farms for kids near manchester

Now the little lady is nearing 2 years old and a proper toddler, she’s up for bigger outings and more interactive activities. One thing I’ve discovered we both have a mutual love for is animals and therefore a trip to a farm seemed like the perfect mummy-daughter activity! That got me thinking that there may be some of you out there nearby who would benefit from a post about farms for kids near Manchester…so here’s three of my favourites so far with a little video to accompany them…

Farms for kids near Manchester

Smithill’s Open Farm

This farm is located in Bolton, about 20 minutes outside of Manchester in the car and is a must-visit for anyone kids or no kids! I loved it just as much as she did!

There’s parking there, it’s really nice and self-contained and it’s a good size to get around comfortably.

It has a session where you can actually meet, touch, feed and learn about the animals at the farm – which they host a few times a day. We thought this was incredible, as we got to hold a baby chick and a bunny rabbit and got to bottle feed lambs, stroke goats and even owls! I didn’t expect this level of hands-on interaction, so it was such a welcome surprise and a great way for the little ones to get used to animals and enjoy themselves.

There’s a basic cafe, that serves sausages, chips, sandwiches and that sort of thing. Not loads of room in there, but if the weather’s good, I’d suggest a picnic would be a nice idea as there’s a lovely outdoor play area and grass to sit on.

It’s £8 for adults and £7 for kids, with under 2’s being free. So if like me, you have a toddler, it’s a really cheap day out and you can make the most of it and stay as long as you want.

Here’s what we got up to:

Stockley Farm Park

This farm is located south of Manchester and about 30 minutes away by car and is really easy to get to! It’s the second farm we’ve visited together and it was really good fun.

The highlight for us was parking up in the car-park, you then get picked-up and driven to the farm by a tractor, sat on hay bails in the back of the wagon. The kids love this and it’s a really nice touch.

Again, they have the opportunity to touch the animals and feed the chickens etc. but our visit wasn’t quite as interactive as it was at Smithill’s. Though it is slightly larger, with a big outdoor play area with sand-pits, slides and frames for the older kids. They also have ride-on tractors and a soft-play area so it’s geared-up to keep the little one’s entertained around the animals too.

The cafe is a really good size with outdoor seating too and offers sandwiches, hot meals and specials of the day too. She had tomato and veg pasta and I had a lovely sausage barm with cheesey chips (it was my birthday after all!).

It’s £9.20 for adults and £8.20 for kids, with under 2’s being free. But if you buy online (which you can do right up until the night before), it’s a couple of £s cheaper!

You can definitely make a full day of this one!

Here’s what we got up to:

Reddish Vale Farm

This farm is just outside Stockport, so about 20-25 minute drive from South Manchester. It’s easy to not find it, as the entrance is located down a narrow road and it’s just off to one side, but it’s well worth the visit and certainly the cutest of the farms we’ve visited so far (small but perfectly formed).

There’s parking next to the farm and a decent sized Tea Rooms cafe with indoor and outdoor seating, by the stables. You can buy a bucket of carrots for £1, which you carry around and feed the animals with, which is a really nice touch and gets the kids involved.

They have donkeys, pigs, goats, sheep, ponies, horses and even alpacas. They also have an area where you can pet the smaller baby animals like baby ducks and rabbits and do pony grooming and rides occasionally too. There’s a little outdoor playground and some covered ride-on tractors/cars for the little kids to play on. Not the biggest, but keeps them occupied for a little while. We spent a nice morning here and finished with lunch before naptime, which was ideal – you wouldn’t necessarily be able to fill a day at Reddish Vale like you can at the others, as it’s much smaller.

At only £4 for adults, £3 for kids and free for under 2’s, it’s great value and a lovely half day out.

Here’s what we got up to:

Farmyard Fun

The more I research the area, the more I find there are farms and petting-zoos around and I think it’s such a great day out with the little’uns, great learning and interacting with animals that you don’t necessarily get to do that often. It’s fairly inexpensive and if you plan ahead and take a packed-lunch, it can be a really cheap day out. I’d definitely recommend!

I’m on the hunt for more farms for kids near Manchester – where can you recommend?