30+ Things to Do this May Half Term 2017

30+ Things to do in May Half Term - loads of ideas for May Half term activities for all the family.

Image Credit: Annie Spratt

May Half Term week falls on the week which begins with the Spring Bank Holiday (Whitsun Holiday) on Monday 29th May.

School holidays may vary so always double check your children's school holiday dates before booking anything.

Related: Last Minute Breaks for May Half Term

  1. The Fal River Festival 2017 held in Falmouth, Cornwall runs for 10 days from 26th May to Sunday 4th June. The 10-day festival includes music and drama, the arts and heritage to gig racing, swimming, walking and lots more.
  2. Petrolheads will love Truckfest South at Newbury Showground, Newbury. It is the festival for big wheels and bigger engines - with high-flying motorcycle and monster truck stunt showcases, family fun and games, a chance to ride in some of the amazing vehicles on show and to get-up-close and personal with all the different trucks. Get your discounted tickets at Little Bird
  3. Heading off to the Cinema? Find out what's on at the cinema this May Half Term for Kids.
  4. The National Trust properties across the UK will be holding events over Half Term, so check out your local venus for events, incuding lots of way to tick items off your 50 things to do before you're 11 ¾ list.
  5. EXLON - Art Exhibitions London have a brilliant collection of kids activities for May Half Term - many of London's museums and galleries are running imaginative and fun activities for the May Half Term that involve drawing and painting, stories and performances, designing and crafting workshops. And better still, most of them are FREE! Venues include The Bank of England Museum, British Museum, Geffrye Museum, Horniman Museum, Museum of London, National Gallery and National Portrait Gallery - these museums are all offering a daily programme of activities during the holiday week.
  6. In Cornwall join a celebration of game playing at Eden Project. From retro classics and traditional playground favourites, to the latest tech, there's something to get all members of the family competing, debating and having fun! 
  7. If you are near Wiltshire the Salisbury Festival is running from 26 May to 10 June 2017, and half term events include a performance of The Emperor's New Clothes by Illyria Theatre, the family friendly Salisbury Live: Live at the Farm festival and City Encounters, a two-day programme of free street entertainment for everyone that will fill every corner of the city centre.
  8. If you are near Henley the River & Rowing Museum have an exhibition running until 4th June called Clangers, Bagpuss & Co. Parents of a certain age will love it even if the kids have NO idea who Noggin the Nog or Ivor the Engine are....
  9. Glasgow's National Museum of Rural Life is running a Woolly Weekend on 3 Jun - 4 Jun 2017, with a host of woolly themed activities and crafts at the museum.
  10. Elmer Day is celebrated on 27th May in 2017, and events will be happening in bookshops and libraries all over the UK throughout half term week, including crafts, storytelling and games.
  11. Get out and about with your pooch (or borrow one for the day!) and try one of the 10 Best Dog Walks in Britain
  12. Museums and Art Galleries, all over the UK will be hosting children's events over Half Term. Contact your local one to find out what is going on, as events will take place over local school holidays only. Lots of the events will be free or require only a small charge to cover materials.
  13. CadburyWorld have lots of half term activites planned, including magicians, ventriloquists and more.
  14. Illuminasia in Blackpool's Winter Gardens is a walk-through experience, combining ancient Chinese tradition with modern production; this awe-inspiring display has a play of light and colour, artists of every medium gain inspiration from this beautiful Far Eastern art form. Delight in the adventure of exploring a garden filled with towering exotic flowers and giant butterflies,and enjoy the serenity of time spent in the Jade Palace . Book now
  15. Download your free printable School Holiday Half Term Planner

  16. Sealife has attractions across the UK.  Every centre gives you a chance to look into the magical world beneath our seas and offers hands-on encounters for all ages with everything from humble shrimps and starfish to seahorses, sharks and stingrays. 
  17. The Art of the Brick

  18. The Art of the Brick: DC Superheroes Exhibition runs all through the May Half Term week at London's South Bank Centre in a purpose built tent. The exhibition uses nearly 2,000,000 bricks to create large-scale sculptures of the most popular Super Heroes and Super Villains from the world of DC Comics. From Batman to Wonder Woman, from Superman to The Joker and Harley Quinn. Book Now
  19. Related: Superheroes Free Printable Puzzles

  20. The Science Museum in London has an exhibition running from now until September on the subject of Robots. Suitable for ages 8+, Robots reveals the astonishing 500-year quest to make machines human and focuses on why they exist rather than on how they work.
  21. STAR WARS™ Identities is an exhibition which will be at the O2 exhibition centre until 3rd September 2017. Get to know the characters of STAR WARS™ on a whole new level and learn more about yourself in the process. Pick up your lightsaber - your adventure into identity awaits!
  22. Related: Star Wars Day Colouring Picture - Free Printable

  23. Got a head for heights? The View From The Shard will once more be running it's Kids Go Free offer this half term. A full paying adult can take up to 2 kids (age 4-15) for free.
  24. Milton Keynes Museum have lots of half term activities planned, along with playing music the way the Victorians did, attending classes in the Victorian schoolroom, making hot buttered toast over the range, brass-rubbing, taking a seat in the stocks,  sending morse code and much, much more.
  25. Still in London, the Discover Children's Story Centre has a host of book-related fun. They currently have a special exhibition on The Fantastic World of Dr. Seuss and a whole host of events for May Half Term - some require advance booking.
  26. And if you pop along to the V & A on Thursday 1st June you can see their Pop-up Performance BSL Event, a playful and interactive performance as two best friends come together to create their own Music Festival! Free, just drop in.
  27. In Northern Ireland, the WWT's Castle Espie is running a Top Trumps Trail from Sat 29 April to Sun 4 June. When you arive you'll be given a Top Trumps card and score card - the aim of the game is to compare the animal scores on your card against giant cards to win!
  28. Staying Indoors

  29. Make your own Playdough from ingredients that you will already have stored in the kitchen.
  30. Don't let the kids brains get rusty over half term with our free printable Wordsearches and Anagrams.
  31. Latest Kids DVD releases for May 2017 - Sing, Monster Trucks and A Monster Calls

  32. Catch up with the latest New Family DVD Releases this May, including Sing and Monster Trucks.
  33. Try some retro fun and teach the kids to make a pillow fort.
  34. Make paper planes. Visit Alex's Paper Planes for designs. You could use junk mail or all those notes they send home from school at the end of term for a greener twist on the activity.
  35. Join Harry Potter and Ron Weasley and learn to play chess. It's a great way to develop thinking and strategy skills, and who knows when you may find yourself in a dungeon under a wizard school looking for a stone.......
  36. Teach the kids a useful skill that you will have for life with our 7 Tips for Teaching Kids to Knit (or find a crafty friend who can help) then get the kids knitting.
  37. Catch up on some classic kids books with these 20 Children's Classics that You Can Download for FREE Now. Everything from Alice's Adventures in Wonderland and Treasure island to Heidi, The Jungle Book and Little Women.
  38. I can hear the groans from here, but some kids may just have some revision to do.....

Related: The UK's Top Farm Parks

30+ Things to Do for May Half Term

About the Author: Jacqui O'Brien is the Editor of eParenting.

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