One of the things I love about Country Kids is that it has encouraged me to visit lots of new outdoor spaces in my local area. As a result weekends now usually find me racking my brains to think of somewhere new we can visit. A few weeks ago, we decided to visit Rickmansworth Aquadrome, a 41 hectare local nature reserve, about a 30 minutes’ drive away from our house, which sounded like it would be a nice place for a walk.
We started off in the café as we’d arrived at lunchtime and the girls were hungry. The food was a little on the expensive side but was freshly made and very yummy. As we made our way to a vacant table, we walked past a couple of familiar looking faces – two friends of ours from our university days who we hadn’t seen for about ten years! It turned out that they didn’t live in the area either – they were meeting up with family who lived the other side of London and it was the halfway point for them. Although we didn’t get to chat for very long, it was lovely to have a brief catch up again.
Rickmansworth Aqudrome has two lakes – Bury Lake and Batchworth Lake – which were created through extracting gravel which was used to build the original Wembley stadium. I found this fact particularly interesting as the mounds at Northala Fields, another new place we have explored recently, were built from the rubble after that stadium was demolished.
We decided to take a walk around Batchworth Lake and head towards the play area on the other side. It was lovely to watch Jessica and Sophie wandering along, hand in hand, enjoying being able to explore while we kept a careful watch to make sure they didn’t stray off the path and get too close to the water!
As expected, the play area was a big hit with the girls. It is quite interesting to watch them both exploring now and see how different they are in their approach. Sophie has no fear at all and will happily try to climb and explore everything in her path whereas Jessica is much more wary and will hesitate if a bridge is too wobbly or a slide is too high for her liking.
The same is true when they go on the swings, which they both love. Sophie just loves going as high as we are willing to push her whereas Jessica will tell you straight away if you are pushing her too high – “I doesn’t like it, Mummy”- usually quickly followed by a request to get off the swing.
There was an outdoor gym area which hubby enjoyed and Jessica tried to sit on a few of the machines although didn’t seem very sure about it all!
We spent quite a long time in the play area and by the time we left the girls were getting quite tired so we decided just to walk back and retrace our steps to the car park rather than continue the route around the lake. I’ve noticed on the Aquadrome information leaflet that there is an easy access nature trail which sounds like it would be worth exploring next time we visit.
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