Classic Military Vehicle Driving Day with Greentrack Events

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With the sun unusually shining on a February morning, Leoni and I took part in the Classic Military Vehicle Driving Day based in Christchurch, near Bournemouth. The experience was led by Peter who clearly has a passion for all-things-military, making him an excellent instructor for our day. Our experience involved driving a Land Rover 101 Forward Control with a Rolls Royce 4L Engine and a Humber Armored Personnel Carrier, proper old school army vehicles! Here’s how we got on…

First up was Leoni in the Land Rover. Now these vehicles are very old, there’s no fancy technology like power steering or even windshields on some of the vehicles, just good old fashioned strength. Leoni drove the Rover out of its parking spot and we hit the dirt track. Luckily for us, the sun hadn’t dried all the mud up, so we went splashing through and over the rutty path. I was riding in the back seat – you definitely have to hold on, it’s a bumpy ride! Next, it was my turn to take the wheel. It’s a lot harder than driving a car, but with Peters instructions and the odd “NOW LEFT, TOO MUCH LEFT!” we managed to get the hang of it. It was also very amusing listening to Peter shout “watch out for the broccoli!” as the track runs around the side of some crop fields. I navigated round the track back to the start point to drive our second vehicle.

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The Humber Armored Personnel Carrier was used for exactly what its name is, to carry military personnel across various terrains, so it needed to be able to withstand some serious conditions. I hopped in the back and Leoni took the driver’s seat again and off we went. From watching, this one seemed harder to drive and it probably didn’t help that we both could only just about see out the windows! But we got round the track laughing and it truly was so much fun.

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Thanks so much to Peter for having us! This experience is a totally unique way to spend a lovely morning in the countryside. You can find more details about the experience here.

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Mother’s Day 2017

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With Mother’s Day just around the corner – it’s time to think of fun, creative and fun ways to make more memories and show her how much she is appreciated. Whether it’s her first Mother’s Day or her thirtieth, every Mum deserves at least one full day a year of  TLC.

Mother’s Day was first celebrated by the Greeks and Romans, who held festivals in honour of the goddesses Rhea and Cybele. It later became a Christian festival known as ‘Mothering Sunday’- thus the exact date varies slightly every year, to ensure that it always falls on a Sunday. From the moment we are born into the world our Mothers are the most important people in our lives, so here at Experience Days we have come up with a selection of what we think are some of the best ways to spend time with your Mum this Sunday. Whether she is a sporty, active mumma or is more in need of some deep relaxation and pampering – we’ve got it all!

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Full Treatment Package For Two

Take some time out from the hustle and bustle of daily life, and treat her (and you!) to some quality time spent relaxing, and rejuvenating.

With a selection of UK wide spa days to choose from – this makes the ideal experience gift for Mothers Day – after all, what more could they want?


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Hot Air Balloon Flight For Two

Hot Air ballooning is one of the most tranquil and enchanting activities you can ever experience. So give your mother the chance to see the world from a birds eye view and float through the clouds for a thrilling adventure.

You can choose to take part in a private ride with Champagne or go for a group experience – it’s up to you!

 


17_1 Tandem Bungee Jump

For those of you who have an adventurous Mother – why not take the leap of faith with her and do a Tandem Bungee Jump?!

This unusual gift will be an experience you’ll both be sure to remember for the rest of your lives!

 


3828_3Afternoon Tea For Two

Now for something that can be enjoyed by the two of you or with the whole family – afternoon tea!

Whether you choose to take tea on the Thames or visit a stunning country house, this is the perfect way to enjoy quality time together and catch up over delicious tea and scones.


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Meet The Meerkats

And last, but by no means least – Meet the meerkats! This is one for the animal lovers out there, the perfect and cute way to spend the afternoon.

Learn about these adorable creatures and even handle them!


With hundreds of other experiences available on our website including London Walking Tours, Stadium Tours, Photography Classes or Helicopter Rides (amongst many, many more!) you will always find something for everyone. So if you’d like to thank your mum in a very special way, an experience is definitely the way to do it!

