5 Awesome Things to Do in London with a Toddler in Tow

If you find yourself with some time in London, perhaps like us between flights, and you’ve got a little traveller with you, if you’re anything like me you’ll be researching things to do in London with toddlers. Some of you might think London with toddlers is your idea of hell, but I’m going to share with you 5 awesome things to do in London with a toddler in tow to show that London CAN be enjoyed with little ones tagging along. These things can also be used to form an itinerary for a day out in London with young kids.Things To Do In London With A Toddler - 5 awesome things you can enjoy in London with your toddler

5 Awesome Things to Do in London with a Toddler in Tow

Breakfast at Le Pain Quotidien.

Start your day at this fabulous boutique café in London’s Southbank. I discovered Le Pain Quotidien when in London with my sisters last June and we had the most delicious brunch I’ve had in a long time. Baked eggs with chorizo was my dish of choice that day and it was really tasty. Fast forward two months and we were going to be enjoying a family day out in London, so I knew exactly where we were going to start our day.

BattleDad enjoyed baked eggs with salmon, I had a lovely chorizo and potato frittata and BattleKid tucked into scrambled eggs with crispy prosciutto. We also ordered a mixture of breads, which we unfortunately didn’t finish, there was just too much in it. To say BattleDad was impressed would be an understatement and the boy ate everything on his plate. It was the great way to start our day out in London and I can highly recommend it for your little ones as well.

THINGS TO DO IN LONDON WITH THE GIRLS
Amazing organic food at Le Pain Quotidien

Take a Ride on the London Eye

After fuelling up at Le Pain Quotidien, why not pop around the corner and take a ride on the London Eye. Again, I had done this with my sisters and thought the boys would enjoy it, so I booked us tickets online. As our tickets were Fast Track Anytime, we were able to arrive in our town time, and with our tickets printed before we arrived, we joined the Fast track queue, avoiding the other long queue. Despite it being the August Bank Holiday weekend, our queue moved relatively quickly and before long we were stepping into our pod to enjoy the views.

You might be thinking I’m mad to put this on my list of things for toddlers to do in London. But rest assured, BattleKid thoroughly enjoyed his time in our London Eye capsule, especially the interactive tablets which point out the various landmarks you can see from the Eye. And, as the rotation is only 30 minutes long, there wasn’t time for BattleKid to become bored before we were getting ready to disembark. So yes, the London Eye is something that you should include on your list of places to go with toddlers in London. My only recommendation is to book Fast Track tickets to prevent little people from getting too bored in the queues, which can be over an hour at times for the standard tickets queue.

London Eye With Kids
Enjoying the views from the London Eye

Visit the Fish at Sea Life, the London Aquarium

Conveniently located beside the London Eye, Sea Life is another ideal place to visit in London with toddlers. Again, for our visit to the London Aquarium, we got Fast Track Anytime tickets as we hadn’t been sure when we would visit (and finish) on the London Eye. This meant we could arrive at our leisure. We only had to collect a Ranger Pack for BattleKid from one of the ticket desks and in we went.

And I must say I was really impressed by Sea Life London. With it being located on the banks of the River Thames, I did wonder what it might be like inside, but I was pleasantly surprised by it. Spread over three floors with fish of all shapes and sizes, Sea Life had a vast array of fish and animals to keep any toddler occupied for hours. BattleKid loved seeing them all, especially Nemo of course, and he also enjoyed visiting the penguins. By far his favourite part was stamping on jellyfish lights in the newer exhibition. And my personal favourite was the largest of the tanks which spreads across all three floors and which contains Easter Islands Head statues. Very impressive I must say. We can highly recommend Sea Life if you’re wondering what to do with toddlers in London. You can never go wrong with a good aquarium.

family day in london - the wonderful Easter Island statues in one of the aquariums in SeaLife
The amazing Easter Island statue in the main tank of Sea Life London

Go on a Dragon Hunting Adventure in the Tower of London

BattleDad and I had visited the Tower of London a few times in the days before BattleKid came along, and we always enjoyed our visits. When our dragon hunting adventures started with BattleKid in Wales, I knew we had to take him dragon hunting at the Tower of London if we ever got the chance. And during our family day out in London last year, we did exactly that.

