Tin Box Baby at The Piece Hall Halifax - accommodation in Hebden Bridge, Yorkshire
Blogging, Family travel

Tin Box Traveller family travel diaries: October 2018

So October was an exciting and busy month: I won an award, road tripped 700 miles around England and was interviewed about blogging on BBC Radio Devon! On top of that we spent a weekend in Hampshire seeing family and friends.

If that sounds non-stop I can tell you it felt like it too. Mr Tin Box is working away and my top tactic for getting through Royal Navy deployments is to keep ploughing on. So expect things to be pretty busy around here for the next few months.

All the hard work seems to be paying off in the blogging world though. The award I won was a Britmums Brilliance in Blogging Award 2018 in the Travel category. There were some superb family travel blogs in the final line up so I feel humbled to be plucked from among them.

This led to the interview on BBC Radio Devon alongside fellow local bloggers Hayley from Sparkles & Stretchmarks and Pip from The Slimming Foodie. They also won their categories in the BiBs. We chatted about our blogs, how they came about and what it takes to be a ‘digital influencer’. If you’re quick you can hear the full show on the iPlayer – just skip one hour into the recording (expires 28 November 2018). Here we are at the Beeb before going live on air.

Devon Bloggers BBC Radio Devon - family travel blog October 2018

So, let’s look at what else we got up to in October.

Favourite trip of October

We stayed in four different English counties in October: Hampshire, Gloucester, Yorkshire and Wiltshire, as well as in our home county of Devon.

Two of these destinations – Yorkshire and Wiltshire – we visited as part of organised press trips over half term, so we could experience what the areas have to offer families. Two days in each location was definitely not enough but we still managed to cram in plenty of sights and experiences. I’ll be sharing more on each of these places soon but here’s a taster from Instagram:

 

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[AD] What a reward for a 300 mile trip north to Calderdale in Yorkshire: a bevvy of beautiful views (have a scroll)! We arrived yesterday and have the rest of the weekend to explore with Visit Calderdale. But first we couldn’t resist a walk into town from our characterful cottage to check out quirky and scenic Hebden Bridge. It’s a hub of independent shops, fair trade eateries and bohemian life nestled in the Pennies. Have you been? 📸 📸 📸 📸 #VisitCalderdale #HebdenBridge #valley #view #Yorkshire #ukftb #familytravel #familytravelblog #trips100 #ftb100 #ukexplore #tinboxyorkshire #VisitYorkshire #travelherenext #travelmomentswithkids #adventure #wetravelmums #familytravelmoment #explorerkids #curiouslittleexplorers #tinytravels

A post shared by Claire – Tin Box Traveller (@tinboxtraveller) on

 

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[AD] Yesterday we went on two tours of Salisbury: one around the city centre to explore some of its history and ghostly hot spots; and a second around the magnificent 13th Century Cathedral. . I loved the Cathedral – it has swiftly been added to my ‘must visit again’ list! Plus there’s so much to see in Cathedral Close including former Prime Minister Edward Heath’s House, Mompesson House which featured in the film Sense and Sensibility, and the Rifles Berkshire and Wiltshire military museum. That’s not to mention an original manuscript of the Magna Carta dating from 1215. . Next year the city of Salisbury turns 800 years old so there really is no better time to visit. Keep an eye on @visitwiltshire for special celebratory events in 2019. . PS . I’ve not been paid to come to Wiltshire but Visit Wiltshire have kindly organised our activities, accommodation and meals during our stay. . . . . #Salisbury #SalisburyCathedral #VisitWiltshire #Wiltshire #ukftb #familytravel #familytravelblog #trips100 #ftb100 #ukexplore #tinboxwiltshire #travel #VisitEngland #PrettyLittleEngland #wearetravelmums #familytravelmoment #explorerkids #curiouslittleexplorers #tinytravels #MyFamilyWanderlust #SnapHappyBritmums #Cathedral #cloisters #timeforwiltshire

A post shared by Claire – Tin Box Traveller (@tinboxtraveller) on

Every stage of our 700 mile road trip had magic moments but if I had to pick one that stood out it would be visiting Calderdale in Yorkshire. This is were got to meet up with family who we don’t often see. We also stayed in a lovely holiday cottage in the quirky town of Hebden Bridge and spent a fun day in Halifax. You can read more about our far too short weekend in Yorkshire here[AD].

I can’t lie; the road trip was exhausting. Even though I had the much needed help of my parents at each destination I was driving solo with the girls the whole way. Cue motorway service station loo stops aplenty and a fair few shouty mummy moments!

If I were to pick the best part of our half term for relaxing it would be our final few days at Andrewshayes Holiday Park in East Devon. Our friend Clare from FlipFlops or Wellies is an owner at the park and suggested we pop in for a stay after I gave her some social media advice. It was the perfect respite from a super busy week with lots of pool, hot tub and PJ time.

