Having my niece and nephew visit me in Newcastle is always a joy and I love planning family days out for us at local attractions. Whitehouse Farm had been on the list for a while, many of my friends who are parents have spoken very highly of it and knowing how much the kids love animals I was sure it would get the thumbs up!
I wasn’t wrong, they absolutely loved it, as did their Grandma and Grandad, Auntie and Uncle! Although, one thing that did surprise me was how much there was to see and do; I was expecting Whitehouse Farm to be a place to spend a couple of hours but there was more than enough to keep us occupied for a full day. Here’s a few highlights from our recent visit on sunny day in August…
The farm is just outside Morpeth, about a 20 minute drive North of Newcastle. We arrived just before 11am and after stocking up on animal feed for 50p a bag from the entrance hut we headed straight for the cow shed where Jack and Emily got the chance to bottle feed a calf.
It was still the school holidays so Whitehouse Farm was running a full programme of events that meant boredom didn’t stand a chance! After feeding the calves and washing our hands thoroughly (why do kids take like 20 minutes to wash their hands?) we made our way to the birds of prey.
I was hugely impressed by all the staff at Whitehouse Farm, everyone was so happy and enthusiastic. The lovely man who introduced us to an impressive European Eagle Owl was no exception! Visitors had the chance to get up close to this gorgeous creature, his handler let him fly on to the children’s backs and the adult’s shoulders which was a unique experience and provided this brilliant photo opportunity!
We also got to hold a little Southern White Faced owl called Gizmo, he was such a cutie! The kids and I wanted to take him home.
All the animal talks were really informative, we loved getting so close to such a wide range of creatures and learning more about them. The Meerkats were a particular favourite (although I wasn’t a huge fan of the maggots we fed them with)! For the brave, there was also the chance to get close to reptiles and critters during Beastie Shows but I have to be honest, I deliberately avoided the Tarantulas, Hissing Cockroaches, and Albino Burmese Python!
The cuddly animals and farmyard friends were much more appealing to me and it was lovely to see how well cared for they were with lots of space to run around in! As it was such a warm day we spent a lot of time outside feeding and stroking the pygmy goats, llamas, alpacas, sheep, donkeys and ponies. The kids were also delighted to see real life Bambi (Fallow Deer) plus Emus and Wallabies.
If the animals weren’t enough, Whitehouse Farm also has toy tractors, trampolines, bouncy castles and an adventure playground which are all included in the entrance fee. The only things we had to pay extra for were the indoor karts and the Donut Dash but I don’t think we spent more than a fiver.
With so much to do the kids were worn out, we needed to refuel! Whitehouse Farm has a huge café which had lots of yummy smells coming from it and the prices looked reasonable but we had packed a picnic so took advantage of the weather and ate at one of the outdoor tables. There are lots of picnic tables in a big barn too for when it’s not as warm.
After lunch we enjoyed an hilarious family show with Magic Steve in the entertainment barn. As well as magic tricks and jokes which had the grown ups laughing as hard as the kids, Steve had also organised a sports day. Sadly I was rubbish at the slow motion race and my Mum fared no better in the egg and spoon but Jack, Emily and my Dad all won races and walked away with vouchers to spend in the gift shop!
We squeezed so much fun in to our day but still didn’t manage to see and do everything. Tractor rides, face-painting, panning for gold, getting lost in the maze and scrambling around in the soft play will all have to wait till our return visit, which I hope will be sooner rather than later.
I have already pencilled the following events in my diary and suggest that you do too!
Oct 2nd – Grand Parents Day – Free entry for Grand Parents
Oct 22nd – Oct 30th – Halloween Spooktacular
Nov 19th – Dec 24th – Santa’s Christmas Cracker
To plan your day out at Whithouse Farm head to http://www.whitehousefarmcentre.co.uk/