Salisbury Attractions for Children

(Salisbury, Wiltshire, England, UK)

A rather diverse city with many attractions of a historic nature, the Salisbury area does actually cater very well for families, particularly if you have a car. The local museums often feature activities to amuse and occupy the minds of children, and the City Hall regularly stages shows suitable for all of the family, with past performances including both the Chinese State Circus and the Little Big Club.

A trip to see some animals is always likely to be a hit with young children and the Farmer Giles Farmstead, the Cholderton Rare Breeds Farm and the Bush Farm Bison Centre are amongst the main local attractions of this nature. At around 40 minutes away from Salisbury and located next to Warminster, the recently re-branded Longleat Safari and Adventure Park will easily fill an entire day and leave you wanting more.

Situated in between Bath and Bristol, the Avon Valley Country Park is ideal for a sunny day, although perhaps not so good if the weather is damp. Bristol Zoo, Wookey Hole and Cheddar Gorge are also within driving distance of Salisbury, benefiting from an early start. Lying next to the city of Wells, the caves of Wookey Hole are thought to have once been called home by a rather unpleasant witch, before she was turned to stone by a priest with magical holy water.

Salisbury Attractions for Children

Cholderton Rare Breeds Farm

Address: Amesbury Road, Cholderton, Wiltshire, SP4 OEW, England
Tel: +44 (0)1980 629438
The nearby Cholderton Rare Breeds Farm has received the 'Best Family Attraction in Wiltshire' award and boasts splendid landscaped gardens, ponds, woodland trails, picnic areas, endangered breeds of British farm animals, playgrounds, tractor and trailer rides, and even pig races. There is also a craft shop, an education centre and a farmhouse café specialising in local produce, as well as Sunday carveries, occasional car boot sales, Easter themed activities and some wine-tasting weekends. You can even pay a little extra and join the farm staff for the day, learning about the animals as you care for them.
Open hours: March to October, daily - 10:00 to 18:00, November to February, Saturday and Sunday - 11:00 to 16:00
Admission: charge, discounts available for seniors, children and families

Farmer Giles Farmstead

Address: Teffont, Salisbury, Wiltshire, SP3 5QY, England
The Farmer Giles Farmstead is located on the westerly outskirts of the city, next to Teffont Magna, and is a real working dairy farm where visitors can bottle feed lambs and watch the cows being milked. There are also numerous goats, chickens, ducks, pigs, donkeys, Shetland ponies, chipmunks and rabbits, along with picnic tables and a café. Children will enjoy the adventure playground and indoor play areas, which come complete with tractors. Bespoke events include Pony Weekends, Vintage Farm Machinery days and seasonal markets.
Open hours: March to November, daily - 10:00 to 18:00, December to February - 10:00 to dusk
Admission: charge, discounts available for seniors, children and families

Salisbury Attractions for Children

Longleat Safari and Adventure Park

Address: Warminster, Wiltshire, BA12 7NW, England
Tel: +44 (0)1985 844400
Longleat resides 43 km / 26 miles from central Salisbury and features many family attractions. It is well worth arriving early, since tickets are only valid for one day and there is so much to see. First off will be a trip around the safari park, where you can drive past giraffes, zebras, camels, monkeys, lions, tigers, rhinos and wolves, stopping to hand-feed the friendly deer along the way. After that, you can enjoy guided tours of Longleat House itself, take a trip on the miniature railway, feed the sea lions living in the lake, try not to get lost in the hedge maze (the world's longest), and check out the two animal corners - Jungle Kingdom and Animal Adventure. Longleat is located just off the A36, in between Bath and Salisbury, on the A362. Do bear in mind that weekends and holidays can become extremely busy, with large queues and long waiting times. If you are looking for accommodation, then it is worth noting that Longleat features its very own Center Parcs complex and nearby hotel - Bishopstrow House.
Open hours: daily, April to early November
Admission: charge, discounts available for children

