All the Fun of the Farms

We do love a farm.  Most activity farms seem to be more about the soft play and the playgrounds than the animals, but Longdown Farm near Southampton offers the opportunity to get up close with a wide variety of animals, from chicks to shire horses.  The scene of Tatiana's infamous goat-kissing, it's full of animals but also has lots of other fun things for children to do.  Having said that, on our most recent visit the girls spent the whole morning playing in the playground, riding on the toy tractors and bouncing on the trampolines.

Lara really got to grips with cycling the big go-karts around and kept going back to give Sophia more rides.  I joined in and really paid for it with aching thighs the next day!

After lunch, we headed over to visit the piggies and saw these gorgeous babies, then it was back to our favourite goat kids for feeding time.

Before we left there was time for some more play, and then Sophia and Tatia decided to help tidy the tractors away by making a big long traffic jam.

Our second recent farm visit was across to the lovely Church Farm at Coombes on the South Downs which opens for the lambing season.  A fairly laidback experience, this is simply a working farm which lets visitors in, so mud and poo are the norm in the farmyard and these are real animals.  I read the other day that a high percentage of parents don't tell their children where the meat they are eating comes from, or even that it is actually an animal, or the process involved in getting the animal from farm to plate.  I can't understand why at all, surely if you choose to eat it, you should be honest about it?

I do question whether, as vegetarians, it's acceptable for us to be part of the meat-machine in this way, but I really value the girls' experience of being close to the animals and seeing real, scream-free birth and proper mammalian-feeding firsthand.  Until we have several acres ourselves, I can reconcile taking part in such activities.  The girls do love seeing the lambs and ewes, they are so adorable, especially as you can climb in with the orphans that are being hand-reared and have a cuddle!

Tatiana, as is her wont, couldn't resist sneaking a kiss!

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  1. These look like fab days out for the whole family, both farms look like there's so much hands on experience for the kids. The girls look like they're having a great time at Longdown Farm with so much to do outside of the animals, the smiles on their faces say everything you need to know. Church Farm sounds like the perfect place to learn more about the lives of the lambs, I must sat I agree with you that children should know where their food's coming from. Thanks for linking up with me on #CountryKids.

  2. THose little piggies and lambs are just lovely! I Love a farm, it's such a shame when the farm sells out to soft play and the such. Looks like here hasn't! Lovely photos #countrykids

  3. This looks lovely! We have some working farms near us that have open days and are really lovely - I much prefer that to going to the big play farms which cost a fortune! #countrykids

  4. I am such a strong believer in teaching children where all their food comes from, especially meat. That way they are able to make informed decisions as to whether they want to eat meat at all or only meat raised ethically and not in factory farms. Thank you for adding so many cute lambs to #AnimalTales

  5. I miss the days when the kids were little and enjoyed nothing better than a visit to a farm for the day

  6. Ah funny I should read this today because we were talking about Longdown this morning! My husband was trying to decide where to take our little boy on a Daddy/Son day and Longdown cropped up on our google search. It looks fun, they decided to go to Weymouth instead but Longdown is definitely on our to-do list for the summer! #animaltales

  7. What a lovely day out. We love visiting farms we always learn so much. Thanks for linking to out and about


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