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Cheltenham is a beautiful town renowned for it’s Regency buildings, famous racecourse and the Cheltenham festivals. Surprisingly, it’s also jam packed with a multitude of things to do which will appeal to teens.

Swim in the lido, shop til you drop, hire bikes, try your hand at axe throwing, discover Cheltenham’s history, experience a festival, see impressive street art… whatever you choose to do (and there is so much) you’ll have a fabulous time.

Read on for 17 things to see and do in and around Cheltenham with your teens.

Hire Bikes and Cycle The Regency Trail


The Honeybourne Line on the Regency Cycle Trail.
Photo by Stephen McKay / Wikimedia

Hire bikes at the Bicycle hub near Cheltenham station and embark on a self guided cycle tour. The Regency cycle trail is a 6 mile route. It’s an easy cycle ride on mostly flat trails, with about half of the cycle paths being traffic-free.

The route begins at The Bicycle Hub’s premises at Cheltenham Spa railway station, follows the Honeybourne Line, before winding through Pittville Park. You can purchase the Regency Cycle trail app at the Bicycle hub for £5. Add £19 for bike hire.

Find out more at The Bicycle Hub

Have Fun at Pittville Park

Pittville Park is great to stroll through and enjoy a picnic. There are many exciting activities for teenagers to partake in while they are there. Hire a rowing boat, try out the skate park, play tennis and pitch and putt.

Make a pitstop at the Boathouse Café to refuel.

Find out more at Pittville Park

Swim at Sandford Park Lido


Photo by Rick Crowley / Wikimedia

Sandford Park Lido is a great place to take teenagers for an outdoor dip in the summer months. It’s set in four acres of beautiful, landscaped grounds. Walk through Sandford park from Cheltenham to get there.  There is also parking for 150 cars onsite. Make sure you don’t overstay at the car park to ensure you avoid a large fines.

Find out more at Sandford Park Lido

Visit the Wilson Art Gallery and Museum

This small museum is free to enter so worth a visit especially if you teenager is interested in art and history.

It’s home to fascinating archives relating to Antarctic explorer Edward A. Wilson, Cheltenham’s history, and the Emery Walker Library. It also has the Sir Charles Irving Community Art Gallery and Summerfield Exhibition Gallery. If you have younger kids as well as teens they will enjoy the brand new World of Wonders children’s gallery.

Check out their website before you visit as there are often many interesting exhibitions

Find out more at The Wilson Art Gallery and Museum.

Challenge Friends and Family at Indoor Crazy Golf

A fun activity for a rainy day is Mr Mulligan’s crazy golf. Teens will love the 2 adventure golf courses plus shuffleboard and pool. There’s also a restaurant if you find yourself hungry after your game.

Find out more at Mulligan’s Cheltenham

Watch a Movie at a Boutique Cinema

Visit the Tivoli cinema in Cheltenham and watch a movie one evening or afternoon.

Sit in the luxurious, sofa seating while watching the latest blockbuster.

Why not combine your cinema trip with food or coffee in the stylish Tivoli café? Gourmet burgers, ice cream sundaes and stone baked pizza are some of thing things on the menu.

Located in Regent’s Arcade there’s plenty of shops nearby, so you could incorporate a shopping trip with your cinema outing.

Find out more at Tivoli Cinema

Go Shopping


Shops on Monetpellier Walk Cheltenham
Photo by Ian S / Wikimedia

Cheltenham is a brilliant shopping destination for teens who like to shop.

There are numerous traditional shopping streets which are gorgeous to walk around. Many high street brands (including John Lewis, House of Fraser and Argos) are housed in beautiful Regency buildings. The Promenade is worth a visit as it was listed by Google as one of the best shopping streets in the country. Also check out the Montpellier shopping arcade. Completed in 1832,  it’s one of the oldest purpose built shopping arcades in the UK.

For undercover shopping visit Regent’s Arcade. Here, you can explore over 60 retail stores and dining options all under one roof. Perfect when it’s raining.

Cheltenham is also home to many independent shops with many located on the Bath road and in the Suffolk’s area.

Have a Bash at Urban Axe Throwing

This fun activity is the perfect activity for teens to enjoy themselves while trying something new. Axe throwing originated in Canada but now there are centres throughout the UK.

Experienced coaches will show teens what to do before they’re let loose with an axe! Lots of fun!

Find out more at Eat Sleep Axe, Cheltenham.

Visit the Pittville Pump Room

Cheltenham is known for it’s beautiful Regency buildings, one of which is the Pittville Pump Room, a remnant of Cheltenham’s past as a spa town. The pump room is a fine example of Regency architecture wit Ionic columns and classical statues of Greek goddesses.

