There’s a reason families flock to Stoke Newington – we have an award-winning park, a brilliant adventure playground, a sailing lake, amazing schools and much more. Most of the cafes, restaurants and pubs in the neighbourhood are family-friendly too.
So, whether you’ve money to spend or are keen to enjoy family time without blowing the budget, here are some ideas for family days out in Stokey.
Abney Park is one of London’s Magnificent Seven Cemeteries and it’s teeming with life. It's a fascinating place to visit with children.
This 32-acre Nature Reserve in the heart of Stoke Newington is home to rare birds, bees, bats and butterflies, foxes, badgers and insects. Access it via Stoke Newington Church Street or the High Street.
Get a head for heights
Head to the Castle Climbing Centre for an exhilarating hour and a half of climbing and bouldering. Occupying a former pumping station (cunningly disguised as a castle), this brilliant facility offers Family Taster sessions for parents and children aged seven to 17. Saturday and Sunday sessions available. Book ahead.
Afterwards, head to Stoke Newington Church St (just a 10-minute stroll through Clissold Park) and enjoy a slap-up lunch!
This in-demand creche has an indoor play area, craft corner and water-play. It's based in Stokey PopUp on the High Street and also has an in-house café with plenty of healthy child-friendly options and space for parents to work (with free high-speed wifi). Throughout the week there are baby and toddler classes from local providers.
Take a dip at Clissold Leisure Centre
This local leisure centre has a training pool and a main pool so, whether you're looking to swim lengths or splash about with the kids, this is a good wet-weather activity.
The centre also has a well-equipped gym and offers activities such as soft play for children.
This huge park has everything – tennis courts and basketball courts, a skatepark, playground, huge ponds, sports pitches, an aviary and enclosures for deer and goats.
The New River runs through the park and is teeming with wildlife and there are lovely wooded walks around parts of the park perimeter. Everyone is welcome in Clissold Park and there are some dedicated dog-free spaces. There’s also a gorgeous café. A new splash pad water park for children is expected to open in the summer of 2022.
Enjoy an afternoon of gaming
We think the adults will enjoy this recommendation as much as the kids!
Loading recently relocated to Stoke Newington High St and offers various consoles (Nintendo Switch, X Box One X, PS4) as well as a good selection of retro arcade games and table football. For those who like their games more traditional, Loading has more than 80 boardgames.
The games are free to play to those who eat and drink there. We know the purists among you might prefer family walks in the fresh air, but you’ll win some serious brownie points if you indulge in some family gaming (and there’s the added benefit of beer on tap!).
Shakespeare Walk Adventure Playground
This community adventure playground is wonderful and it’s free – kids under six need to be accompanied by a parent. If they’re over six, you can drop them off and let staff there do the looking after, while you head to a local café (or pub!). The Londesborough Pub and the legendary Luminary Bakery (supporting women who have experienced social disadvantage) are within easy walking distance.
It’s open after 3.30pm Wednesday-Friday and from 12pm till 5pm on Saturdays.
Adventure playgrounds were first introduced to Britain after the Second World War as enriching environments for children to play and explore in.
Take a brisk stroll around Woodberry Wetlands
Opened by Sir David Attenborough in April 2016, this stunning nature reserve was born out of a local campaign to save a disused reservoir from developers.
The wetlands are run by London Wildlife Trust and are a 10-minute walk from Stoke Newington Church Street (head down Lordship Road). They’re open from 9am till 4pm every day and are fully accessible. The lovely Coal House Café on the site occupies a Grade II Listed former coal house and has indoor and outdoor seating.
The East reservoir, hailed by Time Out as one of London’s “secretly best brilliant bits” is an 11-hectare nature reserve featuring reed-fringed ponds and dykes. It’s a haven for migratory birds as well as butterflies, moths, dragonflies, frogs and toads, bats and newts. A lap around the reservoir is an easy, gentle walk. Look out for the resident heron.