Colchester’s Mercury Theatre brings a variety of fantastic shows to audiences of all ages. Lots of their productions are family friendly, and from Friday 18 to Sunday 20 February there’s an extra special visitor to the stage. Parents and kids alike will be delighted by the award-winning The Tiger Who Came To Tea, which is based on the best-selling book by Judith Kerr. Join Sophie and her mummy as they sit down to tea, only to find themselves hosting a hungry tiger who drinks all their tea and eats all their food! It’s a wonderful show, packed with magic, sing-along songs and chaos, and is suitable for ages three and above.
If you like learning about history, Colchester Castle is a great place to visit. With over 2,000 years of history to explore, you can discover the story of Roman and Norman conquest in Colchester, learn about the revolt of Queen Boudica, and more. Tour guides will take you from the Roman Vaults right up to the Castle roof, where you’ll enjoy fantastic views over the town. There are plenty of kids’ activities in Colchester Castle too, with opportunities to dress up in medieval costumes, steer a Roman chariot, try brass rubbing, and more.
Budding detectives have a new case to crack on the Colchester Mystery Treasure Trail. Top Roman specialist Ivor Togaron has met his fate in the local library – and someone is after his archaeological treasures! Can you track down the clues he has left around the town and discover who the culprit is? This self-guided walking trail starts at the Mercury Theatre, and the 2.5-mile loop takes around two hours to complete. The clues will send you to the Roman castle, into a street of 17th century cottages, and along the riverside. There’s also a text message service if you get stuck with the clues. Happy hunting!
Summertime sees families looking for outdoor activities in Colchester, and what better place to let off some steam than at Castle Park and Gardens? This little oasis in the centre of town has loads for kids, including an adventure playground with assault course equipment, crazy golf, and a boating lake. You can also take your own outdoor games to play, or simply have a leisurely picnic and enjoy the sunshine. In August, the Colchester Outdoor Film & Food Festival is held here, and is a fun day out for all the family.
If arts and crafts is more your scene, get messy at Blue Owl. Paint a vase or plate, take part in a clay workshop, or design your very own piggy bank, and take it home a few days later once it’s been fired in the kiln. There’s an on-site café where you can refuel between crafts too. If you’re feeling super arty, why not take a pottery kit home and see what else you can achieve?