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Beat the January Blues With Plans for February Half Term in Scotland

Beat the January Blues With Plans for February Half Term in Scotland

From wildlife, stargazing, historic castles to magic, there are plenty of great ideas for days out in Scotland to keep kids of all ages entertained this half term. Also, with accommodation to suit all budgets, why not make a week of it?
Wrap up warm, but bring sunglasses, and remember to refer to the Scottish Outdoor Access Code when out and about.
Outdoor fun

Wondrous Woodlands at RSPB Lochwinnoch Nature Reserve

RSPB Lochwinnoch Nature Reserve, Largs Road, Lochwinnoch, Renfrewshire

1 – 29 February 2024

Explore the woodlands of RSPB Lochwinnoch as part of this fun activity. Discover wildlife such as whooper swans, wigeon, goldeneye and a wide variety of other ducks. Complete the challenges and learn all about our woodlands on the journey. Pop into the visitor centre to collect some goodies and get involved in this fun challenge for kids of all ages.


Price: £3.50 per activity pack. Dogs welcome on footpaths if kept on lead (refer to the Scottish Outdoor Access Code).

Stargazing at Mugdock Country Park

Mugdock Country Park Milngavie, Mugdock (near Glasgow)

Tuesday, 13 February 2024, 7-9pm

Look up and search the skies. Learn some fascinating facts about space, try out some constellation craftwork then head outside and look at the night sky to spot Jupiter and Mars on this two-hour adventure with the Ranger Service.

Price: £7 (min. age 7 years). No dogs allowed except guide dogs. / 0141 956 6100


Outdoor Explorers: Rockets

Our Dynamic Earth, Edinburgh

Tuesday, 13 February 2024 (10.30am and 2pm; session lasts 2 hours).

Did you know that you can cause a spectacular rocket launch out of nothing but paper? Or that a humble vitamin C tablet can help create a fizzing, whizzing blast-off? Come along to the Our Dynamic Earth Outdoor Family Programme to find out all about rockets. With help from the Learning and Engagement Team visitors can design, create and launch rockets from the ‘space port’ of the day from Holyrood Park, Edinburgh. Finishing off with a jaw-dropping water rocket launch, it’s an out of this world adventure not to be missed.

Price: £5


Rainy day pursuits

Kids’ Castle Tour and Crafts, Crathes Castle, Aberdeenshire

Monday, 12 & Tuesday, 13 February 2024

Enjoy a tour of the castle designed specifically for children with fun facts and focusing on The Mythical beasts throughout. This will be followed by a fun craft session in Cafe 1702. This event is aimed at age group 4-11 years. (Approximate tour time 30-40mins).

Price: Child’s Ticket: £5.00; Adult: £15.50

(Please note due to the historic nature of the castle this event is not suitable for buggies or wheelchairs.)


Magic Circus by Magic Den, Glasgow

Scottish Mask and Puppet Centre, Glasgow

Sunday, 11 February 2024

Magic Den presents The Magic Circus: An exciting, fun, fast-paced and colourful magic show for all the family.

There will also be Craft Activity Colour-in and Cut-Out Puppets and Masks in the café from 10am before and after the show. Lots of designs to choose from mermaids, sharks, butterflies, dragons, rabbits with all materials provided

Price: Child, £6.95; adult £7.95


Unique visitor attractions


Camera Obscura and World of Illusions, Edinburgh

Award-winning visitor attraction with 360° views of the city. Venture through five floors jam-packed with over 100 illusions.  Camera Obscura and World of Illusions received the Innovation in Tourism Award at the Scottish Thistle Awards 2023.

Price: Adult: £21.95; child: £16.95; Students & senior citizen: £19.95; under-5s free. Dog-friendly visitor attraction.

RRS Discovery, Dundee

This award-winning visitor attraction tells the story of the iconic ship ‘Discovery’ from her beginnings in Dundee, her amazing Antarctic expedition with Captain Scott and her voyages and uses thereafter.  Through extensive galleries, video and film shows, interactives and artefacts, Discovery Point is a fascinating visitor attraction which appeals to all ages.

Price: Adult: £17; Child: £9.50; Concession: £13.00; Family: £46.50.

Cairngorm Reindeer Centre

Home to Britain’s only herd of free-ranging reindeer, there are currently around 150 reindeer in the herd, mostly ranging on the Cairngorm Mountains with the remainder on the Glenlivet Estate.  The Shop is open daily (except Jan-early Feb) and there is a daily guided Hill Trip to see the reindeer. During the Winter, the Hill Trip is weather permitting.

Price: Hill Trip Prices: Adults (17+): £23; Students/Seniors (65+): £19.50; Children (3-16): £16; Age 2 and under are free. Please note that the Centre will reopen for the season on Saturday, 10 February 2024. However, the Paddocks and Exhibition will remain closed for refurbishment, hopefully reopening late summer/autumn 2024.


Offers and free things to do


Historic Environment Scotland – Come along on the first Sunday of every month until March 2024 and get free entry to iconic sites across Scotland.


Helix: Home of the Kelpies

Location of the world’s largest equine sculptures, the Kelpies, which - standing at 100ft tall and weighing more than 300 tonnes each - are a man-made wonder and a feat of engineering.  With plenty of routes for walking and cycling, there is also a visitor centre, an adventure play park (with accessible equipment), splash play water fountains, parklands, woodlands, wetlands and boardwalks, and a lagoon with a cosy coffee shop on its shore.

