Parenting Magazine

{#JanuaryJoy - Plan a Trip}

By Glasgow_mummy @glasgow_mummy
We were very kindly invited to have a day out in Falkirk & finally the day came around for our trip.It's not somewhere I've been before, either with or without the kids, and we'll definitely be going back.I had in my head that Falkirk would take ages to get to, but it's actually not that far.
We started at The Falkirk Wheel and the kids were excited about the 'giant robot'. The weather was a bit miserable but we were well prepared in our hats, gloves & wellies.
{#JanuaryJoy - plan a trip}Refusing to pose nicely for a photograph!
{#JanuaryJoy - plan a trip}Captured on the sly in between silly faces!
{#JanuaryJoy - plan a trip}Going through the tunnel!
After our boat tour, which lasted about an hour, we had lunch in the cafe.
The choice of food was good and everything was reasonably priced.
The kids had a lunch box each with 5 items (£3.95) and R & I had a baked potato each with cajun chicken (£4.95). R also had the soup, which was really good (£3.95). We also tried the chocolate muffins & they were yum! 
{#JanuaryJoy - plan a trip}Baked potato with cajun chicken and side salad
We then jumped back in the car & headed to Muiravonside Country Park (The Loan, Whitecross, EH49 6LW), which took about 30 minutes.
It wasn't signposted very well and we drove past the entrance when we arrived, having to reverse back along the road, but I've been told the signage will be improved over the coming weeks.
The park is massive (170 acres) and unfortunately we didn't have enough time to explore it properly. We did have a walk round the animals at Newparks Farm...plenty of chickens, ducks, geese, four large pigs, a horse, llamas, cows (which were hiding!), a bull, sheep, and a few donkeys. As well as the park, the farm is free to access. The forest walk reminded me of my own childhood & I'll definitely go back when the weather is warmer. The park also has a cafe.
I've been told that the River Avon Heritage Trail around the park past the historic Avon Aqueduct is a must-see.
{#JanuaryJoy - plan a trip}{Avon Aqueduct}
{#JanuaryJoy - plan a trip}Littlest enjoying the outdoors!
{#JanuaryJoy - plan a trip}The llamas
Our final stop was Callendar House, which was a 20 minute drive from Muiravonside. Admission to the house is free.
{#JanuaryJoy - plan a trip}{Callendar House}
The house is a short walk from the car park through the park (the kids play park, Callendar Castle, looks good fun) and upon arrival we headed straight to the tea rooms. We sat in the window and had a lovely view over the park. I had an earl gray tea and a scone, R had a coffee (Java, very strong) and a scone, the kids had a pot of hot chocolate and a chocolate biscuit. The tea was lovely, as was the scone but my portion of jam was a little measly and it would have been amazing with some clotted cream. We then explored the house, although it was near closing and so we didn't get to see all the exhibits.
{#JanuaryJoy - plan a trip}Chocolate biscuit was demolished quickly - thumbs up from the eldest :)
{#JanuaryJoy - plan a trip}Alex Frost exhibition at The Park Gallery. These dog beds have been digitally printed to look like nappies and baby wipes... meant to represent that to some owners, their dogs are like children.
We had a great day out in Falkirk and definitely recommend the places we visited. 
If, like me, you've not really investigated Falkirk before, then you'll also be excited to hear about The Helix which is newly opened. 
The Splash Playzone will be reopening in the Spring... it features 15 jets and 6 mist sprays!
{#JanuaryJoy - plan a trip}{Splash Playzone}
There's also the Helix Park with pathways round the lagoon, shingle beach and the Great Lawn. And in the summer the visitor center will open.
All in all, there's lots to see & do.
So, what do you reckon? Worth a visit? We think so!
{#JanuaryJoy - plan a trip}
{#JanuaryJoy - plan a trip}
{#JanuaryJoy - plan a trip}
We received a complimentary day trip to Falkirk including our tour on the Falkirk Wheel, lunch in the cafe and afternoon tea at Callendar House. Opinions, as always, are my own and are honest.

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