We visited Wakehurst in Haywards Heath, Sussex today to meet up with friends for a walk and a picnic in the sunshine. I always think of Wakehurst as Kew’s little sister- not as big or impressive as Kew (in my opinion) but a gorgeous place to visit for a good walk and to spend some time in nature.
This Easter Kew and Wakehurst have the Very Hungry Caterpillar Trail around the gardens. Based on the famous Eric Carle story, children imagine that they are the caterpillar as they eat their way through one apple, two pears… you know the rest… before turning into a butterfly.
The trail is suited to younger children, I think, but my littluns enjoyed the walk and being outdoors in nature. The trail is included in the entry price and there is no Easter-themed treat or reward at the end.
The caterpillar picnic scavenger hunt is £4.50 per child and is an an optional add-on. Children are given a trail sheet and some stickers. They go on a scavenger hunt to find the food items and stick them on their sheet. Once completed, the children receive a Cawston Press juice box and choose either a sticker activity book, colouring book or colouring set. They are good quality prizes but, personally, I wouldn’t pay £4.50 each for it. It was very popular with families and there were lots of young children queuing up with their completed sheet to collect their prize.
The Very Hungry Caterpillar trail runs until 24th April 2022.
We had a lovely walk in the sunshine and the kids enjoyed exploring the woodland and playing with sticks mostly. Climbing trees is a strict no-no (boo) but understandable. It is quite a walk! up and down steep hills and the terrain is tricky at times. Sandals were definitely not a good idea and I could have done with my trainers! There are easier and more accessible paths- some are very tricky for buggies and wheelchairs.
There are cafes and food/drink outlets dotted around and lots of space to play barefoot on the grass. Lots of people take picnics and spend the day.
We love places like this because Eden is in his element outdoors. It’s big enough for people to spread out so never feels crowded. You can always find a quiet spot if you need to and avoid other humans.
Entry to Wakehurst is £14.95 for adults and £7.50 for 17-25 year olds. Under 16s are free. National Trust members can also visit for free and they have lots of concessions for people on benefits, Blue Light Card holders, and disabled people.
Parking is on-site and is included in your ticket price, it is free for Kew/Wakehurst members and £3.50 per day for National Trust Members. We have Kew membership which means we can visit Wakehurst and park for free.
Our final thoughts on the trail itself… perfect for younger children who are familiar with the book- I wouldn’t go out of my way to book it for my 7 and 9 year old- but it is an enjoyable part of a long walk and outdoor play.
I liked swinging around in the cocoon and coming out as a butterfly. I liked playing in the woods and making a sword with a big stick. And I liked my cup of tea.Eden, age 7.
Enjoy your adventures!
Amy and the littluns x