Fun in the sun

Keeping the kids entertained over weekends and holidays can be a costly time, but nothing inspires young minds – or stretches little legs – like the great outdoors.

It’s the perfect time for kids to be kids – to celebrate the joy and freedom of their pre-teen years after months being cooped up for the winter.

TK Maxx is encouraging parents across the UK to head into the great outdoors and is offering a list of the best locations to enjoy a family bonding day out at low cost or free.

These include:

4. Beaches in Nairn, Morayshire – A superb sandy beach with beautiful views across the Moray Firth to the Black Isles and its coastline is home to a resident school of dolphins!

5. Exploring Glencoe - A popular filming location where children can run around surrounded by the beautiful Scottish countryside. The eagle-eyed might even spot a famous wizard’s house…

6. Marwell Zoo, Winchester – Explore this 140 acre park and get closer to the wonders of the natural world, with 100s of animals to get up close with!

7. Lepe Beach and BBQ area – Stroll through the wild flowers, see who can spot the most beautiful birds or visit the historic remains from the D-Day landing before hiring a BBQ to enjoy on the beach.

8. West Wittering Beach, Chichester – Splash around in the beautiful oceans and build sandcastles on the shores of one of the premier Blue Flag beaches in the country, with wonderful views of Chichester Harbour and the South Downs.

9. Canoe Lake – Fly down the zip wire, build sandcastles or hire a canoe and take to the lake to feed the swans.

0. Moors Valley – Enjoy a peaceful walk or cycle ride through the Forest, experience a ride on an authentic narrow-gauge steam train or Go Ape on a high wire forest adventure swinging through the tree tops.

11. Castle Fraser, Kemnay - One of Scotland's largest tower houses. Let young imaginations run free in the Woodland Secrets play area whilst the adults enjoy an impressive portrait collection.

12. Haddo House, Ellon – Pretend to be lords and ladies as you take a tour around the home of the story-rich Gordon family, who lived here for more than 400 years.

13. Loch Morlich, Glenmore, Aviemore - Scotland's only fresh water award winning beach, perfect for little ones who like to splash around, and for loch side forest walks.

14. Bennachie Nature Trail, Inverurie – Tell them folk tales of the people who lived in the hills and fought off devils and giants.

15. Rufus Stone, New Forest – Take a picturesque walk and visit the historic Rufus Stone, the spot where King William II was fatally wounded with an arrow, during a royal hunting outing in the Forest, in the year 1100AD.

16. Doonies Farm, Aberdeen – Show the kids beautiful farmland, home to many endangered breeds of British Livestock that are at risk of extinction.

17. Den and The Glen, Aberdeen – Explore the park’s wonderful waterfalls and gardens, and keep an eye out for the fairy-tale and nursery rhyme characters scattered about.

18. Hazlehead Park, Aberdeen – Get lost in the maze, smell the beautiful blooms in the rose garden, play make-believe in the play area or stroke the park’s furry friends at Pets Corner.

19. Portsmouth Historic Dockyard - Explore historic ships, including Lord Nelson's flagship HMS Victory, Queen Victoria's HMS Warrior 1860 and the only surviving ship from the First World War's Gallipoli Campaign, HMS M.33