Holiday Ideas > Keeping Teenagers Entertained in the Forest of Dean: A Family Holiday Guide.

Keeping Teenagers Entertained in the Forest of Dean: A Family Holiday Guide.

Welcome to Big House Holiday Lets, your go-to destination for unforgettable large family holidays! We understand the importance of quality time spent together, which is why our big country houses offer the perfect escape for families of all ages. With spacious accommodations and most houses featuring hot tubs, you and your loved ones will have the time of your lives. But what about keeping those hard-to-please teenagers entertained? Don't worry; we've got you covered! The Forest of Dean offers an array of exciting activities that will engage even those most energetic / bored teenagers. So let's dive into the top 10 fun activities to keep your teens entertained in the magical Forest of Dean.

So here we go…

Wye Valley Canoeing Adventure

The River Wye is the fifth-longest river in the UK and offers fantastic opportunities for families to try canoeing and kayaking. Numerous outfitters along the river provide equipment and guidance, making it easy for even beginners to enjoy the experience. As you paddle, keep an eye out for local wildlife like kingfishers, otters, and even the occasional jumping salmon. Even the teenagers will enjoy this adventure.

A group of people are canoeing on the river wye surrounded by lush green trees

Treetop Adventure at Go Ape Forest of Dean

For an adrenaline-pumping adventure, take your kids to the Go Ape Forest of Dean, located in Beechenhurst. This treetop adventure course offers a variety of rope bridges, Tarzan swings, and zip lines that cater to different ages and skill levels. The entire family can experience the thrill of swinging through the trees and taking in the breath-taking forest views.

Explore the Puzzlewood Forest

Puzzlewood is a magical, ancient woodland that has inspired countless storytellers, including J.R.R. Tolkien and the creators of the Star Wars and Doctor Who series. Teenagers will love exploring the winding pathways, stepping stones, and wooden bridges that weave through the moss-covered rocks and gnarled trees. This wood was made for Instagram! 

Puzzlewood in the wye valley. Image shows a rope bridge in a lush green environment

Wye Valley Falconry

A private one-to-one experience, where you get to handle and fly the birds, will make you understand why Birds of Prey are one of the most fascinating predators in the world. These experiences vary in duration and are available all throughout the year. Luke can be booked to come to your own large country house for a display.

A man has his arm outstretched as a falcon flies down to sit on it available at the Wye Valley Falconry

Mountain Biking in the Forest of Dean

Hit the trails and feel the adrenaline rush as you conquer challenging mountain biking routes in the beautiful Forest of Dean. Perfect for those activity mad competitive teenagers!

Image shows a man cycling on a mountain bike through the Forest of Dean

Hike Symonds Yat Rock

The Wye Valley is a hiker's paradise, and one of the most popular spots is Symonds Yat Rock. This iconic viewpoint offers panoramic views of the surrounding countryside, and there are several trails suitable for families with children. Keep an eye out for the peregrine falcons that nest nearby, as well as other wildlife like deer and wild boar. You never know, the hike might just wear the teenagers out!

Ariel image of Symonds Yat in the Wye Valley

Clearwell Caves Adventure

Discover the subterranean world of Clearwell Caves, a fascinating network of iron ore mines dating back thousands of years. Take a guided tour through the atmospheric caverns, learning about the history of mining and the people who once worked there. The caves also host special events, such as Christmas markets and Halloween tours, making them a great destination for seasonal family outings.

Beautiful image of Clearwell Caves showing blue light reflecting on one of the indoor lakes

Cycle the Peregrine Path

Rent bikes and take a leisurely ride along the Peregrine Path, a 5-mile cycling route that follows the River Wye from Monmouth to Symonds Yat. The flat, traffic-free path is perfect for families, and there are plenty of picnic spots and ice cream vendors along the way. Great for a family day out and take in Monmouth town with the shops, cafes and bars to keep the kids entertained - food and a drink always does it!

A couple ride a tandem along the Peregrine Path in the Wye Valley

Segway Experience

Forest Segway Experience Why not tour the Forest of Dean on Segways? This exciting and unique experience is perfect for teenagers looking for a fun and modern way to explore the forest. Probably a new thing for them to do so it will always be remebered  Check out the Segway fun!

