There are a number of great outdoor places in our neck of the woods and Rufford Abbey Country Park is one of them. It’s located off the A614 near Edwinstowe in Nottinghamshire, a mere 20 minute drive for us. Despite it being literally on our doorstep we’ve never actually taken C there.
This weekend, our friends have had their niece visiting so on Saturday afternoon we decided to head to Rufford for an hour. Entry to the park, gardens & abbey is free, there’s just a £3 parking fee at weekends and daily throughout the school holidays.
There are 2 car parks, one is near a ford and the small lake, the other is near the abbey & parks. We parked at the lake one but it was only a 10 minute walk round to the park so not a big deal.
The park itself isn’t huge but is a little different to regular parks as rather than swings and slides it has a huge circle with tunnels and a separate ‘road’ around the edge so kids can play. It also has a little wooden climbing frame and a wooden ‘train’ to play on.
Next to the park is the children’s garden. It has a mini maze, things to make music with and a tree tunnel. Oh yes, and don’t forget the wooden snail.
We got there quite late in the afternoon so only stayed for about an hour but there’s enough there to keep you occupied for a lot longer. There are the ruins to walk around, a maze, sculptures, a restaurant & courtyard, woodland walks and there’s also a craft centre and gift shop.
There are wide open spaces great for picnics, football and kite flying and we also saw signposts for an ice house and animal graves which we’ll have to investigate next time we’re there.
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