AFTER some budget fun for kids over the Easter holidays?
The National Trust is staging a series of Easter Egg trails at 190 sites across the UK.
Each costs just £3 a head and of course, you’ll be rewarded with a choccy treat at the end.
Sophie Swietochowski picks out some of the eggshell-ent trails to try, plus some nearby National Trust properties to spend the night in.
CHESHIRE: Whisk the whole family (even the dog) off for a rural spring adventure.
Now is the best time of year to visit the National Trust’s Lyme estate, overlooking grassy moorland and with deer parks on its doorstep.
Keep your eyes peeled for animals and insects as you walk the colourful garden trail, then head to Lyme East Lodge, at the edge of the estate, which sleeps four plus two dogs and costs from just over £68pp per night.
CO FERMANAGH, NORTHERN IRELAND: This area is as unspoilt as it gets, with almost a third of it covered in bodies of water.
Follow the birdsong to Florence Court, an 18th Century house and gardens that back on to thick woodland and the mighty Benaughlin mountain.
You’ll spot plenty of birds on the trail, including robins, blackbirds, thrushes, wrens, chiffchaffs and blackcaps.
Spend the weekend in the four-person Butler’s Apartment, in Florence Court’s laundry yard, which costs from £48pp per night.
DERBYSHIRE: A winding drive bordered by ancient oak trees leads to the picturesque Hardwick Hall, with its golden stonework and tall turrets.
Kids will want to make a beeline for the parkland trail, where they’ll be tasked with counting bumblebees and spotting spring colour.
You won’t need to leave the estate if you book a weekend at 4 Stable Yard Cottage, sleeping six and costing from just over £30pp per night.
SUFFOLK: The teeny hamlet of Flatford is a peaceful haven for nature lovers, with the River Stour running through its centre and plenty of winding paths to be explored.
Look out for kingfishers and swans on the river as well as butterflies and barn owls in the fields.
Spend the night in Thorington Lodge, a cosy 17th Century cottage that sleeps three and features a log burner.
It costs just over £57pp per night.
When you’ve finished admiring the azaleas, magnolias and cherry blossoms along the trail, there will be face-painting, games and even a giant bird’s nest up by the castle.
If you have cash to splash, stay in the two-person Yew Tree Barn on the Polesden Lacey Estate, which costs from £92pp per night.
CORNWALL: Step back in time at Lanhydrock, a Victorian country house near Bodmin.
Its old Thatched Cottage has been transformed into a House of Games for Easter, plus there’s face-painting, cream teas in the Stables Tea Room and special routes that teach visitors how the Victorians celebrated Easter.
Spend the weekend in the 1920s-style Cutmadoc villa, which sleeps six and costs from £40pp per night.
- All of the above trails are open for various dates throughout April.
- To view specific dates, or book any of the above properties and find more Easter Egg trails, see nationaltrust.org.uk.