London lifestyle & travels with kids and babies
Windsor Castle needs little introduction and a Windsor day trip from London is easy! Perhaps though a warm up Windsor castle for kids: this is largest and oldest occupied castle in the world, one of the official residences of Her Majesty The Queen, but also rather mysterious and rumoured to be haunted. And Windsor castle with kids made for us a perfect day out, filled with history, exploring, intrigues and running around.
There are tones of history, in here a link with facts which I found palatable for little darlings. There are also over 10 acres of land with stunning gardens, castle, towers, state rooms and magnificent chapel to mention just a few.
And equally impressive are the queues on a Saturday! But there will be amazing distractions with the Changing guards taking place at 11am. And afterall these days we all appreciate thorough security checks especially for such prime sites (so do expect airport style checks!). But one can easily talk to the kids over 20 minutes about the Queens’s guards bearskin hats and their tales, their swords, loaded arms and exaggerated steps. The rest of time, one could be simply build further the kids anticipation, go through historical milestones and kings – smart phones and links above are parents best friends! And if everything fails (as for our 15 months old), wondering around is another option.
Once we were in, our boys were quite ecstatic running around the cobbled lanes and soaking in the views with the towers, fortresses and the palatial surroundings. Each Saturday and school holidays there are organised activities for kids plus on any occasion games, trails, quiz sheets; but we preferred a freestyle wander round on this visit.
We took a picnic for the young men, I find it handier when there’s so much gorgeous sightseeing. And after lunch with a sleeping 14 months old, we took turns to relax in the sun and visit the State Apartments with our almost 4 years old – who ended up going round twice (as one could expect, no prams are allowed in here).
Our eldest loved Queen Mary’s Dolls’ house – and rightly renamed it Dolls’ palace. The knights apparel was equally fascinating, we talked about swords, origins and times; shields and armours, how heavy and how protecting, long numerous guns and weapons, sculptures and paintings and so on.
More Queen’s guards walking around inside the Castle with swords, their funny bearskin hats, imposing uniforms – a highlight for our boys!
A well deserved ice-cream break for all of us, more wandering around and St George’s Chapel and we concluded a wonderful dayout.
Windsor day trip from Kensington took us less than 1 hour each way driving, despite week-end traffic. The kids loved it and unsurprisingly since, I kept on hearing about going back to Her Majesty palace. Both boys fancy themselves now as Queen’s guards and keep walking around the house with their pretend swords and hats – such a welcome change to the usual Spidermen mischief!
Ps: many thanks to the Royal Collection Trust for the press tickets. Windsor castle for kids has tones of history and fun, impressions, pics and excited kids entirely ours.