After seeing the fish in Sea Life, we walked across the Golden Jubilee Bridge to Embankment and hopped on a direct tube to Tower Hill. This was BattleKid’s first ride in the Underground. And once he clapped eyes on the Tower itself, he knew we were going to visit a castle to hunt a dragon. It’s such an impressive looking building from outside.

As you may or may not know, we always carry a little red dragon teddy bear with us, and we plant this for BattleKid to find. It makes visiting castles much more fun for him, and in turn we get the chance to wander around castles without someone saying, “can we go home”. However, if you don’t have a teddy bear on you, you can still hunt a dragon in the Tower of London without one. How? Just make your way to the top floor of the White Tower where you’ll find a huge dragon guarding some treasure.

There are lots of places to explore in the Tower of London and a few places to grab a cuppa and a slice of cake if little legs are getting a bit tired. You can always continue your dragon hunting after cake. Just remember to leave your visit to the White Tower until towards the end of your visit if you aren’t planting your own dragon for your toddlers to find.

family day in london - The Tower of London
Why not go on a dragon hunting adventure in the Tower of London

Visit Paddington Station and get your own Paddington Bear Teddy

The last stop on our family day out in London was Paddington station. We were heading back to our hotel at Heathrow airport and we took a Circle Line train from Tower Hill direct to Paddington Station. I had forgotten that there is a Paddington Bear shop there, naturally because this station is where Paddington Bear first arrived in London.

Unfortunately, a certain someone had fallen asleep in the tube on the way, so I had to venture into the shop myself. There are gifts of all sorts from bears and t-shirts, to keyrings and books, there’s something for everyone. I picked up a lovely Paddington Bear teddy for BattleKid who travelled all the way to Portland and Yellowstone with us. He now takes pride of place on BattleKid’s bedroom shelves. And coincidentally, we watched the Paddington movie during our two-week USA road trip which followed our day in London.

There are lots of places to take toddlers in London as I hope I’ve shown. You need not be worrying about visiting London with toddlers and whether you can find interesting and enjoyable things for them to see and do. London is filled with so many attractions, that you are bound to find a few to take your little ones to. Our list includes just some of the best things to do in London with toddlers. But don’t be limited by these. For more inspiration, why not check out these blog posts as well.

So, will you be visiting London with your toddlers in the future?

Cath x

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5 Things to Do in Missoula with a Toddler in Tow

Last year, as many of you know, we embarked on our biggest trip to date with BattleKid. It was a two-week USA road trip taking in the stunning Yellowstone National Park, smoky Missoula in Montana and the hip and vibrant city of Portland. Missoula is a place not many people will have heard of, us included before our trip, but is definitely worth a visit. And today I’m going to share with you 5 things to do in Missoula with a toddler in tow, should you be visiting yourself with a toddler or young kids.Missoula with a toddler - blog graphic

Photo by Kira auf der Heide on Unsplash

Now, we chose Missoula, which is in the state of Montana, as it was roughly the halfway point between Yellowstone and Portland. Stopping there would enable us to break up the driving and have some down time with BattleKid during our road trip. We also chose it because there was a town called Lolo right beside it and also Lolo National Forest. Lolo is the nickname my Dad got from his first grandson and it stuck. So naturally we needed to visit the town that shares his name.

We also intended to visit Lolo National Forest but alas it was not to be. Montana was cloaked in smoke due to widespread forest fires, some of which had reached Lolo National Forest, causing it to be closed to the public for safety. But it gives us a reason to return. With the forest no longer an option, we needed to find things to do in Missoula with kids.

Our first port of call was Google. We searched for things to do with kids in Missoula. These had to include fun activities for kids as we had BattleKid with us. We were also fortunate that our AirBnB host had left a few magazines in the apartment one of which had articles about things to do in Montana with kids. The articles proved so useful to us. They not only showed what to do with kids in Missoula and the wider Montana area, they also gave some ideas of free things to do in Missoula.

Armed with as much information as possible, we set out to discover Missoula and other nearby things that we otherwise would have missed had the forest been open. And as a result, I am able to share with you 5 things to do in Missoula with a toddler in tow. All of these are fun things to do in Missoula and the slightly wider areas around it.

5 Things to Do in Missoula with a Toddler in Tow

Have a Picnic in Caras Park Missoula

Caras Park is located in Downtown Missoula along the Clark Fort River. It is a lovely area and the Park Pavilion plays host to a variety of events throughout the year including music concerts, festivals and even a type of Oktoberfest, which was being set up the day we had our picnic in the park.

