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30 things to do in Dorset for Easter 2017

PUBLISHED: 14:42 27 March 2017 | UPDATED: 14:42 27 March 2017

Join in the fun on the Great Easter Egg Hunt © National Trust Images/Chris Lacey

Join in the fun on the Great Easter Egg Hunt © National Trust Images/Chris Lacey

©National Trust Images/Chris Lacey

Helen Stiles rounds up some fun things for families to do over the Easter holidays

6 THEATRE TREATS

Babe, The Sheep-Pig - 8-9 April

An enchanting family show, based on the classic novel comes alive with stunning puppetry and original music charting a piglet’s rise to become the world famous sheep-pig. Bournemouth Pavilion 0844 576 3000.


There and Back Again - 11 April

This show for older children and families is a real Easter treat. Inspired by The Odyssey, encounter giants, ghosts, Greeks and great adventure. Shows 11am & 2pm. Sherling Studio, Lighthouse Poole 01202 280000.


An Elephant in the Garden - 12 April

Adapted from War Horse creator Michael Morpurgo’s best-selling children’s novel set in 1945 Dresden, Germany. Lizzie, her mother and an elephant from the zoo, flee the Allied fire-bombing in the end-game of the Second World War. Shows 2.30pm & 7pm. Corn Exchange, Dorchester 01305 266926.


Egg and Spoon - 12 April

An interactive romp through the four seasons – aimed at 1-5 year olds - celebrating the wonders of nature. Shows 11am & 2pm. Sherling Studio, Lighthouse Poole 01202 280000.


Robin Hood - 14 & 22 April

Britain’s Got Talent Winner, George Sampson is Robin Hood, Dani Harmer (CBBC’s Tracy Beaker and Strictly Come Dancing) is Maid Marian in this swashbuckling, arrow-slinging, tights-wearing Easter panto! Shows 2pm & 6pm. 14 April: Weymouth Pavilion 01305 783225; 22 April: Bournemouth Pavilion 0844 576 3000.


The Tiger Who Came To Tea - 17 – 18 April

Based on Judith Kerr’s magical picture book, mayhem comes to the tea table when a big stripy tiger joins Sophie and her mummy for tea. Bournemouth Pavilion 0844 576 3000.


NATIONAL TRUST EASTER EVENTS

Studland - 7 – 23 April

Follow the Easter trail around the nature reserve and see the world through a bunny’s eyes 10am-3pm.


Kingston Lacy - 8 – 23 April

How many Easter eggs can you spot on this 1.5 mile route around the woodland walk? 10am-3pm


Golden Cap - 14 – 15 April

Hop along to Stonebarrow Hill for this self-led, Easter egg hunt starts at Stonebarrow shop. 11am-3pm


Easter Egg Hunts - 14 – 16 April

• Brownsea Island 10.30am – 4pm

• Clouds Hill, Wareham 11am – 4.30pm

• Hardy’s Cottage, High Bockhampton 11am – 4.30pm

• Max Gate, Dorchester 11am – 4.30pm

• Corfe Castle 10.30am – 4.30pm

Cost £2.50 per child. More on all events at nationaltrust.org.uk.


Medieval Archery at Corfe Castle - 8–13 April

The Wolfshead Bowmen set up a medieval encampment at Corfe Castle and demonstration hand-to-hand combat, archery, talks on the longbow and have-a-go sessions. 


Low Ropes & Archery Day - 10 April

Join the outdoor centre team for a session of archery or low ropes on Brownsea Island. Sensible clothing and sturdy footwear essential. Sessions 1pm & 2pm, pre-book 01202 707744 or book on the day. 


Pike & Shot at Corfe Castle - 14 - 23 April

Take a step into the world of King Stephen when Corfe Castle was under siege. Combat and skilled archery displays, talks on the longbow and have-a-go sessions. 


