Families in Plymouth are in for a treat this weekend, with the start of not just one but two fun and festive trails.
Little (and big) ones will love going in search of both polar bears and penguins around the city as part of the city’s Christmas offering.
If the success of the Elmer the Elephant Parade over the summer was anything to go by, families will be all over these trails, which both start this weekend.
City trails see penguins return
You may remember them from last year (my four year old certainly does), but the adorable penguins are back. But that’s not the best bit. If you’re four, then the best bit is – THEY’RE MADE OF LEGO!!
It’ll be the final year the penguins are in Plymouth, so make the most of it and pick up a trail map as soon as possible.
From Saturday November 30, there will be 19 life size Lego brick penguins and one spectacular Emperor Penguin hidden in shops and cafes across the city centre.
The trail cards can be collected from each participating business, Drake Circus Shopping Centre, libraries and the Tourist Information Centre, or they can be downloaded from the Visit Plymouth website.
Trails are fun for all the family
Steve Hughes, Chief Executive of Plymouth City Centre Company, said: “I’m really looking forward to seeing families, friends and school groups enjoying our unique LEGO brick penguin trail again this year. We had such a fantastic response to last year’s trail, and it’s a great way for the whole family to explore the city’s retail offer, whilst taking part in this family-fun activity.
“It is brilliant to see the retailers really getting behind this campaign too, and I’m looking forward to seeing their penguins as part of their Christmas window displays. These wonderful life size LEGO brick penguins really do bring something special to our city centre. This will be the last year we have them so make sure you don’t miss the opportunity to take part.”
The trail will run until Sunday January 5, 2020, giving five weeks to spot all 20 penguin names and add them to the trail card, or enter online at Visit Plymouth.
If you fill in your form and send it in by January 15, you can be in with a chance to win some awesome prizes. These include a weekend family trip to LEGOLAND Windsor Resort, courtesy of Plymouth Citycoach, or a Penguin Feeding Experience at Living Coasts for four people. I think my boys would wet themselves with excitement over both!
Kids can be polar bear explorers
But if you’re not content with just Lego penguins, you can also become a Polar Bear Explorer on a second trail also starting this weekend. This one will take you on an adventurous journey along Plymouth’s waterfront searching for cute polar bear cubs.
From the Royal William Yard to Millbay, the Barbican to Sutton Harbour and Bretonside, you’ll find the cubs hidden in a variety of shops, restaurants and businesses.
The Polar Bear Explorer starts on December 1 and runs until March 1, so you’ve got plenty of time to find the 20 cubs, whether you set off to search over Christmas, during February half term or any time in between.
To become a Polar Bear Explorer, pick up a trail booklet from participating retailers or download from Visit Plymouth. Inside, you’ll find a comic strip, telling the story of George the Polar Bear cub and how climate change is affecting his environment in a way that is easy for children to understand and relate to.
Each section of the comic book is missing a key word, which you’ll be able to fill in when you find the matching polar bear cub.
Chance to learn about the environment
As well as learning all about the environment, and how you can help real polar bears, there are some brilliant prizes to win depending on if you find five, 10 or all 20 bears.
There’s also one very special golden bear cub – when you find him, snap a selfie and make a pledge to do one thing to help the environment, then share using #GoldenPolarPledge.
You can enter the competition by finding the bears and posting your completed trail form in the trail post-boxes at the Tourist Information Centre, Bistrot Pierre and National Marine Aquarium or submitting it online through the Visit Plymouth website. Don’t forget to share your photos using #PolarBearExplorer.
If these fabulous trails weren’t enough, and you want to know what else is going on in and around Plymouth this Christmas including the best grottos, Santa trains, fairs and parties, have a read of my Ultimate Family Guide to Christmas here.
How did I do?
Did you enjoy this post? If it’s got you all Christmassy, why not read some of my other festive posts. Try Why A Visit to Bluestone’s Christmasland Is A Must For Families, or Christmas Tradition Ideas To Start With Your Family. Or if you like a good-humoured honest rant about parenting, go to my Mum Life section for a giggle.
If you like a bit of social media madness, pop over to my Facebook page where you’ll be able to have a laugh at what ridiculousness goes on in my house with three very small boys on a daily basis. Warning – there is often sarcasm, and usually swearing. There are also great travel reviews and some AWESOME giveaways. Feel free to join my Twins, Tantrums and Cold Coffee – Shits and Giggles Parenting Group too, where everyone shares their hilarious stories.
And if you want to work with me, feel free to give me a shout here or at firstname.lastname@example.org and I’ll get back to you.