My boys love going to farm parks, but my youngest still has a daytime nap and a half day out at one of the big farm attractions can seem quite costly. I was excited to hear about Thrift Farm near to Milton Keynes being worth a trip and good value. I picked up a friend in Bicester which is only about 20 mins away from Thrift Farm and off we went with our little ones.
Thrift Farm Park
Thrift Farm Park have all the animals you expect and want to see on a farmyard visit, from the cheeky goats, to very loud geese and chilled out pigs. They also also have a couple of alpacas (I can never quite tell the difference between an alpaca and a llama) but they were super cute anyway as well as chickens, rabbits and guinea pigs and more. We bought some animal feed and had a great time feeding the goats.
The farm park is a perfect size for younger ones, large enough that they can explore on foot with plenty to keep them busy but not so big that you need a pushchair to get them back to the car park at the end of the day.
My little one absolutely adores tractors so we spent quite a bit of time in the outdoor play area. He loved sitting up on the big retro red tractor as well as hopping on board a little ride on to zoom about. There is also a wooden assault course which is fun for a good clamber over and a mini slide. It’s all enclosed with some picnic tables too so a good place for snack time.
Thrift Farm is all about the farm and outside but it does have a small room you can dip into. There are appealing wooden games on the wall but a few were out of reach for my son and his friend.
Eating & Drinking at Thrift Farm Park
Thrift Farm has picnic tables if you’re bringing your own food but I’d definitely recommend a visit to their Food4Thought cafe and restaurant. There’s a good selection of quality food, a lovely bright atmosphere and a little indoor play area. The play area was great as my friend and I were able to have a proper catch up while our food was being prepared and our little ones were happily occupied rather than getting cranky waiting in a highchair.
Thrift Farm is perfect for a half day trip and great for preschoolers. It might be a little on the young side for older kids looking for more, but animal lovers will have a great time and they seem to have events on during the school holidays which adds some extra activities in for the bigger kids. Compared to other farm parks, Thrift Farm is great value. I visited September 2018 for the first time and it was £5 for adults, £2.50 for kids and under 2s go free. A family ticket is £12.50.
A little background on Thrift Farm
Thrift Farm is a local service provided by Buckinghamshire County Council. Thrift Farm has been supporting adults with learning difficulties for over 40 years. Their supported employment scheme helps develop key skills which enable their clients to have a meaningful day and some to go on to find employment which is right for them. Their clients at Thrift Farm gain experience in a variety of roles, at Food4Thought Café, the Market Garden, the shop or out and about on the farm.
If you’re looking for more great day trips for preschoolers, check out this Red Kite Days guide or our Mum reviews on other farm parks and animal attractions in Oxfordshire, Berkshire and Buckinghamshire.