Münsterland for families
Top day trip destinations for parents and kids
Our tips for family days out in Münsterland: Fun and adventure parks, zoos and museums promise plenty of enjoyment for kids.
Cycling and horse riding
Münsterland is known for its expansive verdant landscapes. The flat terrain makes it ideal for a cycling tour with the whole family. An integrated cycling zone network makes it easy to plan short child-friendly trips, with very little pedalling effort required on the level paths. The foremost cycling tour is the 100-Schlösser-Route (100 Castles Route), and even children cannot fail to be impressed by the magnificent palaces, castles and stately homes along the way.
Young visitors to Münsterland who prefer to sit in a different kind of saddle will be right at home in the horse capital of North Rhine-Westphalia. Some of the large number of riding stables also offer riding holidays or daily rides for children. In the horse town of Warendorf, visitors young and old can admire the beautiful animals at special events like the annual Warendorf stallion parade. At Merfeld Marsh, families can see the free-roaming herd of Dülmen ponies.
Fun and activity parks
Ketteler Hof in Haltern am See may not have any horses, but its petting zoo has plenty of other animals for children to see up close, including roe-deer, sheep, goats and guinea-pigs. The attraction?s fun and activity park is an absolute paradise for young ones, including tots. There is a water play area for a good splash-about and a track for driving small wooden racing cars. Older and more daring kids will love tearing down the (water) slides or tackling the scarily high climbing frames. Ketteler Hof also has a nature trail with over 30 stops for children and parents to learn more about the local flora and fauna.
Young visitors can also discover lots of new things at the Vier-Jahreszeiten-Park (Four Seasons Park) in Oelde. Adventures and activities await at the play castle, the mud and forest playgrounds, the raft ferry, the adventure farm and the treehouses linked by rope bridges. In the meantime, their parents can enjoy the beautiful green surroundings of the former garden exhibition grounds. The Four Seasons Park lives up to its name by staging different family events throughout the year, from jugglers and entertainers in the summer to skating in winter.
Culture and museums for children
The Four Seasons Park is home to another highlight for curious youngsters. The Klipp Klapp children?s museum has four themed activity areas built around the historic Kramers water-mill. Here, it is all about getting hands-on and trying different things, like becoming a miller for a day or forecasting the weather in front of a rolling camera.
At the Museum für Lackkunst (Lacquerwork Museum) in Münster, the programme for children revolves around dragons, fortune deities and bats. The educational programme of this museum, the only one of its kind in the world, is free of charge and aimed at children between the ages of eight and twelve. Meanwhile, visitors young and old can admire the exhibits dating back to pre-Christian times.
Travelling back in time is always interesting for children of all ages. At the LWL Roman Museum in Haltern am See, budding archaeologists can explore the remains of a former Roman camp. This attraction also holds an annual event to bring the Roman era to life. Families can enjoy pottery exhibitions, music, games and mock battles during the two days of the ?Römertagen?.
Another enjoyable day out for families awaits at the LWL Museum of Natural History in Münster. Changing exhibitions and the adjoining planetarium promise plenty of new discoveries for curious visitors.
Zoos and animal parks
After seeing the stuffed animals at the Natural History Museum, kids will love to see their favourite creatures up close and personal at Münsterland?s zoos and animal parks. The Allwetterzoo in Münster has created ?all-weather paths? so that visitors can keep their feet dry while going from enclosure to enclosure even when it is raining. Other great places to see animals in Münsterland are NaturZoo Rheine, Wildpark Frankenhof in Reken and Anholter Schweiz wildlife park, which is located near the Dutch border.