We visited one day during our time in Missoula after being in the wider Montana area, and I had packed a picnic. We found some picnic benches near the Pavilion and enjoyed our lunch in the sun. Other families soon joined us on the adjacent benches for their own picnics. And if you don’t want to sit on the benches there are plenty of lovely grassy areas for picnic blankets too. Afterwards, you can enjoy one of the following two things.

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Picnic time in Missoula

Have a Ride on the Carousel for Missoula

Located in Caras Park, the Carousel for Missoula was opened in 1995 and was the culmination of the labour of many volunteers and over 100,000 construction hours. Featuring 38 hand-carved ponies, two chariots, 14 gargoyles, mirror frames and the largest band organ in continuous use in America, it is somewhere kids, young and old, can enjoy. You need a token per ride, which costs just 75c, and if you, as a parent, want to ride and share a pony with your child (as I did), it will cost you two tokens.

There is also a chance to win free rides by collecting rings from a chute as you pass by, but you need to be on an outside pony to try your luck. BattleKid and I enjoyed two rides together and he didn’t want to get off. The Carousel for Missoula is really one of the fun things to do in Missoula with kids that shouldn’t be missed. It is open 364 days of the year between 11 and 5.30.

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One the Carousel for Missoula

Let your toddler run wild in the Dragon Hollow Playground

Also located in Caras Park, right beside the Carousel for Missoula, the Dragon Hollow playground is a brilliant place to visit with toddlers and kids. It was designed by artists and consultants after getting advice and ideas from local school children. It is a very safe playground which is enclosed by a picket fence and has chip bark flooring. Featuring a huge Dragon themed play house with tunnels, stairs and slides, BattleKid had a great time weaving his way through to the biggest slide he could find!

There are also swings, musical play features and an area for smaller children. It is suitable for kids from 18 months to 12 years of age, is open all year round and is free to use. There are seats around the playground for parents to take a breather. One thing I will point out is that once your child enters the dragon, you cannot easily see them until they emerge from a slide. So just be cautious. But it is one of the best wooden playhouses I have ever come across and BattleKid thoroughly enjoyed himself here.things to do in missoula with a toddler in tow - visit dragon hollow playground

Visit the National Bison Range

Established in 1908 as a sanctuary for the American bison, the National Bison Range is located approximately an hour north of Missoula. It was one of the places featured in the magazines that our AirBnB host had left in the apartment and somewhere we might have missed. It is home to a herd of between 350 and 500 bison but is also home to other animals such as coyote, black bear, elk, bighorn sheep and pronghorn deer.

There are two routes you can drive at the Bison Range. The short Prairie Drive is open all-year round while the longer Red Sleep Mountain Drive is only open from mid-May to early October. We did the Red Sleep Mountain Drive and it was challenging. It has sharp switch-backs and steep declines and I’d recommend you do this in a 4×4 car due to the roughness of the road. Note, this drive is closed during the winter months.

Although we had seen bison in Yellowstone, we were hoping to see other animals and saw elk and pronghorn deer during our visit. A day pass costs just $5 (you can get an annual oass valid from your first visit for just $15), and the gates are generally open from 7am to 7pm. The visitor’s centre, where you pay, has plenty of information about the range and also has toilets too. Although we only spent a few hours there it was worth the drive from Missoula.

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Visiting the National Bison Range, Montana

Visit Ewam Buddha Garden, the Garden of One Thousand Buddhas

This was one of the most surprising places we visited in Montana. Situated in Arlee, about 40 minutes north of Missoula, the Ewam Buddha Garden has to be one of the most peaceful and tranquil places we’ve ever visited.

In the centre of the garden lies a 24-foot tall statue of Yum Chenmo. One thousand Montana-made images of Buddha are arranged in the shape of an eight-spoked Dharma wheel, which encircle Yum Chenmo. 1000 additional stupas surmount the two exterior throne walls, creating the outer rim of the Dharma wheel. And it is a mesmorising sight to see.

5 things to do in missoula with a toddler in tow - visit the Ewam Buddha Garden
A view of the Ewam Buddha Garden from the hill of prayer flags. See how smokey it is!

