Folly Farm – Best Day out in Wales 2015

While we were visiting Bluestones in Pembrokeshire we had the opportunity to spend a day at Folly Farm which is a 15 minute drive away. Now you would be forgiven of thinking that Folly Farm is just that – a farm, in fact it is so much more. We spent the whole day exploring and could have easily have spent a second day as well. When you arrive you are given a wrist band for your child which has a space for your phone number, this is a great idea and gives you a little more piece of mind when things are busy.

The park is divided up into four areas, Farm, Zoo, Funfair and Adventure Play.

Follys Farm

Farm

Follys FarmMonkey was given the choice as to where to visit first and he opted for the barn, which is huge and so clean it was spotless which is a real achievement when its packed with animals. There are shop fronts all round Follys Farmthe outside of the barn, it is these shops that are the animals enclosures. In the middle there are hen houses, an egg incubator and a huge play on tractor and combine harvester, which Monkey ran to first jumping up and down with excitement.

Follys FarmIn the barn they hold a number of meet and greet sessions throughout the day. Animals include ferrets, guinea pigs, rabbits, goats, rats and miniature pigs. They also have opportunity to milk goats twice a day. We didn’t arrive at the right time for his, but Monkey did have a go at milking a cow at the back of the barn. There are black boards up in the barn and on the outside letting you know whats going on and when.

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Follys FarmFrom the barn we headed to the land train which takes you around the farm to view many of their rare breeds in their fields. As we were visiting during the week and outside of the Summer period it was only running twice a day so its worth checking when you arrive. Monkey really enjoyed seeing the deer, sheep, miniature ponies, lamas and donkeys. There is also a nature trail which you can explore although we opted to head back to the rest of the farm and visit the piggery instead.

Follys Farm

Zoo 

Follys FarmFrom the farm we headed over the the zoo area, planning to see as many of the animal as possible before Monkey ran out of steam. We saw some of our favourites such as the meerkats, camels, monkeys, penguins and  lemurs. They were all in lovely big enclosures and many of the structures looked new. We wandered into the avery and caught feeding time, as the keepers feed locus to some of the birds. Monkey was fascinated by this, not having seen locus before or seen birds that ate them!

Follys Farm

We headed round to see the pride of Lions and caught Hugo residing over his lionesses on his favourite lookout spot. He was really magnificent and there was lots of information available on him but also in the exhibit itself. There are two large chalk boards which break down the lions’s anatomy and movement, really educational for older children. Although they were all outside when we visited there is also the option to view them inside as well.

Follys Farm

I think the animal experience which will stay with me and I hope Monkey for a long time is the feeding of the Giraffes. Throughout the day there are opportunities to see some of the animals being fed. You are given a list of when and where on the map supplied on entrance to the park. We walked up to the viewing platform not really expecting the keeper to join us there with bucket of food, but he did! Monkey was about 3ft away from three giraffes enjoying their lunch. It was fascinating to watch, after a short talk the keeper took questions, including some from Monkey! If you visit I would definitely make sure you arrive with the giraffes at 12.30 as many places charge for you to get this close!

Follys Farm

Follys FarmWe stopped for our own lunch in the Carasol Woods where they have both a cafe offering sandwiches and cakes and a burger bar offering various fast food options. Monkey opted for chicken nuggets and chips. We sat next to a huge play area, there is plenty of seating so even when the weathers bad I can imagine there is plenty of room. There are various play apparatus for the different ages including soft play for the under 6s and a large wooden structure which reached to the top of the barn. Monkey had itchy feet as soon as he sat down wanting to go and explore. He was too young to play on his own so Hubby went on the wooden structure with him. He was relieved to find unlike other experience there was plenty of room for him. Which meant he did not have to crawl, kneel or bend and was able to enjoy the experience much more. We had trouble convincing Monkey to leave it to look around further!

Follys Farm

FunFair

Follys FarmThis was the area which I was most intrigued about. When I saw that there is an extra charge I did wonder if we would end up spending a fortune. But I need not have worried as ride tokens are 50p each and most of the rides Monkey was interested on were one token rides. It was great as it meant we didn’t need to limit him too much. They also have old arcade machines around the outside which take small change and some traditional funfair game stalls which also run on a token. However we stuck to the rides, all the rides are vintage and have been rescued in some shape or form and restored. They are truly beautiful, each has a sign which explains its heritage and for a number of them they have old pictures of the original ride in operation. The Carousel was originally built in 1922.

Follys Farm

Follys FarmMonkey enjoyed several of the rides including his first trip on a ghost train! I was a little worried at this point since he has developed a fear of the dark but he was fine and really enjoyed it. He also played on the cars, a muffin the mule ride which he loved and went on twice, a little train and some of the other vehicle rides. They also have some more grown up options such as the waltzer, dodgems, speedway, caterpillar and swings. Some of the older rides require two tokens pre rider but thats still fantastic value when you think a ride on one of the travelling fairs can cost up to £3!

