Half-term breaks

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Picnic basket
Fancy a picnic this summer? ››

Plan a picnic in Scotland this summer and discover beautiful locations, delicious recipes, planning advice and inspiring ideas.

Summer pocket guides
Summer pocket guides ››

Enjoy summer in Scotland and get great ideas on things to do with our pocket guides on camping, families and outdoor activities.

Scallops at the Loch Fyne Restaurant & Oyster Bar
Foodie Trails eBook ››

Check out our new eBook and plan a delicious culinary journey around Scotland.

A family having fun at Dalscone Farm Fun
Family days out ››

Scotland is a great choice for a family holiday. Check out free attractions, family memberships, passes and discount offers.

  • Dundee Science Centre in autumn, west of the city centre
    Dundee Science Centre, west of the city centre
  • An illumination in Faskally Wood as part of The Enchanted Forest between 5 - 27 October © Graham Smith
    The Enchanted Forest © Graham Smith
  • Highland dancers perform at the Cowal Gathering, Dunoon
    Highland dancers from the Cowal Gathering, Dunoon
  • Shot of the Stewart Memorial Fountain in Kelvingrove Park
    Kelvingrove Park

During school holidays such as half-term, Scotland offers great activities for families. Castles, museums and other attractions put on special events, often at little or no cost, and the great outdoors offers endless entertainment.

Half-term days out

Great family days out can range from science centres and aquariums to country estates and castles, with many offering seasonal events programmes, such as the Dundee Science Centre, the only UK science centre which explores the five senses. Take advantage of the many free things to do and visit the many museums, gardens and parks. 

Seasonal things to do

Whether you’re on a spring, summer or autumn break, you’ll find a great range of seasonal experiences to enjoy. In autumn, the cold crisp days are ideal for exploring some of Scotland’s Great Trails or joining nature and wildlife events in Scotland’s forests and woodlands. In late spring and early summer you might spot brand new deer calves at The Scottish Deer Centre in the Kingdom of Fife.


Large scale seasonal events for families really bring something special to your half-term break. In autumn there are many great festivals, including the Scottish International Storytelling Festival which holds imaginative events for children and adults in Edinburgh and at venues across the country.

Other family friendly events include Orkney International Science Festival, The Enchanted Forest in Perthshire and the Highland Games which take place across the country in late summer and early autumn.

Where to stay during half-term

For families, self-catering accommodation offers a flexible, value-for-money option. At caravan and camping sites there are often activities for children to enjoy on-site and forest cabins have great access to cycle paths and trails. Many apartments and holiday cottages offer pre-order services so your food shopping will be there on arrival and you can get on with enjoying your holiday.