The October school holidays, it’s raining again – but the kids needn’t be bored. The city council is offering some ideas on how to keep the little dears happy during the holidays:
From ghoulish arts and crafts workshops at Lauriston Castle and Edinburgh’s Libraries, to spooky storytelling on the Royal Mile, there is something to thrill all members of the family.
Councillor Richard Lewis, Culture and Sport Convener, said: “Falling just 10 weeks before Christmas – and not long after the summer break – the need to keep the kids amused during the October holidays can be hard to budget for. But in Edinburgh, families really are spoilt for choice.
“Whether you are looking for a low cost scare factor this Halloween, or visiting one of the city’s attractions for the first time; make sure you check what’s on at Edinburgh’s public libraries, museums, parks and sports facilities to find something to suit.”
Top five things to do at Edinburgh’s public attractions and parks
1) In the city’s haunting Old Town, take a visit to the Museum of Edinburgh which is housed in beautifully restored 16th Century buildings on the Canongate.
This October, the museum will be home to a host of storytelling events, as the 2014 Storytelling Festival kicks off once more. The museum programme features war tales and songs based on Sir Walter Scott, and older children and young adults will also enjoy hearing about gruesome moments from Auld Reekie’s past from Scotland’s Storyteller, Calum Lykan on Sunday 31 October.
2) For even more tall tales, the City’s community libraries will be open for a number of spooky events including a 1950s classic horror double bill of ‘The Fly’ and ‘Invaders from Mars’ at the Drumbrae Library Hub which will also be hosting a 1950s-themed fancy dress competition.
For younger movie fans, pay a visit to the Museum of Childhood, which will be hosting a drop-in craft event on Wednesday 15 October to tie in with Making Movies, the museum’s new exhibition all around movie making. Children can make their own spinning card animations (thaumatropes), and Scottish Screen Archive curator Emily Munro will be on hand to talk about the history of movie-making.
3) But what if the crisp Autumn weather makes you want to get outdoors? After winning a prestigious Entente Florale Gold Award for beautiful green spaces, where better to enjoy time off than by visiting one of Edinburgh’s 140 parks.
Children who aren’t afraid of creepy crawlies will love helping to build B&Bs for beasties at the Hermitage of Braid Local Nature Reserve as it prepares to home insects for the winter on Sunday 19 October. Or why not join in the Great Saughton Park Bear Hunt on Thursday 16 October in the Winter Gardens, where 30 bears will be hidden in the gardens.
There’s no better time to conquer the 287 steps to the top than this October, which marks 100 years since Sir Walter’s publication of ‘Waverley’. Equally impressive is the Nelson Monument on Calton Hill.
5) The beautiful grounds of Lauriston Castle, laid out by William Henry Playfair in the 1840s, are also well worth a wander – especially if the family wants to get in the mood for Halloween. The Castle will be offering spooky woodland trails, craft classes to create ghoulish globes and window decorations, which can be booked at the Museums and Galleries website.
If you are looking for something crafty to do in the centre of town, an alternative spot is the City Art Centre‘s new ‘ArtSpace’, which allows children to have fun experimenting with different art materials during normal gallery opening times.
There must be something in that little lot to keep the kids amused? Enjoy the holidays!