A groupd of 5 people are smiling as they travel by Segway through the Forest of Dean

Wye Valley Butterfly Zoo

Maybe for the quieter, less competitive teenagers, why not take them to this conservation zoo, surrounding yourself with the vibrant colours and delicate beauty of exotic butterflies? And don’t worry, there’s mini golf and a hedge maze puzzle and laser games to keep them entertained too. The butterfly farm is within walking distance of Forest Holidays in the Forest of Dean between Monmouth and Ross on Wye at Symonds Yat in the Wye Valley.

Lots of colourful butterflies in close up. From the Wye Valley Butterfly Zoo

So there you go, the Wye Valley is an brilliant destination that offers a plethora of exciting and engaging activities for teenagers on holiday. From thrilling outdoor adventures like canoeing and rock climbing to immersive historical experiences at Tintern Abbey and Chepstow Castle, there's no shortage of memorable moments to be had even more than the ones we’ve outlined. With its picturesque landscapes, rich heritage, and diverse recreational opportunities, the Wye Valley caters to the diverse interests of young visitors, ensuring an unforgettable holiday experience. So, pack your bags, gather your adventurous spirit, and embark on a journey to this enchanting region where you'll create lifelong memories and forge lasting bonds.

  • Orchard House

    Prices from £2,200.00

    farmhouse and annexe sleeps up to 24 people in 10 bedrooms and is ideal for family occasions, birthday celebrations, reunions, and holiday breaks. Walk through the fields into your own private woodland, bike on traffic free lanes, canoe or cruise the nearby River Wye, enjoy unlimited local activities and award winning pubs and restaurants. Hot tub hire available and well behaved hens are welcomed. Stunning Spanish riding horses bred on site. pet friendly. Big games room and ground floor bedroom/shower room for limited mobility guests.

    • 10 Bedrooms
    • 2 kitchens
    • Large TV Lounge
    • 8 bath and shower rooms/loos
    • Hot tub Hire available
  • Wye Rapids House

    Prices from £2,650.00

    11 ensuite bedrooms, converted hotel overlooking the River Wye rapids at Symonds Yat. Large dining room , bar, lounge, patio, riverside garden plus outdoor hot tub (that can be hired) and games room. Plenty of room to relax and enjoy the sights and sound of nature all around you. An ideal pet-friendly cottage for large group holidays. With flat walks and 3 nearby pubs and restaurants, Wye Rapids provides an idyllic retreat from the hustle and bustle of everyday life for 26 people.

    • 11 ensuite Bedrooms sleeps 26
    • Hot tub hire available
    • All dine together
    • Fully commercial kitchen
    • Offroad parking for 16 cars
  • Holly Tree House

    Prices from £2,200.00

    Charming villa above Symonds Yat, sleeping 22 in 9 bedrooms overlooking River Wye. Two lounges, a large dining room and patio plus covered, outdoor Hot Tub and Games Room. Short walk to 3 pubs (with excellent food), river ferry, and flat riverside circular walk - super pet-friendly. Loads of activities inc canoes and paddle boards. verty safe and secure, no traffic. Ideal multi generation holiday cottage. Holly Tree House provides accommodation in an idyllic retreat from the hustle and bustle of everyday life.

    • 9 bedrooms sleeping 12 - 22
    • 8 Bath and Shower/Loos
    • Covered Hot Tub
    • Pet Friendly
    • 3 Pub/Restaurants walkable
  • Pencraig Court

    Prices from £3,000.00

    Classic country house sleeping 36 in 11 bedrooms midway between Monmouth and Ross on Wye overlooking the river. Pet friendly, stunning rooms, large grounds, games room. On site 3 bed cottage sleeping a further 8 available. Landscaped grounds and gardens and a sweeping drive with an extensive parking area, totalling 3.6 Acres. Hot tub hire available.

    • 11 Ensuite Bedrooms sleeping 36
    • Attached 3 Bed cottage sleeping 8
    • Games Rooms with Table Football and Pool table
    • Hot tub Hire available
    • Pet Friendly
  • The Manor on the Monnow

    Prices from £3,500.00

    Majestic Manor House sleeping 24 in 11 bedrooms, huge lounge and dining room. Big kitchen and separate breakfast room. Games room and covered Hot Tub in 2 acre safe and private grounds. On the banks of the River Monnow, fishing from garden and wild swimming a very short walk. 10 minute flat stroll into town, the Manor is perfect for town and country group self catering in the picturesque border town of Monmouth. Pet friendly.