If you’d like to enter our very special Mother’s Day competition with the chance to win an Afternoon Tea For Two – follow this link and enter!

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Expert Interview with Nick Wake of iFLY.

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iFLY’s Nick Wake has kindly taken the time to answer some of our all-important questions. With famous faces, world records and a brief history – this is definitely one to read!

Q. How did the idea behind setting up an indoor skydiving club begin?

A. Simon Ward founded the UK business in the 2005. A couple of years prior to that he was walking off the drop zone, after his 19th jump of the weekend, when another jumper landed into him at high speed. The impact left him with a broken neck and nerve damage. He got a bit of time to think – 22 months in fact, while he recovered and during that time he thought about indoor skydiving. The first tunnel opened in Milton Keynes, branded as Airkix. There are now three tunnels in the UK, including Manchester and Basingstoke, which since October 2016 have been operating under the iFLY brand.

Q. What would you say makes you unique on the market?

A. The experience of flying indoor is totally unique! There is nothing else quite like it. What’s more it not just a thrill ride. It’s a sport, which the more you do it, the better you get.
Q. If you had one thing you could tell every customer what would it be?

A. It’s very safe.

Q. Has anyone famous ever come along on an indoor skydive?

A. Over the last eleven years all three tunnels have played host to several events ranging from exciting to unusual including: The Rugby World Cup trophy, a dog flight and numerous wedding proposals.
iFLY has also attempted (and conquered) its fair share of world records in its time including solving a Rubix Cube in the wind tunnel (3 minutes, 16 seconds), longest kiss in freefall (31 minutes, 4 seconds) and the first ever ‘longest indoor freefall’ by legendary adventurer, Bear Grylls, together with UK champion Skydiver, Al Hodgson and iFLY instructor Freddy Macdonald.
Celebrities love to fly. Shortly before signing for LA Galaxy, David Beckham hired iFLY Milton Keynes exclusively for his family and friends as a New Year treat.
Other celebrity visitors also include: England football captain Wayne Rooney, radio DJ Joe Wiley, Take That singer Mark Owen, rapper Dizzee Rascal, glamour model Katie Price, model Elle Macpherson and Motorcycle racer and TV personality Guy Martin who filmed at iFLY Manchester during his TV documentary series, ‘Speed’.

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Q. What is the best thing about indoor skydiving?

A. Pretty much anyone can do it. One of our proudest achievements is our capacity for flying people with physical or mental disabilities. We get involved in lots of charity initiatives and are a great supporter of the British Limbless Ex-Servicemen’s Association (BLESMA).
Q. Do you have any plans for the future? i.e. expanding etc.

A. Yes. Our mission is to deliver the dream of flight to everyone so iFLY tunnels are popping up all over the world. As for the UK….watch this space!

Q. Do you have anything you would like to add that has not been covered?

A. Our instructors like to think of themselves as the rock stars of the business and as far as our customers are concerned…they are! What many people don’t realise is that it takes many hours of training and great physical fitness to make it as an instructor. Those that do, get to live their dream of flight every day.

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Nick Wake, Marketing Director, iFLY.

We would like to say a massive thank you to Nick for taking the time to answer some of our questions. Who knew that iFLY has broken World Records and seen so many Celebrity faces!

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Staff Review: Bluewater Spa – Bournemouth

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The weekend before Valentine’s Day, I decided to treat my partner to a day of luxury with a visit to the Bluewater Spa – this truly was the perfect way to spend a Sunday with a loved one and I cannot recommend it enough.


The Connaught Hotel in the centre of Bournemouth was super easy to get to, and had free on-site parking. We started our Spa day at the reception of the hotel, where we were greeted by the friendly staff with coffee and tea, and given and explanation of the options for lunch or afternoon tea (including gluten-free and vegetarian dishes) and the treatments available.

