As part of our series of things to do in London with a toddler, over the bank holiday weekend, we took Lady P to visit a farm.
So technically, this activity is just outside of London in Waltham Abbey, but as Lee Valley Farm is within very easy reach of our north London address, that I think it still counts.
We actually didn’t plan this day out or research it until very last minute given the usual unpredictability of the great British bank holiday weather, so I wasn’t really sure if a) it would be open, b) it would be any good, c) it would bucket down and we would have to retreat with our tails between our legs, or d) it would end in a total meltdown through badly timed overstimulation.
It was going to be an interesting few hours…
Surprisingly though, it was an absolutely great day out!
We got there around midday and the car park was quite empty. Result. Less successful was that on the way, Lady P had done a MASSIVE wee and soaked through her clothes so it was off to the nappy change facilities conveniently located outside of the reception to avoid any distraction on the way through.
Once that was taken care of, as we bought our tickets we were told that the lambs were being given their milk in a few minutes and although Lady P decided she didn’t want to hold one, the kids were given the opportunity to get right up close and personal with their wooly chums as they guzzled their bottles.
In nearby stables and pens, she saw goats, pigs, more sheep, turkeys, chickens, donkeys and exotic birds before heading to the ‘critter cabin’ where she squealed at the sight of “pider” and “eee-eee” – otherwise known as cockroaches and rats to you and I. Delightful.
Once we had also checked out the GIANT bunnies, guinea pigs, tortoises, and she had fed the meerkats some “wiggly worms”, we managed to tempt her away to the cafe to refuel.
A photo posted by Rhian Harris (@fromtumtomum) on
The usual sandwiches, drinks and snack boxes were on offer, and although I’d brought her a packed lunch (which she obviously rejected in favour of Daddy’s Quavers), the selection available was great and also not totally overpriced like other child-friendly establishments… Ahem, London Zoo, Willows Farm etc. Sorry, not sorry.
After lunch, she still had enough energy to tear around the outdoor play area and indoor soft play barn before we had to bribe her back to the car so that she could have a much needed nap on the journey home.
She literally lasted until we had exited the car park.
THAT is what I call a successful day out!
The low down:
- Website: Lee Valley Farm
- Prices: Adults £9.50, under 2s Free, concession £8.50
- Location: Waltham Abbey, Essex – look at visitor info.
- Lots of parking, picnic areas, toilets, hand washing facilities and indoor/outdoor fun – book online for 10% off
- Best way to get there: Driving as it’s not far from the M25.