School's Out: Things to do with the kids in Manchester

Need some fun things to do with the kids in Manchester this half term? Look no further. Check out our list of adrenaline-pumping, endorphin-flooding, educational, and creative activities.

Skiddle Staff

Last updated: 22nd Jul 2022

Half term is here! Okay, for most, it isn’t quite. But it might as well be. With this in mind, we bet you’re eager to find fun things to do with the kids in Manchester. Well, don’t fret because that’s something we can help you out with! Whether you’ve got active tots or hermit crab teens, you’ll find something that perfectly suits them on our list. 


Let them unleash their inner monkey at Treetop Manchester


Photo: Treetop Manchester on Facebook 

Where: Heaton Park, St Margaret's Rd, Manchester M25 2GT

Here’s one of the best, most active things to do with the kids in Manchester, which means it’ll probably end up with them falling asleep in the car on the way home. What’s not to love? Kids (and adults) over 7 can do the Full Trek, complete with 20 challenging obstacles, while those 5 and over can partake in the Mini Trek. For ages 3+, the Treetop Nets will be excellent with bouncy nets, ballparks, slides, and treehouses. 



Keep their minds active at the Museum of Science and Industry


Photo: Science and Industry Museum on Facebook 

Where: Science and Industry Museum, Liverpool Road, Manchester M3 4FP

Just an FYI, the museum is currently undergoing a huge restoration programme, so some areas may be closed, including the Air and Space Hall, the Power Hall, and the 1830 Station. But there’s still a lot open such as Experiment (an interactive gallery), Amazonia (a photography exhibition), Power UP (a gaming experience), Turn It Up (exploring the science of music), and so much more.  



Enjoy the summer in a park


Photo: Dunham Massey National Trust on Facebook 

Where: multiple locations across Greater Manchester 

With it being all humid and (occasionally) sunny, do you want to be stuck indoors? Neither do we. Unfortunately, the city centre doesn’t have many big parks, but if you’re happy to venture out a bit, there are some lovely ones. Heaton Park is beautiful and has a pretty cool playground (and a Nickelodeon Experience incoming), as does Haigh Woodland Park in Wigan. And for beautiful backdrops for a picnic, Lyme Park in Stockport and Dunham Massey in Cheshire are both perfect. 


Find tickets for outdoor cinema events at Dunham Massey - here



Get their adrenaline pumping at indoor skydiving 


Photo: iFLY Manchester Indoor Skydiving on Facebook 

Where: 9 Trafford Way, Manchester M41 7JA

If you’ve got a little adrenaline junkie on your hands, indoor skydiving will surely brighten their week. Most kids can fly as long as they're at least three years old and under the supervision of an adult. The team are eager to help everyone live out their flying fantasies, even helping those with disabilities and additional needs. If you want to kick it up a notch, they also offer VR headsets that make you feel like you're in the Alps, Dubai, Hawaii, or So Cal.



Start the reading challenge at a local library 


Photo: Summer Reading Challenge on Facebook 

Where: check the Summer Reading Challenge website to see which libraries are taking part 

You’re probably familiar with the Summer Reading Challenge, but in case you aren’t, it serves to keep kids reading over the summer holidays and encourage them to read for pleasure. Children who took part said they felt calmer and happier when reading and pride upon completing the challenge. And, if you need a moment to yourself during the holidays, you can announce “reading time”. But you didn't hear that from us. 



Learn to ski at Chill Factore 


Photo: Chill Factore on Facebook 

Where: 7 Trafford Way, Trafford Park, Stretford, Manchester M41 7JA

Wondering what to do with the kids in Manchester? Here’s a goodun. We haven’t had proper snow in this country for god knows how long, so it’ll be a cracking treat. And during the summer, they’re offering half-price skiing and snowboarding lessons for beginners. But if that isn’t their vibe, the Sledge 'n' Slide, Downhill Doughnuts, and the Ice Slide will surely provide a solid endorphin hit. 



Meet some animal friends 


Photo: Cockfields Farm on Facebook 

Where: multiple locations across Greater Manchester 

Sorry, but how could you say no to that face? And that’s just one of the many adorable, interesting, and enchanting faces to see. There are pigs, elephants, meerkats, jaguars, capybaras, alpacas, geckos, Shetland ponies, flamingos, peafowl, and so much more all over Manchester. Meet them at Lancaster Park and Animal Farm, Chester Zoo, Cockfield's Farm, The Garden House, and other farms and zoos around Greater Manchester. 



Tire them out at Play Factore

Where: Play Factore, 7 Trafford Way, Trafford Quays Leisure Village M41 7JA 

What child can resist the phrase “largest indoor play centre in the UK”? Even we want to go! Play Factore has the largest indoor slide in the UK, the biggest toddler area, interactive ValoJump trampolines that sync up to an on-screen game, and a zip line. Let them experience something new while doing something they love - running around like mad. 



Check out Summer Daze at The Trafford Centre  


Photo: The Trafford Centre on Facebook 

Where: The Trafford Centre, Trafford Park, Stretford, Manchester M17 8AA

From the 22nd of July to the 4th of September, Summer Daze at The Trafford Centre will be offering live music, a funfair, a beach, a splash park, a food and entertainment zone, an outdoor cinema, and live streams of sporting events to the public. With free entry to the outdoor cinema and food and entertainment hub, spending a day at Summer Daze is one of the best free things to do with the kids in Manchester this summer. 


Find tickets for events at The Trafford Centre - here



Inspire them in Manchester's art galleries  


Photo: Manchester Art Gallery on Facebook 

Where: multiple locations across Greater Manchester

Research shows that appreciating art boosts our wellbeing, reduces the effects of stress on our bodies, and can even protect the immune system. And Manchester has many impressive and inspiring art galleries, such as The Lowry, Manchester Art Gallery, and Salford Museum & Art Gallery. And they’re all free to enter! As the holidays are here, you might as well check one or two out. 



Bond as a family at The Crystal Maze LIVE Experience


Photo: The Crystal Maze on Facebook 

Where: The Crystal Maze Studios, Lower Byrom St, Manchester M3 4FP

Kids over 9 years old can tackle the iconic obstacle course The Crystal Maze with the family. Together your team will use your skills and knowledge to beat the maze by solving puzzles and overcoming physical challenges. Navigate through Aztec, Medieval, futuristic, and industrial adventure zones before heading to the Crystal Dome. But remember, the clock is ticking! 



There are loads of great things to do with the kids in Manchester this half term, including activities that you can enjoy, too. With you and the kids happy, how could it not be an amazing summer? 

Never wonder what to do with the kids in Manchester again. Click or tap here for events in Manchester.



Check out our What's On Guide to discover even more rowdy raves and sweaty gigs taking place over the coming weeks and months. For festivals, lifestyle events and more, head on over to our Things To Do page or be inspired by the event selections on our Inspire Me page.








Header: Treetop Manchester on Facebook