    • Games Room and Hot Tub
    • Fishing from riverbank
    • Wild swimming 100 yards
    • Galleried Hall with woodburner
    • 11 Bedrooms, 9 Bathrooms
  • The Anchor

    Prices from £2,400.00

    Set in the heart of Lydbrook in the Forest of Dean and previously know as The Anchor Inn, this cosy village pub, which dates back to the 15th century, is now a charmingly converted holiday cottage sleeping 20 in 7/8 ensuite bedrooms. Lovely Games Room and covered Hot Tub. Enclosed rear garden, pet friendly. Walk to village pubs, shop and chippie! Easy access to riverside.

    • 7/8 ensuite bedrooms sleep 22
    • G/F room, sofa bed & bathroom
    • Dogs and other pets welcome
    • Covered Hot Tub
    • Dine 20 round one table
  • River Wye Lodge

    Prices from £3,300.00

    Converted Coaching Inn on the banks of the River Wye, with park and canoe launch - short walk to village shop, pub, Indian takeaway and fish and chip shop. Sleeps 26 in 12 bedrooms, 10 having glorious views of the River Wye. Accessibility ramp to the front door and the ground floor houses a wheelchair friendly twin room with an en-suite wet room. Huge dining room and lounge, 2 connected kitchens, playground outside. Games Room. Pet friendly.

    • 12 Bedrooms sleeping 26
    • Covered Hot Tub
    • Games Room
    • Dine 26 round one table
    • Twin disabled bedroom wet room en suite
  • Forest House

    Prices from £3,000.00

    This 11 ensuite bedroom converted 4* Hotel sleeps up to 25 in the centre of Coleford, the heart of the Forest of Dean - Hot Tub (hire charge) , 3 Lounges , Large dining room, fantastic kitchen. Off road walks and cycling from door. Pet friendly. Short walk to shops, pubs, restaurants. A perfect location for sampling the huge array of activities and attractions in the Forest of Dean.

    • 11 Ensuite bedrooms sleeping 25
    • Covered Hot Tub
    • Games Room with Pool Table
    • All Dine Together
    • Pet Friendly for 2 dogs
  • Monnow Valley Studio

    Prices from £3,300.00

    Sleeps 24 in 11 bedrooms , world famous recording studio on banks of the River Monnow, full of memorabilia with Party Room, Games Room, Cinema Room, stunning dining room, huge modern kitchen, hot tub (hire charge) . Pets are not allowed. peaceful, quiet , safe with no traffic, fishing and swimming from the garden. Licensed for Weddings - 50 max.

    • Outdoor Hot Tub
    • Huge soundproof Party Room
    • Games and Cinema Room
    • 11 bedrooms sleeps 24
    • Licensed for weddings up to 50
  • The Cedars

    Prices from £3,150.00

    The Cedars is a lovely Georgian holiday home ideally located in the heart of the village of Whitchurch, in the Forest of Dean and Wye Valley, and sleeps 16 people.

    • Sleeps 12 - 20
    • 8 bedrooms
    • 5 mins walk to River Wye
    • 4 en-suite bathrooms
    • Walk to 3 pubs/restaurants
  • High Cloud Farm and Barn

    Prices from £2,800.00

    The secluded hilltop retreat of explorer, adventurer, and author Christina Dodwell, High Cloud Farm, a perfect location for 3 generation celebrations, with maps, books, pictures and artefacts in evidence everywhere. This remote rural cottage on the Wales borders offers total privacy as a large party house or holiday retreat. Hot tub and heated Swimming Pool (May till October). farmhouse sleeps 12 and Barn sleeps 12. Everyone can dine together in the Barn. 3 Kitchens, Games Room, pet friendly.

    • Dining table seats 24
    • 10 bedrooms sleeps 24
    • Large games room
    • Heated outdoor swimming pool
    • Covered hot tub
  • Carefree Cottage

    Prices from £600.00

    Carefree Cottage is a pretty 3 bedroom cottage sleeping 8 midway between Ross on Wye and Monmouth

  • Fairlea Grange

    Prices from £1,975.00

    This striking gothic townhouse in the heart of Abergavenny is full of character and inspired Alfred Hitchcock's classic movie The Lady Vanishes. It was the childhood home of Ethel Lina White who wrote the original novel. If you want your stay to evoke a dramatic atmosphere this is the holiday home for you! 9 bedrooms, sleeping up to 24 people with 2 lounges , 2 kitchens , games Room, Hot Tub, enclosed garden in walking distance of town centre and Station. Pet friendly.

    • 9 bedrooms, 7 ensuites
    • Pets Welcome
    • Games Room
    • Covered Hot Tub
    • Near Brecon Beacons