Yorkshire Times
Weekend Edition
3:00 AM 2nd April 2022

Which Is The UK’s Best Area For Child-Friendly Nature Experiences?

New research has revealed that England’s Cumbria is the UK’s greenest outdoor area for children.

The study by childcare and education expert Little Ones London analysed TripAdvisor ratings and reviews of the UK’s top kid-friendly outdoor locations to unveil the ten regions with the best green spaces for children.

Catbells, Cumbria
Catbells, Cumbria
The study reveals Cumbria, England, as the greenest area for children with the most natural venues – 15 in total. The area boasts of five bodies of water, four hiking trails, five nature and wildlife areas, and a national park, all kid-friendly. It recorded 5,527 reviews for all its 15 spaces, with Catbells Lakeland Walk attracting the most at 1,687.

A visitor commented:
“Great walk, took 8-year-old and 10-year-old who loved the scrambling near the top, can do a circular walk back to the car parked on the road away from double yellows.” It is also popularly mentioned for “family walk.”

Devon in Southwest England takes second place with the second-highest number of green outdoor spaces for children totalling 13. Children can enjoy a variety of six hiking trails, five nature and wildlife areas, a park and a garden. Trip Advisor records 4,785 reviews for Devon’s kid-friendly green venues, with Coleton Fishacre taking the spotlight with 1,853 reviews. The garden area received compliments like, “you could explore the 20-acre property, which took you to a fantastic viewing point overlooking a cove on the coast. The house was really interesting too - both of my children (10 and 13) really enjoyed the visit.” Other visitors described it as a “hidden gem in South Devon.”

Sitting in third place is Scotland’s Highlands, with 13 green outdoor venues for children and 2,407 reviews. The mountainous region offers young ones five Nature and Wildlife Areas to explore, two national parks, two bodies of water, a forest, garden, hiking trail and a park. Highland Titles and Nature Reserve attracted the most reviews of 488. Visitors to the nature and wildlife area describe the experience as “a brilliant tour”, “a great day out”, and a “great experience.”
Rank Green Outdoor Area Total No. Child-Friendly
Green Outdoor Venues
1 Cumbria 15
2 Devon 13
3 Scottish Highlands 13
4 Cornwall 11
5 Kent 10
6 Northumberland 8
7 Hampshire 7
8 North Yorkshire 7
9 Shropshire 7
10 Gloucestershire 6

In fourth place is England’s coastal area of Cornwall with 11 green kid-friendly outdoor venues. The site has two bodies of water, three hiking trails with scenic walking views, four nature and wildlife areas, a park and a national park. The Screech Owl Sanctuary in St. Columb Major has the highest number of reviews with 1,306 and gives children the chance to interact with cared-for owls.

Also on the list is the Hampshire’s Hawk Conservancy Trust, with the most reviewed venue in the study, totalling 3,192 reviews. A visitor commented, “What a wonderful time our family had when we visited the conservancy on Thursday, 17 February. Six of us visited - 3 children aged 5 to 10, one parent and two grandparents – and we all enjoyed ourselves.” Hampshire is seventh on the list, with seven venues and the highest total reviews per area of 5,701.

Commenting on the study, a spokesperson from Little Ones London said:
“The UK is home to so much beautiful nature, and it’s great to see so many areas that offer families with little ones the opportunity to explore beautiful parks, wildlife areas and nature trails. In an increasingly tech-obsessed world, these spaces are a great way to disconnect from the internet and reconnect with nature.”

The study was conducted by Little Ones London, the UK's leading Nanny, Childcare and Domestic Placement Provider.