Price: free to visit (dogs welcome, although not in the visitor centre).

The Burrell Collection, Glasgow

Winner of Art Fund Museum of the Year 2023, as well as winner of the Scottish Thistles Awards 2023 Best Visitor Attraction, The Burrell Collection holds a staggering 9,000 objects. Highlights include one of the most significant holdings of Chinese art in the UK, medieval treasures including stained glass, arms and armour and over 200 tapestries which rank amongst the finest in the world, and paintings by renowned French artists including Manet, Cezanne and Degas.

Price: free to visit.



Arden Holiday Cottage, Dumfries and Galloway**

Irongray, Dumfries DG2 9SQ

Arden Holiday Cottage has everything needed for a relaxing break: a beautiful cottage in a rural setting ideally situated for rambling, bird watching, cycling, climbing, horse riding and exploring.  More than this, they also have an Escape Room activity The Frightful Fairies of Arden Cottage, perfectly suited for younger guests aged 6—10 years. They also offer a Meet the Horses activity, meditation, reiki and Malish Indian head massages. Arden Holiday Cottage won Best Self Catering Accommodation Experience at the Scottish Thistle Awards 2023.

Price: 4 nights stay for £320.  The cottage sleeps five people comfortably with a double, twins, single room, bathroom, and a separate toilet and shower room.  They can also provide a travel cot for the little ones. / 07896 101106


The Four Sisters Boatels, Edinburgh**

Gilmore Bank, Lochrin Basin Ln, Edinburgh EH3 9QP

The Four Sisters Boatels are in the very heart of Edinburgh city centre, tucked away in Lochrin Basin on The Union Canal alongside some of Edinburgh’s top restaurants and bars. A stay on board The Four Sisters Boatels is not only unique but relaxing, peaceful and tranquil. Each boat is uniquely designed to maximize space and enjoyment. A luxury, wide beam houseboat that is permanently moored, it can be hired for up to 5 adults and 2 children under 10 yrs.


Price: from £480 for two nights, minimum two nights’ stay, which would accommodate up to five people. Other options available for more people. Price quoted is for the entire boat for sole use. / tel: 07445 494331


Newton Farm Holidays, Angus**

Newton Of Fothringham Farm,

Inverarity, Forfar, Angus, DD8 2JU

Rest and revive with a farm holiday on a tranquil, authentic, working farm. Savour the flavours of Angus before touring the farm, then explore the nature trails and find the hidden gems of Angus.

Newton of Fothringham is a farm with a difference. In the peaceful, idyllic setting of Angus, Scotland, lies the traditional, working, family run farm that offers a well-deserved break in the farmhouse bed and breakfast or self-catering cottage.

Price: Rooms from £150 per night, see website for more information. Pets are welcome with prior arrangement. / tel: (01307) 820229


Cowden Farm Holidays, Aberdeenshire**

Cowden Farm, Drumlithie, Aberdeenshire

Cowden Farmhouse lies in a uniquely peaceful and private setting, in the heart of a family farm on the east coast of Scotland. Whilst its location has the feeling of ‘getting away from it all’, the many award-winning eateries, fantastic beach, one of Scotland’s most photographed castles (Dunnottar Castle), and the UK’s most northerly lido are just a short distance away. The only neighbours are a herd of Icelandic horses and there is a lovely walk, accessed from the front lawn - ideal for children or dogs to have a run around.

Price: 3 nights - £200 per night; 4-6 nights - £190 per night; 7 nights - £180 per night.

(These rates all apply to booking with parties up to 7 guests.  The property can accommodate up to 10 guests by prior arrangement - rates available on request. Maximum stay 14 days except by prior arrangement). / tel: 07712 436981


Laggan Glamping, Newtonmore, Highlands**

Tigh an Each B&B & Laggan Glamping

Balgowan, Laggan, Newtonmore, Inverness-shire, PH20 1BS

Laggan glamping pods are the perfect place to stay to enjoy the incredible Highland landscape or a break from the hustle and bustle of everyday life. The picturesque Loch Laggan is only a 20-minute drive away and there are plenty of things to do in and around the villages of Laggan, Newtonmore & Aviemore.

Price: from £134 per night / tel: (01528) 985050


Getting there

The Caledonian Sleeper train provides overnight travel between London and stations in Scotland with a lowland route to Edinburgh and Glasgow, as well as a Highland route with destinations including Aberdeen, Fort William and Inverness. Offering interconnecting cabins, infants aged between 0 and 4 are permitted to travel free of charge with a paying accompanying adult. Bespoke family tickets are available to all guests travelling with children on any route. The ticket offers a saving of up to 33%, making a Caledonian Sleeper experience even more affordable for all the family. Small pets are also welcome. For more information, and to book a new adventure, visit


LNER offers discounted travel for families with savings of up to 54%. Go to for more information and to book.


ScotRail: Travel around Scotland with ScotRail’s Kids for a Quid*** offer where kids can hop on board for just £1 with a paying adult. Go to for more information and to book.


For more information on Great Days Out in Scotland, please visit

For more information on accommodation to book for a trip to Scotland, please visit: