10 best family days out in Farnham, Surrey

by Jan

Planning a family day out in Farnham, Surrey?  Well you won’t be stuck for choice.  With fantastic outdoor spaces, wildlife, history and art, Farnham offers plenty of things to do with kids.  We have picked some of our favourites. And best of all, they are all outdoors, so ideal for social-distancing.

Farnham is a historic market town in Surrey, South-East England. With its Georgian houses, cobbled streets and 12th Century castle, Farnham has a very traditional look.  Yet, it has a young vibrant feel about it and there are plenty of attractions for families.

Farnham Treasure Trail

Boys finding clues on Farnham treasure trail

One of the best ways to explore Farnham town and environs is to follow a self-guided Treasure Trail.  There is a choice of two treasure trails in Farnham, one for the castle and town and one for the Maltings & meadows.  The kids chose the latter.

Firstly, the trail took us on a route out of town and across the local parks and nearby meadows.  Later, we returned to town and even took a detour to Farnham Castle for lunch.

In total, we had 20 clues to solve, most of which were on plaques and commemorative signs around town.  It was good fun and we certainly deserved our smoothie and homemade carrot cake on our return.

We were gifted our Farnham Treasure Trail but had bought one previously for a Murder Mystery trail in Wimbledon.

Postcode:  GU9 7PS

Alice Holt Forest

Gruffalo walk Alice Holt, Farnham, Surrey

One of our all-time favourite family days out near Farnham is at Alice Holt Forest.  Just 4 miles South of Farnham, this is a perfect place for getting the kids outdoors and active.  With woodland walks, cycle paths and large adventure playground, there’s loads to entertain the family.

Plus, if you’ve got younger kids, they will love the animal play structures and Gruffalo trail.  Follow the trail to find life-size wooden sculptures of the Gruffalo and his friends around the forest.

Postcode:  GU10 4LS

Go Ape (Alice Holt)

Go ape. Alice Holt, view of walking trails in trees

Alternatively, if you’re looking for some tree top adventures, Farnham has a Go Ape centre at Alice Holt.  You can choose from a treetop adventure or treetop challenge, depending on their size.  The kids love climbing across the tree top obstacles and whizzing back to ground on a zip line.

Postcode:  GU10 4LS

Rural Life Centre

Rural Living Museum, Surrey

Set in 10 acres of Surrey countryside, the Rural Life Living Museum at Farnham is not your usual museum.  The museum showcases the history of village life in the countryside in days gone by and has over 40 000 artefacts on display.

There is plenty to see and the kids loved wandering inside and out to look at the different exhibitions.  Our family favourites included the old farming tools, a visit to a Victorian classroom and the 1920s holiday chalet.   However, top of this list was hiding in a WWII air raid bunker.

Postcode:  GU10 2DL

RSPB Farnham Heath Nature Reserve

RSPB Boys walking on nature trail at Nature Reserve, Farnham

Now, if you’ve still got energy after your visit to the Rural Life Centre, head next door to the RSPB Nature Reserve.  Here you’ll find a choice of three family-friendly waymarked trails which follow through the woods.  Keep your eyes out for birds and other wildlife that come to visit.

Postcode:  GU10 2DL

Surrey Sculpture Park

sculpture of strange little man with walking stick

A visit to Surrey Sculpture Park is one of the quirkier family days out near Farnham.  Where else could you find 650 art pieces in an arboretum?

You have a choice of 4 trails to follow and quite honestly you’ll find art at every corner.  On the pathways, in the lake and hanging from the trees!

Furthermore, the art comes in all sizes, big and small.  Nothing is off limits, so expect to find trees made of old boots, giant bronze bugs and lots of skeletons!

Postcode:  GU10 2LH

Waverley Abbey

view of Waverley Abbey ruins, multiple arched windows, Surrey

Waverley Abbey was originally built for monks over 900 years ago.  It now lays in ruins in a meadow outside Farnham.  However, some of the walls are standing and information boards are available to help you see what it would have been like in the 12th Century.

It’s a pretty walk to reach the abbey and on a good day, you can take a picnic.

Postcode:  GU9 8EP

Frensham Ponds

Children at Frensham Pond family walk, Surrey

Frensham Ponds is as near to a beach as you will find in Surrey. The larger of the 2 ponds has a sandy beach and in summer, you can bathe in the water.  Alternatively, both ponds are a great place for a family walk.

You can walk around the ponds or across the nearby heathland.  Look out for birds and wildlife.

Postcode:  GU10 2QB (Frensham Great Pond)

North Downs Way

Signs for North Downs Way

Another option for a family walk in Farnham is the North Downs Way.  This trail goes for 153 miles to Dover, but obviously you don’t need to do it all in one go!  The unlikely start for this long-distance walk is by the train station in Farnham.

Postcode:  GU10 4LD


Another of the great family days out in Farnham for animal lovers is a trip to Birdworld.  Not far from Alice Holt, Birdworld is the UK’s biggest bird park.  As well as over 600 birds, children can enjoy the animal farm and the Underwater World Aquarium.  There is also a chance to see the birds in action at the flying displays.

Postcode:  GU10 4LD

Please check the Birdworld website for restrictions in place due to Covid-19.


Getting to Farnham

Farnham is close to the towns of Guildford and Farnborough.

It is easily accessible from the A31.

Travel by train to Farnham

It takes just over an hour to get to Farnham by train from London.  Trains leave from London Waterloo and you have to change at Woking.

From here, it is 5 minutes’ walk to the town centre.

Have you been on any of these family days out in Farnham?  Please feel free to comment below.

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