The gardens also have a small lake hosting fish and surrounded by large Buddha statues. The garden is open all year round from dawn until dusk and is free to visit (with donation boxes at various points throughout the garden). It was designed for people to enjoy the space, flowers and serene surroundings. Guided tours are available and there is also a gift shop and ample parking.

Once we found out about the Garden of One Thousand Buddhas we knew we had to visit it. A dear friend of ours in Wales introduced us to Buddhism. BattleKid enjoyed our walk around the garden, stopping here and there to admire certain Buddha statues and to say hello to the fish. I’m just sorry we didn’t know there was a prayer flag mount there before we went, or we would have created our own to add. You wouldn’t think this is a place to visit with kids but BattleKid really enjoyed it, so I’m sure your kids would too. And as it is on the same route as the Bison Range you could visit both in one day.

5 things to do in missoula with a toddler in tow - visit the garden of one thousand buddhas
The central buddha in the Ewam Buddha Garden.

Missoula with a toddler - Facebook graphic

I can hand-on-heart say we enjoyed each and every one of these activities in Missoula and Montana. And in hindsight the forest fires and resulting smoke were a blessing in disguise. We might not have visited any of these sights had it not been for the fact that Lolo National Forest, our original reason for visiting Missoula, was closed. Our sudden change of plans worked out for the best and we got to visit places even BattleKid enjoyed.

So, if you are wondering what to do in Missoula and Montana with toddlers and young children, I hope I’ve given you some ideas of both paid and free things to do with my 5 things to do in Missoula with a toddler in tow.

And if you are considering visiting the USA with kids and not sure what there is to do with them in certain cities, these posts might help decide for you!

20 Things to do  in Oklahoma City with kids (or without) – Parenthood and Passports

How to do a weekend trip to Sarasota, Florida with kids – Our Globetrotters

My perfect 24 hours in San Francisco with kids: itinerary – Learning Escapes

5 Things to do in New York with a Toddler in Tow – BattleMum

Cath x

Missoula with a toddler - pinterest graphic Missoula with a toddler - twitter graphic

5 Free Things to Do in Bluestone with a Toddler in Tow

It’s safe to say that we are huge fans of Bluestone National Park Resort. We have gone no less than 5 times since being first introduced to Bluestone by friends of ours and the fact we’ve returned every year since our first visit is testament to how good it really is. Many of our visits have been weekend breaks with toddlers in tow and we very recently had the pleasure of experiencing a mid-week stay there too. Since we’ve had quite a few Bluestone holidays with toddlers now, I thought I would put together a list of 5 free things to do in Bluestone with a toddler in tow, just to show there is plenty to do without having to break the bank.bluestone with a toddler

5 Free Things to Do in Bluestone with a Toddler in Tow

Blue Lagoon Bluestone

Visits to the Bluestone water park are included in your booking and you can visit as many times as you like. You get access to the water park from the day of your arrival from 11am, and you can use it until 3pm on the day of your departure. We never miss an opportunity to visit the Blue Lagoon, and both BattleKid and our friends’ children always enjoy themselves. This gloriously temperature-controlled water park is open all-year round and can be used in all-weather conditions. There is a large pool with a wave machine, a rapid river, 2 water flumes (which you must be over 1.1 metres to use), and two separate play areas for kids to enjoy. The pirates shipwreck is for slightly older kids, although BattleKid always heads there at some stage during our visit. And there is a smaller enclosed little water cove for the little swimmers of the family.

You don’t even need to get in yourself if you don’t want to. Accompanying guests can sit around the edge of the pool area on deck chairs or you can enjoy drinks and snacks in one of the two eateries at the Blue Lagoon. The Blue Lagoon Café is located upstairs and overlooks the water park, while the Fish Shack is located pool-side downstairs. The Blue Lagoon is an ideal place to spend a few hours with the kids, especially if the weather isn’t great outside and it’s included in your booking.

mid-week stay at bluestone - the blue lagoon pool
The Blue Lagoon of Bluestone

Enjoy a Nature Trail Walk around the Lake

We have always enjoyed walks around the lake during our Bluestone weekend breaks, and BattleKid and I enjoyed another walk around the lake on our solo morning together during our last visit. This time I turned it into a nature trail and we spent our time spotting frosty leaves, ducks on the lake and even a Halloween scarecrow who was fishing. We also had to step aside for a tractor who was on the footpath around the lake.

