Home Travel Take the kids to … Puzzlewood, Forest of Dean

Take the kids to … Puzzlewood, Forest of Dean

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An enchanted, mystical wood makes for contented kids and adults on a trip where smart technology meets traditional fun

Children on a bridge at Puzzlewood
Forest fun … children on a bridge at Puzzlewood

In a nutshell
A maze of mysterious pathways, cut between moss-covered rocks (known as scowles), occupying an enchanted wood, in the middle of the Forest of Dean. Gandalf eat your heart out. Elves and trolls, fairies and gnomes, it feels like anything and anyone could peek out at you in this magical, mythical landscape. No set trails, just reach a fork in the path and choose your route. A place where your kids – and your imagination – can run wild.

Fun fact
Film crews love it almost as much as the kids. Sequences for television shows Merlin, Doctor Who, and Atlantis have been shot here, as have scenes for the movies Jack the Giant Slayer, and Star Wars: The Force Awakens.

Best thing about it
The new Animal Colouring App. Their brains buzzing after their walk in the woods, my kids loved creating gigantic virtual chickens and pigs – and all with just a felt pen and a smartphone.

Puzzlewood, Coleford, Forest of Dean. Tuesday 16th February 2016. Augmented reality mobile app brings the “Star Wars” movie set woodland attraction to life. The mobile phone app, designed for children, creates interactive content on a mobile phone.
Child’s play … the mobile phone app, designed for kids, creates interactive content on a smartphone. Photograph: David Broadbent

What about lunch?
There is a small onsite cafe for paninis, baked potatoes and similar snacks, or picnic benches for those bringing their own. For pub grub, try the Ostrich Inn in the nearby village of Newland.

Exit through the gift shop?
Only if you choose to. There are Puzzlewood-branded cookies and shortbread, plus locally produced apple and pear juices on offer. And there are elegant wooden walking sticks for anyone unsteady on their feet.

A woodland shot of trees, foliage and, in the distance, a wooden bridge, at Puzzlewood, Forest of Dean.

Getting there
Tricky without a car. Either a train to Lydney (5.6 miles) or Chepstow (10 miles) and then taxi, or train to Gloucester and then bus to Coleford (Route 30 and 31).

Value for money?
Adults £6.50, child (3-16) £5.50, family ticket for four £23. So, yes, definitely. As well as the woods, there is an indoor and outdoor maze, farm animals and a playground. It’s one of the few outings that improves in the rain!

Opening times
Daily, April to October. Check website for low-season openings. Easter Egg hunt, 25-28 March; performance of A Midsummer Night’s Dream, 27 June to 3 July, 01594 833187, puzzlewood.net.

[Source:- Gurdian]
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