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The best part is that it is all undercover which means you are not restricted to fair weather days. Overall I am very impressed with just how much is under cover. If were closer I would seriously consider buying an annual pass since it represents amazing value.

Adventure Play

By the time we got to this area it was mid afternoon so we didn’t do it justice at all. One family was actually saying that they will be returning on a Boomerang ticket later in the week to make sure they see everything. Monkey did have a play on the pedal tractors, but we never made it to the big wheel in the background. I really like that there are plenty of ride ons in different sizes. Unlike other places we have visited I would imagine even when its busy children will still be able to get on the things they want to.

Follys Farm

Follys FarmMonkey also had a play in the sand area, again there are lots of diggers to sit on and play with. Metal ones for the slightly older children and wooden versions for the younger children to drive. The sheer size of the area reminded me of Digger land itself. Especially as they had some small Backhoes which you can dig in hardcore with. There is a small additional charge for these and the big wheel.

There is also a number of play structures outside, Monkey chose the pirate ship to play on initially before having an ice cream. They are also at the moment building two further boats which are simply huge in size and sit within their pirate adventure area. You get the feeling that they have tried to cater for all age groups which is not an easy task but many of the activities have smaller options for the younger children. This is ideal if you have multiple kids spanning different age groups.

Things you need to know

  • Entrance prices vary depending on the time of year you are visiting, adults are £12.95 during peak times and £10.95 at others. Their concession ticket which covers children 3-15, senior citizens and those with a disability is £10.95 during peak and £9.95 at other times.
  • On their website there is a calendar which shows peak/non peak times as well as closed periods. They are closed during the week from November to the middle of February. Weekends they are open as usual apart form the Christmas weekend.
  • Opening times vary depending on session, always opening at 10am and closing between 4pm and 5.30pm.
  • More information is available on their website which you can find here

Overall we were very very impressed and would highly recommend a visit, they more than deserve their title of best day out in Wales. The sheer amount of things to do would mean that should we visit Pembrokeshire again we will definitely go back. The park is clean, there is good signage and amenities. I am so glad we made the decision to visit, Monkey still talks about the giraffes now.

Signature

We were given entrance tickets for Folly Farm for the purpose of this review, but all opinions and views are my own.

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The Freerange Family

43 Comments

  1. October 23, 2015 / 7:13 am

    We absolutely loved Folly Farm! We couldn’t believe how big it was, and I totally agree it was so clean! I would visit every week if I lived close by. This a fab review with beautiful pictures xx

    • October 28, 2015 / 10:20 pm

      Aw thank you 🙂 really took us by surprise, other farms better look out they have a lot to live up to now! Xx

  2. October 23, 2015 / 8:46 am

    I wish we had farms like this here in Reading and the surrounding area’s! The farms you can visit are quite dier! It’s a shame you missed out on the feeding sessions but I’m glad Monkey was able to milk a cow, what an amazing experience! My son would of loved that digger area when he was younger, he was Bob the Builder mad and loved anything and everything like that! I must visit Folly Farm if I am ever close by, it looks amazing xx

    • October 28, 2015 / 10:23 pm

      It’s a shame when they are expensive as it puts you off and always need it to deliver much more in comparison! Definitely one to put on the list and if I ever come across anything near Reading I will let you know xx

  3. October 23, 2015 / 8:52 am

    Folly farm looks great, there are so many things to do like activities for the kids and also animals too, I would definitely give folly farm a visit if I am in Wales one day.

    • October 28, 2015 / 10:23 pm

      They never get bored! There’s so much glad it’s made it onto your list 🙂

  4. October 23, 2015 / 10:48 am

    Folly Farm looks amazing and what great value for money! I can’t believe how much there is to do, it’s almost like a mini resort! 🙂 x

    • October 28, 2015 / 10:24 pm

      It really is!! We would have gone back if we had been staying local for longer X

  5. October 23, 2015 / 10:27 pm

    We used to visit Wales a lot as a kid and had some brilliant holidays there.Farms are a great place for kids to get up close to animals that they wouldn’t normally see every day.

    • October 28, 2015 / 10:29 pm

      I think we will definitely be going back to Wales as Monkey loved it xx

  6. October 24, 2015 / 6:46 am

    When I saw that it was a farm, I expected to read about pigs and cows but this sounds like an amazing place with a huge range of animals, including lions. My kids would absolutely love it! And I would too. We holiday in Wales so will definitely go next time we are there.

    • October 28, 2015 / 10:30 pm

      I know that’s what we thought initially too! I hope you have a brilliant time when you do make it X

  7. October 24, 2015 / 8:13 am

    There are so many things to do, I imagine it takes a whole day to see everything.

