Best ideas for the holidays, from Halloween events to the Garden Museum

Events are subject to change according to Government restrictions.

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Plant an idea in London

The Garden Museum, next to Lambeth Palace, is holding a three-day houseplant festival from 23-25 October. Talks focus on making floristry more accessible, the language of houseplants and growing to eat in small spaces; there will be demonstrations, displays and plants for sale too. Tickets £5, gardenmuseum.org.uk.

Go surfing in Bristol

Many will be keen to get outdoors and on the water, not least because it’s one of the safest places around at the moment. The Wave inland surfing lagoon offers year-round boarding, with waves to suit all abilities – from 50cm to 2m barrels. Beginner lessons from £40 per child and £50 per adult, surf sessions from £30, reservations essential, thewave.com.

A pressing engagement in Somerset

Apple Day on 21 October celebrates the bountiful harvest and at The Newt in Somerset hotel and gardens near Bruton, the festivities continue until 25 October. Visitors can make apple juice or bring their own apples for pressing, and there will be displays and live music. Tickets £17.50, under-16s £7, thenewtinsomerset.com.

Ships in the night in Cornwall

The 18th-century port of Charlestown, with its striking tall ships, is hosting a paranormal investigation at its Shipwreck Treasure Museum on the night of 31 October. The museum holds more than 8,000 shipwreck artefacts, among them items from the SS Mohegan, which was lost off the Lizard in 1898 for reasons unknown – the wreck is reputed to be haunted. Tickets £45, Twitter @nights_stranger.

Halloween happenings in North Norfolk

From 28-31 October, the Holkham Estate is staging a Grimm Halloween in its walled garden. There will be performances of Hansel and Gretel, storytelling, pumpkin carving and craft activities. The brave can also tackle the high ropes course by darkness. Tickets £6, some activities extra, holkham.co.uk.

Spooky stories in Oxford

The Story Museum, Oxford, has reopened after renovations (Photo: Andrew Walmsley)

The Story Museum has now partially reopened following a multi-million-pound renovation. On Sunday 18 and 25 October, it will host an hour-long Spells and Magic Family Walk in the Whispering Wood indoor forest, with a team of storytellers who will bring spooky characters to life. Tickets £5, storymuseum.org.uk.

Halloween harvest in Staffordshire

Take a moonlit pumpkin-picking stroll at the Adventure Farm in Tatenhill from 23-25 and 29-31 October. Select your winter squash by torchlight with live music and fire performers on site, as well as a fairground and food stalls. Tickets £9.99, adventurefarm.co.uk.

Lights out in North Yorkshire

A range of small group activities is planned for the Dark Skies Fringe Festival in the North York Moors National Park from 23 October to 1 November, including deep sky exploring at Dalby Forest, looking for star clusters, nebulae and galaxies. There’s also a Mars observation evening, night trail runs and a ghost walk in Robin Hood’s Bay. Events are also taking place in Exmoor National Park. Prices vary, darkskiesnationalparks.org.uk.

Get wet in the Lakes

Cumbria is best known for its glassy lakes, but you can embrace its liquid assets on a white-water river rafting expedition with your bubble. With a starting point easily accessible from Keswick, trips are around three hours long, are suitable for over-10s and offer dramatic views as well as thrills. Adults £55, children £45, lakedistrictwhitewaterrafting.co.uk.

Tales of water in Scotland

The programme of this year’s Scottish International Storytelling Festival focuses on a nation that is shaped by water. Running from 17-31 October, it includes small-scale live storytelling in outdoor locations, a free exhibition of Highland lore at the Scottish Storytelling Centre in Edinburgh and a walk along Scotland’s Democracy Trail. A number of events will also take place online. Prices vary, www.sisf.org.uk.

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