Friday, 6 March 2015

Folly Farm Adventure Park & Zoo, Pembrokeshire

Whilst doing some research for our Bluestone holiday, I stumbled across Folly Farm Adventure Park & Zoo on Tripadvisor. The reviews were all excellent so I knew we would definitely be visiting! Folly Farm isn't just a farm as their name suggests, it is home to lots of different species of animal including the only giraffes in Wales and even a pride of lions!

We arrived around 10.30am and headed straight for The Jolly Barn & Farm. Wow!! What an amazing barn - lots of big open areas for the kids to explore, lots and lots of animals to get up close and personal to, things to climb on, things to press, cows to milk, blackboards to draw on, the list was endless! Every hour they have a different animal to meet so there is always something going on - Elliot got to meet a little ferret called Fifi. If cute baby animals are your thing then this is the place for you - I fell in love with the baby goats. They were just too cute!


Our next stop was the Folly Interactive section where we saw animals such as tarantulas, parrots, armadillos and snakes. It has been designed so you can experience close encounters with more unusual animals and we certainly got up close and personal with the parrots! They were bobbing around in front of us clearly loving the attention! We took a look in the Interactive Explorer room which gives children the chance to complete educational challenges. Elliot was a tad young for most of this but he did enjoy digging for dinosaur fossils - it was just like he'd seen on Jurassic Park!


We decided to stop and have an early lunch so we made our way to the Ploughmans Restaurant. As we visited out of season, the outdoor food places weren't open but this wasn't a problem for us as it was nice to sit down in the warm for a bit! Food was reasonably priced here and with generous portions. Elliot had a kids munch box which was good value and included a sandwich, crisps, capri sun, yoghurt and a freddo bar. All for around £4 if I remember rightly. 

After lunch we explored the Vintage Funfair which is the largest undercover funfair in Europe. And it was massive!! There were lots of old fashioned rides including the galloping horses and dodgems. There were also lots of stalls where you could win prizes - we couldn't resist having a go and we managed to win Elliot a little George Pig, he was chuffed! The highlight of this whole section for Elliot turned out to be the Ghost train!! Hubby tells me if was quite tame but Elliot talked about it all day long and how he saw witches and werewolves!


Connected to the fairground was Carousel Woods, a huge indoor playarea. There was a great little softplay area for under 5s so we let Elliot loose for a while we sat and watched with a coffee and hot chocolate ;) 

After eventually making our way out of the play area (Elliot really didn't want to leave), it was time to meet some more animals in the Zoo. What struck me immediately was how well looked after the animals were - they all had large, purpose built enclosures and everything was so clean and tidy. 

We loved watching the penguins and were lucky enough to see them being fed - it was also fun to see them swimming underwater but this proved very difficult when it came to taking a decent photo. They were fast!!


In 2012 Folly Farm opened a brand new Giraffe Heights Walkway, a platform which extends right into the giraffe enclosure. Unfortunately when we took a look, all the giraffes were at the other end of their enclosure! Not a problem though as the walkway gives you a great view of the zebra herd. We walked to the other end of the enclosure and it was amazing to be up close to these beautiful animals, so graceful despite the legs!


Folly Farm is home to over 50 different species and I was amazed at how many animals there were - just when I thought we'd seen everything, we turned a corner to find another enclosure! I won't name all the animals (you can find them all HERE) but they included camels, Emu, Ocelot, capybara, lots of birds, macaques and tapirs!


The highlight of the zoo section for me was the pride of lions, who only arrived at the park last Summer. Theres the male lion Hugo, his mate Luna and four cubs Sola, Zahra, Alika and Ebele. They have a wonderful large enclosure and we caught the cubs having a game of football! Elliot had the fright of his life though....we were chatting to the zoo keeper and Elliot had his back to the glass window. She whistled and one of the cubs came running up to the glass - Elliot jumped a mile and thought the cub was going to eat him!! If only I'd had my camera ready ;)


Once we'd seen everything the zoo had to offer (although we could have spent loads more time here!), Elliot spotted the pedal tractors! He always makes a beeline for these when we visit our local farm and today was no different, off he zoomed. He hasn't quite got the hang of pedalling yet but he loves pushing the tractors around. There was lots of picnic benches scattered around here so it was nice to sit down for a minute while he used up even more energy!

Close to the tractors we found lots to play on in the outdoor adventure park. There were two massive pirate ships to clamber on, a dragon playground suitable for toddlers, a construction themed giant sandpit (great for mini Bob the Builders), mini diggers,  and even a big wheel! The 25 metre Pembrokeshire wheel promised amazing views and at 50p per person it was a must. We visited on a lovely sunny day and the view was brilliant from up high, we could see for miles. We could even see the sea!


Last but not least we popped into the large giftshop which was filled to the brim with toys and gifts. We wanted to buy Elliot a dragon toy (we are in Wales afterall) but he was adamant he wanted a dinosaur. Because we haven't got enough of those at home.....!

What a brilliant day out we had, this is easily one of the best places we have ever visited with Elliot. It is excellent value for money (Under £11 per adult) and I cannot recommend it enough!!


Country Kids from Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays Cornwall
ANIMALTALES


Single Mother Ahoy

12 comments:

  1. Sounds brilliant, and Elliot looks like he's having a great time. #CountryKids

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    1. He had the best time and hasn't stopped talking about it! x

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  2. That is brilliant value for a day out - such a shame its too far for me as mine would love it here

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    1. It really was great value, even the annual passes were a bargain!

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  3. I've heard lots of good things about folly Farm park and reading your post it looks like you agree too. I love the dinosaur excavation and can never resist a penguin, the closest we have is a black and white cat called Penguin! Thank you for sharing a lovely day out on Country Kids.

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  4. I have to say that does look like a good day out - I am a bit in 2 minds about keeping animals in zoos but as some-one else mentioned in another Animal Tales post this week,if visiting a zoo gives a child understanding and that leads to wanting to care for the animals (or something like that) then zoos do have a place.

    Thank you so much for joining in with #AnimalTales .... but I do have to say even calling a ferret Fifi will not endear it to me. They are one animal I cannot get on with and there may well be a blog post about this sometime soon.

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    1. Hehe yes the ferret wasn't really my cup of tea, imagine having one as a pet! xx

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  5. Wow, looks absolutely amazing there! Bet my little boy would love it too :) #CountryKids

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    1. I'm sure he would, it really was brilliant fun xx

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  6. Thats an amazing farm. Looks like you all had lots of fun.

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    1. We sure did, would love to visit again one day! xx

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