  8. Sara Handy Herbs
    October 24, 2015 / 10:19 am

    Folly Farm looks like an amazing place to visit! It looks like the perfect day out with such a wide range of activities on offer. Monkey looks like he had a great day – fab photos 🙂 #busydoinglife

    • October 28, 2015 / 10:31 pm

      Aw thank you it really was would highly recommend xx

  9. jermbarnes
    October 24, 2015 / 12:26 pm

    Place looks great. I really like that wristband idea. It seems like something like that should be available more places.

    • October 28, 2015 / 10:31 pm

      Yes agreed completely it wouldn’t take a lot of investment for other places to do the same!

  10. .Sara. (@OoSerzoO)
    October 24, 2015 / 12:51 pm

    Wow. I want to go to Wales just go to Folly Farm! It sounds and looks awesome! I like the idea of the land train. And I LOVE miniature ponies. The zoo sounds and looks amazing, too! The Meerkats are so cute and I should imagine feeding the giraffes is fantastic experience, I love giraffes, hehe.The soft play looks and sounds epic!!! Gosh, there’s so much to do and see. I really, really do want to go to Folly Farm, I’m going to add it to my bucket list I think! 🙂

    • October 28, 2015 / 10:33 pm

      Aw great you won’t be sorry there really is so much! I hope you have a brilliant time xx

  11. October 24, 2015 / 1:39 pm

    Oh wow, this place is unreal!! I can’t believe how much is in it! A farm, zoo, play center & fair rolled into one. I’m really happy to hear they keep the barn so clean. It sounds like a really great day out for the family. Lovely review hun x

    • October 28, 2015 / 10:35 pm

      It was amazing we really weren’t expecting it. Thank you for your lovely comments xx

  12. October 24, 2015 / 4:28 pm

    Love this place. We also visited it whilst on holiday at Bluestone and even though the weather was awful we had a brilliant time. Your photos are lovely and brought back some nice memories. We will definitely go again if we’re in the area. #justanotherlinky

    • October 28, 2015 / 10:36 pm

      It’s great that have so much to do inside as well! Good to hear you had a great time. We would definitely go back too xx

  13. Angela Milnes
    October 24, 2015 / 4:29 pm

    This looks like a lot of fun! I’d like to take Sylvia to a farm, it’s something she has not done yet. Angela x

  14. October 24, 2015 / 5:14 pm

    Oh this is our favourite place on earth! We go about 6 times a year – we live ten minutes away! Infact we were there for Pickles birthday earlier this month. Can’t wait for the Rhino. Kaz x

    • October 28, 2015 / 10:38 pm

      I am so jealous you are so close! I am sure the Rhino will be fantastic look forward to seeing the pictures xx

  15. October 24, 2015 / 8:27 pm

    wow! what a great place! if only I was closer 🙁 #BusyDoingLife

  16. October 24, 2015 / 9:45 pm

    Wow this is the biggest farm I’ve ever seen!! Even more reason for us to have a trip to Wales now #busydoinglife

    • October 28, 2015 / 10:39 pm

      We had a really great time would highly recommend xx

  17. Coombe Mill
    October 25, 2015 / 11:54 am

    I’ve heard of Folly Farm, probably through Country Kids but never been, as you say it is way more than a farm. A real animal selection with the zoo too and I love your locus eating shot, how perfect that is! They must have some serious numbers for their farm ride with that lovely long trailer, and what an amazing fun fair of ammusment rides too, I can see why this is a full day out and more. Thank you for sharing on Country Kids.

    • October 31, 2015 / 3:08 pm

      It’s definitely worth a look if you are ever over that way 🙂 thanks for hosting X

  18. Michelle Murray
    October 25, 2015 / 9:26 pm

    I have heard about Folly farm before. I think once we were close to it on a family holiday but we didn’t go which I’m sad about as it looks like a great day out

  19. October 25, 2015 / 11:35 pm

    It looks brilliant! I wanted to take my children there when we visited Bluestone back in February but unfortunately it was closed for the winter. Definitely a good excuse for us to return though xx

  20. October 28, 2015 / 7:24 pm

    This looks amazing! I can well imagine that one day wouldn’t be enough – i think I could spend half my time in the zoo, and my daughter loves animals, so we’d be spending most of the rest at the farm I suspect.

    • November 1, 2015 / 10:42 pm

      They have Rhinos now as well! They moved in at half term – good excuse to go back!! Xx

  21. October 28, 2015 / 9:24 pm

    Great review and lovely pictures. We have been here and it’s just amazing isn’t it! Thanks for linking up to #justanotherlinky xx

  22. October 29, 2015 / 4:10 pm

    Oh wow that place looks amazing! Looks like so much fun for a family day out!

    thanks for linking up with #justanotherlinky

  23. November 2, 2015 / 10:09 pm

    It was brilliant, thank you for hosting xx

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