Just to one side of the lake is a bug hotel and BattleKid found it fascinating, albeit a little frustrating that he couldn’t see any bugs. I told him they were still in bed and he seemed to accept it. He also spotted some toadstools under the bug hotel. This was a great chance for me to explain to him that we should never pick up anything from the ground, even if it looks like a mushroom, as it could be dangerous and make us very sick.things to do in bluestone with a toddler in tow - spotting toad stools under a bug hotel at bluestone

On a previous visit to the lake at Bluestone one June, we spotted baby frogs on the paths around the lake. We were very conscious of not stepping on them, although there were so many of them it was hard. No matter what the time of year for your visit to the Bluestone Resort in Wales, there will always be something for your toddler to spot and that can be incorporated into a nature trail walk around the lake.

bluestone with a toddler
Spotting frogs on a nature walk in Bluestone

Go on a Gruffalo Hunt towards Camp Smokey from the Village

We have visited Camp Smokey once during our visits to Bluestone and it is where we first discovered s’mores (thanks S). The setting for Camp Smokey is deep in the woods and has some fantastic nature trails around it, one of which leads to and from the Village. On our last visit to the Bluestone holiday park, I took BattleKid on a Gruffalo hunt in what we termed “the deep, dark woods” on the trail that leads from the Village to Camp Smokey.

Now, this little hunt does involve a bit of imagination (and a Gruffalo teddy bear or picture). I had stashed BattleKid’s Gruffalo teddy in my coat pocket, and we headed into the deep dark woods of Bluestone on the hunt for a Gruffalo. We checked around the trees, we checked under leaves and branches, but couldn’t find him. We stopped briefly to watch a squirrel running around on the ground and then going up and down tree trunks. BattleKid wanted him to come to us and kept calling him. We carried on further into the woods, and eventually found the Gruffalo hiding in the V of two branches near the ground.bluestone with a toddler - a Gruffalo hunt in the deep dark woods

BattleKid was thrilled and we spent a lovely hour walking in the woods, picking up acorns on branches and watching the squirrel. You don’t have to make it a Gruffalo hunt, it could be an extension of the nature trail around the lake. You don’t even have to go all the way to Camp Smokey. But it’s a great area to get out for a walk and discover nature with toddlers. And even better, it’s also free. Just a word of warning, bring your raincoats and wellies as you never know when the weather might turn on you.

Run off steam in the Bluestone Adventure Centre

Although we haven’t visited the Adventure Centre ourselves, except for the Bluestone Kingdom of the Elves, it is filled with activities of all kinds for toddlers and older children. There is a den, mini golf, soft play, a ball pool, Lego with Lego walls which will delight fans old and young and a circus zone. These activities are all free and there are other paid activities on offer in the Adventure Centre in Bluestone such as messy play and sensory sessions.

The majority of the activities at the Adventure Centre are free and included in your booking. As it is an indoor venue it is ideal should the weather turn particularly horrible outside. That said, it’s also a great place to let kids of all ages run off some steam. And as it is situated beside the Blue Lagoon, you could combine a visit to both to really tire them out. I’m dying to visit the Adventure Centre with BattleKid, and maybe we’ll get the chance one day.bluestone with a toddler in tow- run off steam in the Adventure Centre

Visit the playgrounds in the Village

I was really impressed by the Treetots Toddler Play Area located in the Village of Bluestone when we first visited back in June 2016 while we waiting to access our lodge. This area has a tree-house type tunnel leading to a slide and some slides. The ground is covered in chip bark and is separated from the Treehouse Play Area for older children by a cargo netting fence.

So impressed by it were we, that we visited it again during that same weekend break with our toddler. Both he and our friends’ son thoroughly enjoyed themselves.

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Enjoying the toddler playground beside the Village in Bluestone

And now there is a new addition to the Village area. The Village green has been turned into a big playground and was a lovely surprise for BattleKid and I to stumble upon during our solo morning adventures in Bluestone last October. This area has been designed with kids in mind and has everything from climbing frames and swings to slides and roundabouts. BattleKid had to be torn away from it so we could get back to our Grassholm Lodge.

We visited it again later the same day with our friends who hadn’t seen it, and despite the rain both boys had a blast. I can highly recommend both playgrounds in the Bluestone Village for toddlers. And if you aren’t in a hurry you can always get a coffee at the Ty Coffi shop or stop at the Knights Tafarn afterwards for some food.