Once we had sorted out the details, we were shown down to the spa and given a quick tour of the facilities which included; the Gym, Treatment Rooms, Relaxation Room, Swimming Pool, Jacuzzi, Steam Room and Sauna. We then paid a refundable deposit of £20 each and collected our robes, fluffy white towels and soft slippers.

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We chose our Swedish Massage treatment beforehand, but were given the choice of a massage, facial, manicure or pedicure. After we had our excellent massage, we headed back into the spa, where we had full use of the facilities for the rest of the day. After a good couple of hours of relaxing and swimming, we headed up to the hotel brasserie for our delicious and much needed lunch. The room was beautifully decorated with flowers and chandeliers and looked out over the hotel gardens. After our two-course lunch and Champagne, we retreated to the comfy sofas and armchairs by the french doors to enjoy our tea and coffee.

Everything we were treated to on the day is included in the Harmony Spa Day For Two package…and it truly was harmonious! So whether you choose to go with a lover, friend or family member, I would highly recommend the Harmony Spa Day For Two. 

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*WIN* – Mother’s Day Competition

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For all of you who want to treat your mothers and say a big thank you for being so great – this is the competition for you! We are giving away an Afternoon Tea For Two to two lucky winners and this is your chance to WIN.

Whether she’s your Mother in law, friends Mum or your best friend’s aunt – this is the perfect way to show the Mother figure in your life how much you appreciate her! Treat her on us to some quality time together and celebrate in style.

How to enter:

  1. Like the Experience Days’ Facebook page and Mother’s Day competition post
  2. Comment on the post answering the following question:

“If you could take any celebrity to an Afternoon Tea with your Mother, who would it be?”

That’s it, it’s simple to enter and you could WIN the chance to enjoy this delectable experience for you and your mum. Whether you put the cream on your scone first like they do in Devon, or cause controversy and do it in the Cornish way, it’s assured to taste just as good with your mum by your side.

**The two winners will be announced on Friday the 24th of March at 11am.**

Please note we close at 5pm and will be shut throughout the weekend, reopening at 9am on Monday morning.

Follow the link to the competition here: http://bit.ly/2nvDfEb

Good luck and happy Mother’s Day!

*This promotion is in no way sponsored, endorsed, administered by, or associated with, Facebook. The prize gift vouchers comply with Experience Days UK Terms & Conditions

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Expert Interview With London Dance Academy

Following our visit to London Dance Academy in February, we thought we’d take the time to have a chat with Vanessa, the Studio Manager, to learn more about the company as a whole. She gave some really interesting answers on behalf of the Academy – continue reading to find out more…

Q. Hi Vanessa – to kick things off, please can you tell us a little about the history of London Dance Academy?

A: Best friends and accomplished dancers Alexe Woods & Melissa Grey set up London Academy of Pole Dancing in 2005. The company started by running classes in gyms and clubs across London, and were the first to introduce pole dancing to these venues. In 2012 the company expanded and opened their own studio on Central Street with a unique offering of pole dancing, anti-gravity yoga, aerial and circus skills classes as well as tailor-made flexibility and conditioning classes for dancers and aerialists.

LDA now run over 150 classes a week at venues across Central London, and have developed a very successful dance party business as well as a performers agency in addition to the regular class offering.

LDA was the first school in London to offer comprehensive classes in pole dancing technique and choreography from beginner to elite level, alongside specially developed flexibility and conditioning classes all under one roof. Wanting to expand their class range, they added anti-gravity and aerial circus classes to the repertoire when they opened their own studio in 2012. LDA was the first studio to teach Antigravity® yoga classes in London.

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Q. Wow, the company has grown quite a lot! Where did the passion for dance originally stem from?

A. Both Alexe and Melissa have been dancers all their lives. Dance has always played a vital part in their families – their mothers are dancers and have passed on their passion to them.