EASTER EGG HUNTS

Easter Trail at Moors Valley Country Park - 8 – 23 April

Buy a £1 trail card at the Visitors Centre between 10am – 3.30pm and go on a hunt through the forest to discover the Easter word and enter the prize draw. moors-valley.co.uk.


Easter Magic Shows - 11 April

Join Mervyn Cole, at midday & 2pm, for his Easter themed magic show at Wimborne Model Town. wimborne-modeltown.com.


Giant Easter Egg Hunt at Abbotsbury - Events happening 14-17 April

Find a golf tee and exchange it for a chocolate bunny. Find a golden horseshoe and win a giant chocolate Easter Egg. Also bouncy castle, face painting, and magic shows. abbotsbury-tourism.co.uk.


Alice in Wonderland Easter Egg Trail

The gardens at Forde Abbey are transformed into a fantasy landscape with elegant tea parties, a fretful white rabbit and the maddest of Hatters. fordeabbey.co.uk.


Easter at Lulworth Castle

Expect themed trails, egg hunts, crafts, bouncy castle, soft play for under 4s, crazy golf and, of course, white rabbits and Easter Eggs. You may even meet the Mad Hatter in the Castle whilst you’re exploring! lulworth.com/easter.


OTHER EASTER EVENTS

Mad Science Easter Holiday Camp - 10 – 13 April

Mad Science Wessex runs this hands-on Easter holiday camp at Trinity First School in Verwood. Ideal for 4 -11 year olds who like the idea of making slime, or are mad about machines! 10am – 3pm. Cost: £30 per day/child or £110 for 4 days. Booking essential wessex.madscience.org.


Children’s Mountain Biking - 10 & 13 April

Introduction to mountain biking for young children (8 – 9 years), using off road tracks and trails at Moors Valley Country Park & Forest led by qualified mountain bike instructors (9.30am – 12.30pm). Session on 13 April more advanced and suitable for 10 -11 years . Cost £15 per child. Booking essential 01425 480811 or moors-valley.co.uk.


Craft Academy at Dorset County Museum - 12 & 19 April

Free activities from 10.30am-12.30pm. Suitable for 5-11s, accompanied by an adult. dorsetcountymuseum.org.


Elephant Puppet Workshop - 13 April

Inspired by Michael Morpurgo’s story An Elephant in the Garden, create a moving elephant puppet in this workshop at Dorchester Town Hall. Runs 10am – midday. Suitable for 8 -14s. Cost £7/£5 for siblings. Booking 01305 266926.


Adventure Extravaganza at Lulworth - 14 – 17 April

Join the Lulworth Rangers at Lulworth Cove Visitor Centre for a whole host of energetic activities including off-road biking, archery and orienteering across the Estate. Call 01929400155 or visit lulworth.com/easter.


Roller Disco - 16 April

Get your skates on at the Roller Planet roller disco at Weymouth Pavilion. Sessions 2pm - 4pm/ 4.30pm - 6.30pm. Skates available to hire. Box office 01305 783225.


Easter Events at Brewery Square, Dorchester

Starting on Good Friday, Brewery Square hosts a 40 minute performance at 11am by Mr. Bloom in the Square, for all youngsters to get their Squiggle on. Win a meet and greet with Mr. Bloom on Brewery Square’s Facebook page by entering the ‘Welly Squiggle’ competition. Free Easter Egg Hunts around the square (10am - 4pm, Good Friday to Easter Monday) for children up to 15 years old. Pick up a form from the Concierge Office, hunt for the eggs and return the form for a free Easter prize. brewerysquare.com.


Fall down the rabbit hole at Russell-Cotes

The Russell-Cotes Art Gallery & Museum in Bournemouth has a jam packed schedule of Alice in Wonderland themed activities including crafts, trails, workshops, and competitions. Dress up as your favourite character, and come for a tea party, fight with a Jabberwocky, play croquet with flamingos and follow the Alice in Wonderland themed trail around the house and garden. Drop in events: 8, 11-13 & 18 – 20 April (10am -1pm). Visit russellcotes.com for more details.

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