbury, Weds 31 Oct – Sat 3 Nov
Small and perfectly formed museum with fascinating displays about Somerset life of yesteryear, with kids’ arts and crafts activities inspired by the collection throughout the half term. While you’re there, check out the exhibition about the history of facial hair and tattoos.
Have we missed anything out? Let us know at email@example.com or write a comment in the box below…