Starting with classical ballet, and moving on to explore other contemporary dance forms, Alexe and Melissa were soon asked to do pole dancing performances at events and shows. However, unable to find any pole dancing schools and relying on taking private lessons with individual teachers/professionals in the field across the country, Alexe and Melissa realised there was a big gap in the market and decided to pursue their dream of building their own dance company.

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Q. What makes your classes unique compared to others on the scene?

A. LDA offer over 150 classes a week including pole dancing (technique & choreography), aerial & circus arts, antigravity yoga as well as flexibility, conditioning and body building classes alongside fun sessions like ‘Twerk’ and ‘Grind’ or ‘Discover Your Sexy’.
We also provide private one-to-one tuition and private group experiences in a wide range of dance styles, tailored to each individual or group – no matter what background, size, age, shape or fitness level.

Our aim has always been to challenge the way people view fitness, focussing on enjoyable and creative ways to stay in great shape, mentally, physically & emotionally, and discover new skills.

LDA have been running classes and private group experiences for 11 years in all of the above disciplines. We have been working with a wide range of corporate brands and private clients over the years, and continue to operate at a number of fantastic venues across London to cater for our diverse client base.

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Q. Who would you say your experiences are most suited for?

A. At LDA, inclusivism is a top priority. We welcome students from all walks of life – no matter your age, size or fitness experience, we are certain that you will feel relaxed and empowered as you learn.

Our experience can cater to anyone who has always wanted to try a particular dance style or activity, as well as participants with previous experience. Our highly professional teachers are all well equipped to teach classes on all levels, including mixed level groups and we are always happy to tailor a session to meet specific needs.

Our lessons are also ideal for both private group classes as well as experiences for special occasions such as birthdays, hen do’s and the like.

Q. We imagine there are some funny stories to tell, any favourites?

A. All our classes are a great laugh, especially the private group experiences. Some people like dressing up for a themed party, so we have had great moments; from Dirty Dancing and Moulin Rouge, to 80s or 90s parties, and even 50 Shades of Grey – too many to tell!

Some people are completely taken by surprise when friends arrange a class for their birthday or hen do and have a fantastic time trying out something they have always wanted to learn but never quite dared to. So essentially, every experience has a very special character and we’ve collected a lot of fun and entertaining memories over the years – as have our clients.

One memorable experience that will always stick in our minds is the group of army lads who brought in their completely unsuspecting mate for a pole dancing stag do…we’ll let you imagine the rest!

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Q. That sounds brilliant! Finally, do you have any exciting plans for the future?

A. We are currently developing our own unique clothing range of pole dance and yoga wear, as well as staging more corporate events and planning to expand our business and open another of our own studios. LDA has always been about ambition and taking our company further with new ideas, spaces and offers…so watch this space!

We would like to thank Vanessa for telling us more about the London Dance Academy and sharing her story with us. We have thoroughly enjoyed getting to know more about such an amazing dance school and look forward to experiencing more of their lessons, first-hand in the future!

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Expert Interview: Adrenalin Jungle

adrenaline-jungle-1Here at Experience Days we love to learn more about our experience providers and the highly successful companies that they run. Recently, we were lucky enough to catch up with Don (company owner) to find out more about Adrenalin Jungle – one of our outdoor activities providers in Nottingham. Continue reading to find out more…

Q. Where did the idea behind starting Adrenalin Jungle originally come from?

A. Adrenalin Jungle has evolved over the years. Originally back in 1994 we were called Paintball Jungle, but over the first few years we realised that our 150-acre venue was capable of providing so much more. We started by introducing 1 or 2 new events every year and now boast 22 different activities, all available at our Sherwood Forest venue. However, we soon realised that our company name; Paintball Jungle, was too restrictive…and so Adrenalin Jungle was born.

Q. What would you say is the best thing about the experiences you offer?

A. Each event appeals to a different demographic and the range of guests we are able to accommodate is vast, so there is no one best thing about what we offer.

