The weather was so beautiful last weekend that I didn’t want to stay in London (plus there was a Saharan dust cloud hanging around for the past few days that was making the air quality pretty bad – yuck). We didn’t want to drive too far away, so a quick Google search came up with Dinton Pastures Country Park in Wokingham. As this was estimated to be one hour’s drive away from south west London, and looked pretty nice on the website, we thought we would take a chance and go.
Although there is boating, fishing and disc golf, we went to Dinton Park for the playground. And it is a mighty fine play park. Most of the ‘equipment’ is made from timber, with mainly grass or sand on the ground, so there is a lovely natural feel. I expected the playground to be packed on a Saturday afternoon, but it wasn’t too busy (especially compared to our local parks at the weekends). My daughter’s favourite parts were the zip wire (standard) but also the huge ‘trees’ which she could practice her climbing skills. Dubz loved the big structure that involved climbing up on ropes and then sliding down very quickly.
My favourite part was lying on the blanket, watching them play while sneaking in some mummy-sunbathing (mumbathing, if you like). We had brought a picnic and enjoyed our lunch inside the fenced in playground. Afterwards, we walked around the park for a bit. There were loads of ducks, swans and geese in the lake. There were some people in canoes, and Husband and I did say that we would like to come back another time and take the kids on a canoe or dinghy ride around the lake. Then it was time to head home. We were there for less than three hours, but we were all quite tired. Especially as it was such a warm day.
Now for the practical bit. We found it easy to park. There are over 500 spaces, so even arriving at 11.45am on a Saturday, we had no trouble finding parking. You do have to pay for parking, (£1.50 per hour or £6.00 for four or more hours). The parking costs go to maintaining the park, and is definitely worth it. If you don’t bring coins for the parking machine, you will have to call to pay (which we annoyingly had to do), but we know for next time.
There is also a nice-looking cafe (we got some tea and water before we drove home), with clean toilets round the back of it. There are also loads of grassy spots and some benches for picnicking. The cafe and toilets are only a couple minutes’ walk from the car park. It takes about five minutes to walk to the playground. Dinton Pastures Country Park is a lovely day out, whether you live nearby or not. We’ll definitely be returning this summer. Check out my vlog at the bottom to see how much fun we had.