The Pump Room is located on the north border of Pittville Park and is worth a visit if your teen is interested in the history of Cheltenham.

It was developed by the MP Joseph Pitt in the 1820s as as a place to drink healthy waters in the new town of Pittville.

The Pump room is open from Wednesday to Sunday and visitors can embark on a free, immersive heritage trail.

Breakout of an Escape Room

Cheltenham is home to many escape room experiences which are super fun for teenagers. It’s another fab activity for a rainy day.

Check out:

Escape Rooms Cheltenham where you can choose from three exciting, Gloucestershire inspired games.

Escape Hunt Cheltenham which includes outdoor games as well as indoor escape rooms

Escape Entertainment Cheltenham designs, builds and runs all its own games making it an escape room destination like any other.

Watch a Show at The Everyman Theatre

If your teenager likes the theatre, there’s lots of shows including comedies, drama, Christmas panto and musicals at the Everyman Theatre.

Go Bowling at Hollywood Bowl

Hollywood Bowl  is the ideal place to play ten pin bowling and keep the teenagers happy.

Check out Hollywood Bowl, Cheltenham.

Experience a Cheltenham Festival

The Cheltenham festivals take place throughout the year and include festivals for science, music, literature and jazz. If your teenager is interested in one of these subjects or is studying it, it may be worth visiting Cheltenham during their preferred festival.

During the festivals there is lots going on with free (and paid for) activities to experience. The Jam-packed programmes include the very best international artists, performers and speakers. They also showcase up and coming talent.  You will need to book in advance for some of the talks and events. Some famous speakers they’ve had their in the past include Brian Cox, Alice Roberts, Richard Dawkins and David Attenborough. Great British Bake Off winner Nadiya Hussain, Ruby Wax and authors such as Jacqueline Wilson, Philip Pullman and Anthony Horowitz have all attended.

The dates in 2023 are as follows:

Jazz – 26 Apr – 1 May 2023
Science – 6 Jun – 11 Jun 2023
Music – 8 Jul – 15 Jul 2023
Literature – 6 Oct – 15 Oct 2023

Find out more at Cheltenham Festivals

Experience Cheltenham’s Street Art

If your teen loves graffiti and street art, Cheltenham is perhaps surprisingly a great place to visit.

It’s home to the Cheltenham Paint festival which is a new annual festival held in the town.

The walls which are painted on during the festival are permanent. View them all year round. The street art work is impressive. A Google map shows you where you can see the artwork throughout Cheltenham.

Visit Cheltenham Racecourse

Cheltenham racecourse is one of the most famous things to do in Cheltenham. Some teenagers will love a few hours at the races.

The racecourse host the world famous festival in March. It’s also known for jump racing.

In addition, it hosts concerts, darts, comedy nights and other events.

Check out Cheltenham racecourse website to see what’s on.

Climb High At Boulders

At Centrum Park off Tewkesbury Road you’ll find Boulders, an indoor climbing facility. You can book as a family on a family “give it a go” session. There are also dedicated “give it a go” sessions for 10 to 13 year olds and 14 to 17 year olds.

Find out more about “Give it a Go sessions” At Boulders.

Where to eat in Cheltenham with Teens

There are plenty of places to eat in Cheltenham. Here are a few highlights:

The Curious Cafe or Baker and Graze for breakfast
The Ivy, Woodkraft or the The Tavern for Brunch and / or lunch
Zizzi is good for pizza and pasta and housed in a beautifully converted church
Hotel on the Park is great for Sunday lunch
Wagamama is a favorite chain with many teens and there is one in Cheltenham.
Kibou restaurant is another restaurant that serves Japanese food that’s very good.

Other places to go in the area if you have a car

Cheltenham is not far from the Cotswolds and Gloucester and there is a wide range of attractions in the area. Tourist attractions include Slimbridge and Gloucestershire and Warwickshire Steam Railway. Here are a couple more places to consider going to with teens.

Bourton-on-the-Water

Drive over to visit to see this beautiful Cotswold village. It takes approximately 30 minutes by car from Cheltenham. Visit the Penguins at Birdland, great for teenagers who like animals. Get coffee and cake from the Den

Sudeley Castle

Located a half hours drive away is Sudeley Castle & Gardens. This charming castle is steeped in history having played an essential role in England’s history for over 1,000 years. Katherine Parr, Henry VIII’s sixth and final wife is buried here. There’s a range of family events held here throughout the year.

Find out more at Sudeley Castle.

Gloucester

Gloucester is a 25 minutes drive from Cheltenham.  There’s plenty for teenagers to do in Gloucester including a boat ride, museums, paddleboarding, shopping at Gloucester Quays and lots more.  Discover 17 best lots of things to do in Gloucester. 

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