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Fun in the new playground of Bluestone

There are also lots of things to do near Bluestone which are free such as a visit to the beautiful seaside town of Tenby or the glorious beaches of Newgale and Barafundle Bay. There are also things you can pay for like a visit to Folly Farm which is less than a 10-minute drive from the Bluestone Park. You could also do a spot of dragon hunting in one of the many castles nearby as we did at Pembroke Castle. Entry to the castles is not expensive.

Whether you choose to stay in the Bluestone National Resort Park for your entire stay or plan to venture further afield, I hope I’ve shown you that there are at least 5 free things to do in Bluestone with a toddler in tow. And by all means, these activities can extend to older children too.bluestone with a toddler in tow

And if you are still in two minds about whether Bluestone is suitable as a destination for holidays with toddlers, then can I suggest you read my post about our Mid-Week Stay at Bluestone and my review of the Grassholm Lodge at Bluestone. You could also check out my four Holiday Diaries for our other visits to Bluestone, in our Travel Section.

Cath x

bluestone with a toddler

5 free things to do in Bluestone with a toddler in tow

5 Things To Do Around Lake Bled with a Toddler in Tow

Two years ago, we visited Slovenia, and more specifically Lake Bled, with friends of ours. Now when those friends suggested a holiday around a lake, I was quite dubious. BattleKid was 18 months old at the time and I really wondered if there were things to do around Lake Bled with a Toddler in Tow. We had never even considered Slovenia as a holiday destination but the pictures I was seeing of Lake Bled got me excited nonetheless. things to do around lake bled with a toddler

We went in the August as our friend’s children are older and the holiday needed to fit in during their school holidays.  And as our friend’s children were older, they had been on the hunt for a holiday which was different from your usual package sun holiday. So, Lake Bled was the suggested and accommodation and flights were swiftly booked.

I did wonder how we would fair with BattleKid being so young but I need not have worried. It turns out there are plenty of things to do around Lake Bled with a toddler that you can enjoy even with a younger child about.

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Beautiful Lake Bled

5 Things to Do Around Lake Bled with a Toddler in Tow

A walk Around Lake Bled.

One of the very first things we did around Lake Bled with BattleKid was walk around Lake Bled. There is a beautiful walk around the circumference of the lake and goes from walks near one of the hotels in town, under a bridge, to the far end of the lake (just under 4 miles on total). There is a boardwalk from here before you walk around the back of the entrance to the lido. It is simply a beautiful place to take a walk and takes roughly 2-2.5 hours to complete, depending on whether you stop to teach your toddler to throw stones in the water.

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Walk around the lake

BattleKid loved this and it became a regular thing for us when we visited the lake. There are jettys where the gondolas stop that make for a great platform to teach an 18 month old toddler to throw stones into the water. There are also several areas suitable for having a picnic and also several cafes and restaurants around the lake for lunch, dinners or even a snack (see below).

BattleKid and I even had a walk ourselves around the lake one day while we waited for everyone else to do their toboggan ride, which I am reliably informed was brilliant (best suited to older children).

Relax and Swim at Bled Lido.

Bled Lido is an area of the lake made for pleasure, sunbathing, swimming and body boarding. It is situated on the side of the Lake opposite the town just under the castle and has a charge to enter it. We visited it twice, as written about in my Slovenia Holiday Diaries, and is a great place to bring a toddler.

There are several pools of varying depths to go in, and BattleKid and I got into the water on both occasions. He thoroughly enjoyed it, having gotten used to being in the water from his Waterbabies lessons. You can also swim freely in the lake itself outside of the pools, but it is advised to stay in certain areas to avoid being in a precarious position with kayaks, body boarders or worse still, the gondolas ferrying people across to the island.

BattleDad, our friend and their teenage son enjoyed body boarding one day and I was quite surprised at how well BattleDad was doing for his first time, and how much fun they seemed to be having, even in the rain that rolled in off the Alps one afternoon.

There are also kayaks which can be hired out, a room with table tennis (which we ladies and BattleKid used as shelter the afternoon of the rain), sand pits and swings for children, and also ample changing rooms and lockers. The Bled Lido is a great place for those living around the Lake to go to for a bit of R&R.