What I think is one of our key USP’s (that’s Unique Selling Point to most of us) is that we are able to provide guests with new and exciting events to escape from the normal day-to-day things, even if it’s just for a couple of hours. We offer fun-filled outdoor experiences that can be enjoyed by individuals, couple and groups.

Q. Do you have any funny stories about customers or experiences?

A. Not really, however as we have worked at our venue for so many years we are always surprised by guests who are expecting to do the activities inside…I’m not quite sure how they think we could squeeze 150 acres of woodland indoors!

As instructors, we are used to the great outdoors but a lot of our visitors who come from larger cities are blown away by how big the trees are, how open the space is, and that they are allowed to come and do what we do!

Q. What do you think makes Adrenalin Jungle stand out from other adventure companies in the area?

A. This is always very difficult, we are not very good at bigging ourselves up and much prefer our guests to do it for us…which they do regularly on review sites.

One of our core values is to always provide professional and organised events, and it’s normally the organisation around the event that makes the difference. Let’s be honest – the actual events take care of themselves, so the fact that the meet, great and “thank you for coming” are just as professional as the event delivery means that the whole experience, from arrival to departure, is a good one.

Q. Do you have any plans for the future?

A. We always keep our eyes and ears open for the next big thing. We added combat archery last year and bubble football the year before, but at present there are no new products that we think would fit with our values.

Q. Is there anything you’d like to tell us about?

A. Simply that we are very proud of what we do – the guest experience is everything to us and while we welcome repeat visitors, we also specialise in providing the perfect environment for first-time Adrenalin seekers.

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We would like to say a massive thank you to Don for taking the time to answer our questions. We hope you have enjoyed finding out more about the much-loved adventure company, Adrenalin Jungle…don’t forget to check out some of their experiences!

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Staff Review: Aerial Yoga with London Dance Academy

gift-voucherPerhaps like me, you have heard of Aerial Yoga before, but it never really crossed your mind that you’d actually have the chance to try the experience out? Well, on the 8th Feb 2017, Leoni and I were lucky enough to be invited to London to get our zen on and take part in a private Aerial Yoga class. Here’s how we got on…

Our lesson took place at the London Dance Academy Studio in Old Street which was only a few minutes walk from the tube stop.  Dressed in our yoga gear (gym leggings and a top that covers your armpits – think about the chaffing!), we arrived at the venue and were raring to get stated…we’d been looking forward to trying this experience out for weeks! We left our shoes and bags in the changing room and then met our instructor, Toni and headed to the studio.

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We started off nice and easy – first of all just sitting in the swing and getting used to the sensation of hovering above ground with our legs dangling free. It was then time to kick things up a notch and learn how to somersault out of the sling. It will never quite seem natural to be swinging your legs over your head to flip upside down…but it definitely is fun!

Next we tried out the ‘One-Legged King Pigeon Pose’ which really stretched out our hips and backs. As we learnt from Toni, using the aerial silk allows gravity to help your back leg relax and therefore let your spine curve naturally to allow for a deeper stretch. Following this, we tried out some Superman-inspired poses involving stretching out your arms and legs to ‘fly’ in the air. What a great core workout this class is!

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This one hour private aerial yoga class was one of my favourite experiences I have been on, since starting work here at Experience Days, 7 months ago. It was a great workout and I found myself addicted, anxiously awaiting the next move to learn (plus it’s way more fun than going to the gym). The class has the perfect balance of testing your fitness whilst also focusing on challenging stillness in your mind and body. One tip however…definitely don’t have a cup of tea before you start, there is a LOT of moving around!

Thank you so much to Toni, and to London Dance Academy for having us!  If you’d like to have a go at Aerial Yoga yourself, you can either take a private class or join a group to try out this wonderful active experience.

Wath this space for the start of my professional acrobat career!

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Staff Review: Cupcake and Cookie Baking with Greenwich Pantry

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Cupcakes and cookies are by far some of the most loved baked goods, and here at Experience Days we just can’t get enough of them! At the start of February, Maddie and I embarked on a new baking adventure, lead by expert baker Teresa and sous chef Merian, of Grenwich Pantry  – this was a fantastic way to spend our Friday evening.

