Family friendly activities and things to do this summer in Southampton

Family friendly activities and things to do this summer in Southampton

Summertime is here and it’s time to plan lots of fun things to do with all the family. We have some great ideas for things to get you SO excited about from child-friendly events through to entertaining activities for when the weather’s not quite playing ball.

Embrace the big outdoors

Go ape hero

Make the most of the sunny weather by booking onto some outdoor activities. Just a few miles out of the city centre, you’ll find Alpine Snowsports Centre where you can try out skiing, snowboarding and donutting. Look out for their summer holiday activities too.

Book onto a laser tag or paintballing session with Ambush Paintball and Laser Tag, a short drive from our city or try your hand at sailing or water sports with either First Class Sailing or Firstaway Yacht Charters Ltd.

For those with a head for heights, the high ropes course at the Go Ape! centre at Itchen Valley Country Park is great fun too!

Swimming is always a popular family event, so check out the family swim sessions on offer at The Quays Swimming and Diving Complex.

At Westquay Esplande, be sure to take a family trip to The Enchanted Labyrinth. Pick up your activity passport and discover the eight mythical creatures to crack the maze to earn your place on The Wizard’s Tower (the 16.5 metre tall helter-skelter). The Enchanted Labyrinth runs from 31st July-30th August, 10am-7pm with free entry.

Alpine snowsports hero

Tip top events

With more and more events now taking place, now’s the time to get the diary out and start planning. You can see a full list of what’s coming up on our events calendar but here are some highlights…

Southern Brave v Oval Invincibles held at the Ageas Bowl on 16th August

Online Family Workshop - Crafty Castles, 17th August 

Bowie Experience, held at The 1865 on 20th August

    Awesome Egyptians Family Workshop (6+) at SeaCity Museum on 25th August. 

    People's Pride Family Fun Day, Five Acres Recreation Ground, 30th August

    Keep your eyes open for other family workshops at SeaCity Museum and Southampton City Art Gallery as well as events at the Tudor House and Garden. It's well worth making time to visit these attractions over the summer months as well as there's lots for families to discover.

    Rainy day ideas

    Basketball fun

    If rain is forecast, that doesn’t mean you have to stop play. We have lots of fun indoor activities to get involved with. Compete against each other at High Score Arcade, a free-play amusement centre on East Street, solve the riddles and clues at Exciting Escapes, an escape room on Shirley High Street or Locked in a Room - another escape room that's located in the city centre. Perhaps explore some of our history on a visit around the Medieval Merchants House in the city centre. Showcase Cinema DeLux is a great bet too with lots of the latest blockbusters being screened.

    We have indoor sporting activities too including ten pin bowling, climbing and trampolining.


    If the rain’s coming down then it can be really nice to pop into some of our cafes. Sprinkles Gelato, Krispy Kreme and Stakks are just some of the family favourites for you to enjoy. Plus, don’t forget to look out for special offers with your SO card (read more about this further on).

    Hamleys Southampton Hero

    Take a look at some of our shops as well. You’ll find the LEGO store, Hamleys, Smiggle and Build-A-Bear Workshop in Westquay Shopping Centre, and popular shops such as Game on Above Bar Street. Within the Marlands Shopping Centre a popular shop for those young and old is the Rockbottom Toystore. You'll also find Claire's Accessories here.

    Browse our store listings here.

    Make the most of your SO card

    Don’t forget to take advantage of the SO card to save money in shops, restaurants and in a number of attractions across our city. Take a look at the offers currently running. If you don't have a physical copy of the card, you can download one for free here and simply show on your phone in-store to redeem. There are also a selected number of physical copies of the card at The Marlands if you prefer. 

    Visit Southampton SO Card

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