Just be warned. If you decide to swim outside the pools, you cannot reach the bottom of the lake with your feet so you should be able to swim, and you will be swimming among the fish of the lake at all times, whether it is in the pools or in the open water!

Bled Lido costs €7 per adult and €5 per child under 14 years of age*. This gives you all day access to the lido. Other amenities such as kayaks, deckchairs and umbrellas can be hired for additional charges.

Visit Bled Castle and Admire the Views.

Bled Castle is situated on a hill overlooking Lake Bled itself. It is best reached by car or by bus. There are many coaches which go to the castle. There is parking at the castle grounds but at busy times it might take you a while to find a space.

Bled Castle which has both Romanesque and Renaissance architecture, has some stunning views of the Lake and surrounding areas. This is definitely a place to visit if you want to get some panoramic pictures of the lake from above.

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Bled Castle

BattleKid quite enjoyed toddling around the courtyard of the castle while everyone else explored the castle. There are several rooms toddlers can visit such as Workshop/Library (others), but I would suggest that if you visit you leave the buggy in the car. The courtyard is cobbled and there are areas of the castle which are not very buggy accessible. We had BattleKid in his Toddlepak reins and they worked a treat.

We hadn’t started our dragon hunting adventures when we visited Bled Castle, but it would make a great place to do some dragon hunting!

Bled castle costs €10 per adult and €5 per child under 14. For families with at least 2 adults, 1 child is admitted free of charge. Bled Castle also has a museum and restaurant if you fancy a sit down in a beautiful setting.

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Panorama views of Lake Bled from Bled Castle

Take a Pletna Boat to the Church on the Island.

In the centre of Lake Bled lies an island with a church. It is the iconic church which forms the centrepiece of most pictures and photographs of Lake Bled. To reach it you need to take one of the many gondolas, or pletna boats, from the stations around the lake. It is said that your wish will come true if you ring the bells inside the church.

We took BattleKid over and he seemed to enjoy the boat ride. The gondola itself has a charge (currently €14 per adult return and €7 per child under 14 return) but visiting the island itself is free. There is a walk around the edge of the island which doesn’t take very long. There are information boards along this route telling you about the different species of fish that can be found in Lake Bled.

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Take a Pletna boat to visit the church on the island

You can go inside the church which carries a donation cost (€6 at the time of our visit in 2015), there is a gift shop selling all manner of items including chocolate and gifts, and there is a tea room too (check this). Visiting the island is an absolute must if you visit Lake Bled. I really enjoyed the ride across the lake and there were no complaints from BattleKid either.

Savour a Bled Cake.

No trip to Lake Bled would be complete without having at least one slice of Bled Cake. It would remind me of a custard slice but boy is it so much more. We had been told to make sure we tried on at Bled itself, so one afternoon, while out as a family, the Battle Family stopped at a rather nice restaurant for a slice of Bled Cake and some tea/coffee and we were not disappointed.

It was the most heavenly take on a vanilla slice I have ever tasted and even BattleKid got in on the act. I haven’t tasted a vanilla-based dessert or cake anywhere near as good as Bled Cake. So, I highly recommend you try it if you ever get the chance to visit Bled. And you must let your toddler have at least one mouthful.

things to do around lake bled with a toddler
About to devour some Bled Cake

I am sure there are other things to do around Lake Bled with a toddler in tow, but these were our top 5. In the end, it was one of the best holidays we’ve had within Europe with BattleKid, so much so we have every intention of returning when he is older. I think BattleDad is keen to get both BattleKid and me on the toboggan ride!

A lake-side holiday wouldn’t have been my first choice of holiday that year but we were not disappointed and it has me eager to try another lake-side holiday in the near future. I was pleasantly surprised that there were actually things to do around Lake Bled with a toddler in tow, and I’d highly recommend it as a holiday destination, whether you have toddlers or not.

And if you think you can get away with a one-day visit, consider it carefully as Elizabeth from Dutch Dutch Goose regretted not staying at least one night around Lake Bled. I am also keen to explore Slovenia as a whole country next time we visit as Jules from Shades of Courage has a brilliant post featuring much more of the country which they explored during a 15-day road trip. Can I go now?

Have you done a lake-side holiday, and if so, where should we go next?

Thanks for reading,

Cath x

*Prices correct at the time of writing this post.

things to do around lake bled with a toddler things to do around lake bled with a toddler

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