Bush Farm Bison Centre

Address: West Knoyle, Warminster, BA12 6AE, England
Tel: +44 (0)1747 830263
The Bush Farm Bison Centre is situated just outside of Warminster, roughly a 35-minute drive from Salisbury, where it comes with large herds of bison, elk and red deer, as well as some raccoons, chipmunks and owls. There are also spacious woodland clearings, areas suitable for picnics, a gallery of native American artefacts, various wildlife exhibits and a café. The centre offers a number of summer events, such as the Native American Pow Wow and the Wilderness Skills Gathering. The Farm Walk takes visitors on a circular tour of the animals, passing by a duck hide strategically sited alongside the bottom lake.
Open hours: April to September, Wednesday to Sunday - 10:00 to 17:00
Admission: charge, discounts available for children

Salisbury Attractions for Children

Avon Valley Country Park

Address: Pixash Lane, Salisbury Road, Keynsham, Bristol, England
Tel: +44 (0)1179 986 4929
The Avon Valley Country Park resides on the outskirts of Bath, close to Bristol and around 72 km / 45 miles from central Salisbury, being reachable by car in little more than an hour. With a boating pond, huge indoor play centres, friendly rare-breed farmyard animals, carp fishing, a miniature railway, picnic tables and barbecues, the park also features a riverside trail, and even a group of llamas and wallabies. When the sun is shining, you could easily spend an entire day here, leisurely exploring what is on offer.
Open hours: Wednesday to Sunday, Spring to Autumn - 10:00 to 18:00
Admission: charge, discounts available for children

Wookey Hole Caves

Address: From Salisbury A39 to Wells, Wells, Somerset, BA5 1BB, England
Tel: +44 (0)1749 672243
Wookey Hole is situated close to the medieval city of Wells, being roughly 75 km / 47 miles from Salisbury. The caves come with enormous large illuminated caverns and underground lakes, with entertaining guided tours imparting information about the people who once called the caves their home, including the Witch of Wookey. Apart from the giant stalactites and stalagmites, visitors will also find a working paper mill, a fairy garden, picnic tables next to the dinosaur valley, indoor soft play areas for children, Victorian slot machines, a theatre with family shows, a mirror maze and miniature golf. Since many of the attractions are undercover, this is a safe bet for a rainy day.
Open hours: daily, summer - 10:00 to 17:00, winter - 10:30 to 16:30
Admission: charge, discounts available for children aged between four and 16 years old, children four years old and under are free

Bristol Zoo and Gardens

Address: Clifton, Bristol, BS8 3HA, England
Salisbury Attractions for ChildrenSituated 87 km / 54 miles from central Salisbury, the award-winning Bristol Zoo ranks amongst the most popular attractions in the whole of the South West. Although the zoo is relatively compact, there is plenty to see and the enclosures are generally quite natural in their appearance, with islands and moats providing barriers, rather than cage bars. The Seal and Penguin Coast is particularly impressive, with its spacious underwater viewing area, while the insect house provides a chance to learn more about exotic bugs. There are also lions, pygmy hippos, rainbow lorikeets, gorillas, aquariums, picnic tables, a restaurant, an ice-cream kiosk and a gift shop, brimming with cuddly toy creatures.
Open hours: daily - 09:00 to 17:30 (closes at 16:30 during the winter)
Admission: charge, discounts available for children and families, children three years old and under are free

Cheddar Caves and Gorge

Address: Cheddar, Somerset, England
Cheddar Gorge is situated approximately 84 km / 52 miles from central Salisbury and features plenty for day trippers to enjoy, including some truly spectacular rocky scenery. There are a couple of illuminated caves, where a group of ancient settlers are known to have lived some 9,000 years ago. Cream teas are extremely popular here, together with outdoor activities such as rock climbing and pot-holing. Look out for the Cheddar Gorge Cheese Company, the wildlife trails and the resident wild goats.

Other family themed attractions within reach of Salisbury include: