Magical wetland reserve is perfect for a family day out bird spotting

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-Credit: (Image: Midweek Vister)

The Slimbridge Wetland Centre, a wetland reserve nestled between Bristol and Gloucester, offers an exciting family day out filled with bird spotting and wildlife safaris. Located on the Eastern estuary of the River Severn, the centre hosts a variety of events and activities that are perfect for children who have a keen interest in nature.

For those passionate about wildlife spotting, now is an excellent time to visit the reserve. Recently, several birds have been observed forming post-breeding flocks, including Green Sandpipers, Lapwing, Teal and Curlew.

The reserve boasts 13 hides, providing optimal vantage points for spotting the diverse species seen throughout the year. The Estuary Tower Hide is equipped with a lift, and the heated Peng Observatory hosts commentated feeds daily at around 4pm, as reports Bristol Live.

For the more adventurous, the Canoe Safari Trail is a must-visit. Canoes can be hired for £10 and can accommodate three people. If you're paddling alone, you can test your skills in an ancient coracle boat.

Open until late summer, the Summer Walkway allows visitors to explore the sights and inhabitants of the Severn Estuary, including amphibians, dragonflies and butterflies. The walkway is wheelchair accessible, and children can learn through fact-finding missions and fun challenges on the free 'Wetland Heroes' app while exploring the centre.

Children also have the opportunity to visit the Tundra Hut, where they can immerse themselves in the role of an Arctic researcher. They can take on the persona of a birdwatcher, using binoculars and telescopes to identify various species.

Slimbridge is conveniently situated near the M5, between Bristol and Gloucester, boasting a spacious, free car park equipped with six electric vehicle charging points.

The Kingfisher Kitchen, located on-site, is open daily, along with a shop offering gifts, books, toys and bird care items. For those wishing to extend their visit, overnight stays are available at Bewick's Lodge, part of the former residence of Wildfowl and Wetlands Trust's founder Sir Peter Scott.

Admission prices are £17.22 for adults, £11.36 for juniors, and £15.40 for students, individuals aged 65+ or those who are unemployed. Entry is free for children under four and carers assisting disabled visitors.

Membership to the Wetland Wildlife Trust starts from £4.50 a month for one adult, providing access to all ten sites across the country, including Slimbridge. Family memberships are also available at £7.25 a month.