Tot and Baby Andrewshayes pool

Having mentioned that Mr Tin Box is away with work, it hasn’t all been toil and trouble for him. He did manage to get 24 hours off duty in Iceland. I’m guessing this was his favourite trip of the month. Have you been?

 

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Dad’s gone to Iceland! While the girls and I were road tripping in the UK during October half term Mr Tin Box was floating around the Arctic Circle. How did he get away with leaving us behind I hear you ask? Well, this trip was actually a work one with the Royal Navy rather than a holiday. But he still managed to get 24 hours in Iceland in-between the serious stuff. Over on the blog (link in bio) you’ll find his advice on the must see sights from Reykjavik if you are time challenged like him! 🏔 🏔 🏔 🏔 #Travel #trips100 #writetotravel #lonelyplanet #visiting #24hours #shortbreak #VisitIceland #snow #mountains #traveltips #travelawesome #itinerary #exploringtheglobe #familytravelblog #familytravel #travelinspiration #Iceland #travelgram #traveltheworld #adventure #ftb100 #ukftb #welivetoexplore #traveltheworld #wearetraveldads #ilovetravel #landscape #Nordic

A post shared by Claire – Tin Box Traveller (@tinboxtraveller) on

Favourite day trip of October

There were definitely plenty of brilliant days out in October too, which is no mean feat as the weather changed tack dramatically as the month rolled on. I think the girls would say their favourite days out were to Winchester Science Museum with their cousins in Hampshire and to the Eureka! National Children’s Museum in Halifax – both excellent all-weather family attractions.

 

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Storm Troopers ✔️ science ✔️ and loads of wet day fun ✔️. Why have we never been to Winchester Science Centre before?! We’re in Hampshire visiting family (with Mr TB – yay!), and with the typical autumn weather needed somewhere to entertain the kids and avoid the showers. The Science Centre comes highly recommended if you find yourself in the same boat! The Storm Troopers and other cosplay Star Wars characters are back at the attraction tomorrow (7 October) to help celebrate Science Week. Also, if you’re in Hampshire over October half term there’s plenty of additional activities on, plus a brand new live action planetarium show ‘You Are Here’. 🛰 ⭐️ 🔬 🌎 #Winchester #VisitWinchester #WinchesterScienceCentre #ukftb #familytravel #familytravelblog #trips100 #ftb100 #ukexplore #tinboxhampshire #travelherenext #familytravelmoment #explorerkids #curiouslittleexplorers #tinytravels #Hampshire #VisitHampshire #familydayout #STEM #Science #brightsparks #kidfriendly #illuminatedchildhood #howyougrow

A post shared by Claire – Tin Box Traveller (@tinboxtraveller) on

My favourite day out was visiting Stonehenge in Wiltshire and I think the girls quite liked this too. I hadn’t visited since I was a kid and the whole experience has been made so much more relatable. The Visitor Centre exhibition, 360 Stonehenge simulation and recreated ancient houses really brought the history to life. We also visited on the 100th anniversary of Stonehenge being given to the nation so there was an extra attraction: Sacrilege – an inflatable replica of the ancient monument.

I’ll be writing more about our Visit Wiltshire press trip in the coming weeks.

Tot at inflatable stonehenge

What’s everyone reading?

Christmas is already dominating my blog views with my UK festive events post going down a storm. Also very popular in October 2018 was my #WanderlustWish dream USA road trip itinerary [AD] which I shared as part of a campaign with Brand USA.

Coming up next…

I’ve got a solo trip coming up to World Travel Market at the Excel in London where I’ll be meeting up with holiday brands to chat about what they have to offer families in 2019. This will be swiftly followed by a weekend away to review the Waterside lodge resort [AD] in Cornwall with Tin Box Nana and Grandad – I can’t wait!

Then Christmas really is just around the corner! We’ll be kicking things off with a special preview of Woodlands Family Theme Park’s Santa’s Grotto[AD], which we loved last year.

Don’t forget I’ve relaunched my regular newsletter. I’m sending it out every few weeks and each one has a theme. So far I’ve covered our summer adventures and half term fun. Let me know if there’s a particular topic you’d like me to share next. If you’re not already signed up then pop your details in the form here.

Whatever adventures are coming your way next, have a fabulous time!

As ever, thank for reading and don’t forget to follow me on Bloglovin’TwitterFacebookInstagramPinterestYoutubeGoogle+ and LinkedIn.

*Disclosure: this post also contains links to content where we have been sent something for free to review it or have been on an unpaid press trip during which we have produced blog posts and other content for a brand.