In Britain we are blessed with a fair few bank holidays at this time of year. The most recent of which was beautifully, and somewhat unusually, sunny. We decided to take the kids on a treasure trail around the city. There are a series of downloadable trails set in various locations across the country – we chose a treasure hunt based around Plymouth waterfront. The basic premise was that a fearsome pirate had buried his treasure in a drunken stupor and forgotten where he had left it. It was our job to discover the location of the treasure before ‘Captain Drinksalot’ woke from his slumber. The concept hooked the kids from the beginning and even the younger one (age 4) was enthusiastic from start to finish. Though when legs were tiring towards the end it did help that there was someone dressed as a pirate wondering round the harbour (not unusual in Plymouth!). The kids got a kick out of sneaking past him to figure out the last couple of clues before he found the treasure.
Although we have lived in Plymouth for more than eight years the clues took us to parts of Plymouth we had never seen and caused us to notice things that we would otherwise have overlooked. The walk wasn’t too long and conveniently took us past the perfect picnic spot (beneath Smeaton’s Tower on the Hoe) and in striking distance our favourite ice cream shop selling delicious Langage Farm ice cream. This helped to break up the walk as our children are slightly younger than the intended audience. Unfortunately, two of the clues were missing or inaccessible due to winter storm damage, but a bit of Googling and parental detective work saved the day. It certainly didn’t spoil the experience.
All in all we were out of the house for five hours and the kids were completely knackered by the end of it – I call that a bargain for £6.99!