In Britain, kites have been flown for over 25 centuries. Until the 18 century, they were considered simply a children's toy. However, scientists soon recognised that kites had far more potential. They are now used as part of active sports, to perform stunts, and are even used in war. More importantly, they have become one of our favourite pastimes on a perfect windy day.
The tradition of flying kites is celebrated at kite festivals across the country. Bristol international kite festival boasts one of the biggest meetings of local and international kite experts in the UK and one of the largest of its kind in Europe. Similarly, Portsmouth international kite festival is now recognised globally. Kite festivals provide a wonderful display of colour and talent, as well as a fun, cheap day out for the family.
If you can't make it to a festival, why not try and make a kite of your own? A simple kite is created using wood, string and a 'bag for life', cut into a diamond shape; this can be made with little or no cost. Learn more about how to make your own kite and look at the five day forecast for likely wind speeds and this can help determine the kite you make.
Find an open space to fly your very own kite and watch it twist, turn and soar in the sky. You could also find videos that demonstrate acrobatic kite stunts on the internet and use these to impress your family and friends.
The more daring of us may even try kite-surfing in windy weather.
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Whatever the weather, enjoy the last days of summer by exploring the great outdoors at some of the best National Trust places in the country. Keep the kids entertained all weekend long with a whole host of '50 things to do before you're 11 ¾' activities or learn a new skill, from archery and rock climbing to Geocaching in the countryside. Whether it's beautiful sunshine or pouring with rain, here's a taster of some National Trust places where you can get away from it all this August bank holiday.Read more