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Upon arriving at Prendergast Vale College (where the experience was held), we were greeted and shown through to the Food Tech department by the friendly staff. Once in the kitchen, we put our coats and bags away and waited for the other participants. When everyone had arrived and we’d all had tea and a friendly chat to get acquainted, it was time to begin. Teresa and Merian showed us to our workstations and briefed us on the goods we’d be baking during our two hour lesson – lemon and poppyseed cupcakes with a buttercream icing, and cinnamon swirls!

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Starting with the cupcakes, we were taught the correct techniques for folding, whipping and beating our mixture to make it as airy as possible. Making light and fluffy cupcakes has always been something that I have personally struggled with, so as a keen baker these tips were great!

To use our limited time effectively, we made the cinnamon swirls (or in my case, accidental blobs) whilst the cupcakes were in the oven, and iced our cupcakes whilst the cinnamon swirls were baking. The swirls were made from a basic cookie dough, with brown sugar and cinnamon rolled into it. Even though they turned out rather unattractive, they were very tasty – so a win win situation!

I think it’s safe to say that the swirls were not my strong point.. as you can probably tell from the pictures comparing mine and Maddie’s creations!

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Everything was timed well and we had some delicious results at the end, which we are still eating four days later! It’s safe to say, although a keen baker, I still have a lot of skills to brush up on. We would like to say a massive thanks to Greenwich Pantry for having us and give a special mention to the friendly staff that helped us create our baked masterpieces!

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Hot Off The Site: This Week’s Latest Products

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Quick – get them whilst they’re hot! Here at Experience Days we are constantly on the hunt to add new and exciting experiences to the site, so you can try out the very best available on the market. Only problem is that now you might be stuck for your favourite choice! Here’s a few ideas…

Up at The O2 Climbing Experience

We are VERY excited to add this experience to our site – as it’s none other than the Up at the 02 Climbing Experience! On this adventure, you’ll scale your way across the 380m walkway over the top of The O2 Arena. You can either take the Original, Sunset or Twilight Climb and walk your way up to the viewing platform at the top to see the stunning skyline of London. You’ll be able to see iconic landmarks including The Shard, The Gherkin, Walkie Talkie and many more.

Full Day Airsoft War Game for 2 in Wigan

This experience for you and a friend will channel your inner warrior as you compete in the ultimate indoor Airsoft experience. If you’re not quite sure what Airsoft is – think paintballing but minus the stinging! The bullets hit at a lot lower speed and hurt a lot less, without losing the excitement of the thrilling military simulation experience. You could add a bit of healthy competition to see who will be crowned the best shot!

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Archery Experience – Nottinghamshire

If you’re not looking to be a warrior for the day – become Robin Hood instead! This one hour experience is the perfect way to learn the skills and practice hitting that bullseye, whether you’re an Archery ‘newbie’ or an experienced shooter this experience will be fun for all. Your expert instructor for the day will show you the best tricks and tips for nailing it each time. Enjoy!

Bath 30 Clay Shooting Experience

We’ve recently just added this 30 clay shooting experience to our collection of other clay shooting packages in Bath (40 clay here and 60 clay here) which is the just the right amount to get you started in the classic sport of shooting. This experience is an ideal taster for everyone in the family, young or old! Or it’s also great for stag and hen parties for a fun, outdoorsy day to celebrate.

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Portsmouth Helicopter Sightseeing Tour

This new helicopter sightseeing tour offers a unique way to see the famous Spinnaker Tower from above and check out some of luxury yachts in the harbour, you may catch yourself daydreaming that you own one! You may also spot some of the naval ships which are based in the Hampshire port. You’re assured to capture some wonderful photos on this experience, let’s hope the sun can make an appearance to make them even better!

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We are constantly adding new products each week, so keep your eyes peeled for the best deals!

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