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    Super day with the kids at Cowley Manor

    Well… I don’t even really know where to start. We went to one of my all-time favourite hotels expecting to enjoy a delicious afternoon tea with the kids as part of our #SummerOf17 #Staycation in the Cotswolds. We left 5 hours later having had the most amazing afternoon of catching frogs, newts and lizards, exploring the woods and the secret gardens that inspired Lewis Carroll to write Alice in Wonderland, walking around the lakes seeing birds and nests and swans… and having that delicious afternoon tea too. It was magic.. no less.

     

    The secret garden

    We arrived two hours early for our afternoon tea. Having been to Cowley Manor several times without the kids, I knew there was the lovely lake and garden where we could take a stroll, the lawns where the kids could run around and the hammocks where we could lounge about and enjoy the wait. We arrived and were greeted by the lovely receptionist who straight away led us outside in the sunshine while telling us about the secret garden where Lewis Carroll supposedly were inspired to write Alice in Wonderland. And I bet he did, because it is truly magical and a wonderland for the kids to run around in for sure.

     

    New friends and frogs

    We had only just scratched the surface of these magical gardens when the kids made friends with another set of siblings who was finding, catching and collecting (to release later, of course) frogs, newts and lizards by the river in the centre of the garden. And that was it, they were off exploring, searching for creatures and having a super time with their new friends.

     

    Circus fun and games

    With about half an hour until we were due to go in to enjoy our afternoon tea, a wonderful children’s circus entertainer appeared on the lawn and he started showing the kids circus tricks. In half an hour the kids had learnt to spin plates and roll balls and lots more children had joined them on the lawn, lots more friends to have fun with.

     

    Delicious afternoon tea

    We had to interrupt the plate-spinning fun to go inside to enjoy the scheduled afternoon tea. The kids reluctantly joined us (there was just too much fun to be had outside!) but when the delightful tower of scones sandwiches and mouthwatering cakes arrived, they had to admit it was all worth it, of course. It was truly scrumptious, service was fantastic (no request was too much) and the lounge where we enjoyed this afternoon treat was beautiful. The perfect afternoon tea, in fact.

     

    Beautiful views from the hammocks

    But not even an extra slice of cake could make the kids hang around for longer, there was fun to be had outside still and off they went. We ended the afternoon in the hammocks, enjoying a relaxing time with the most stunning views of the garden on one side, the hotel on the other and the visit from the kids every 10 or so minutes telling us what wonderful treasures they had found, what fun they’d had and what new friends they had made.

     

    A new level of child-friendly

    Never have we been in a hotel like this where the kids have not only been welcomed and entertained, but truly encouraged to experience, enjoy and have great time. At 6 o’clock it wad time to leave and the kids left reluctantly and only when we promised we would definitely come back again soon. And we sure will, what a wonderful, perfect, fun and fabulous afternoon we had at Cowley Manor.