Last Saturday we’d arranged to meet up with friends and spend an afternoon at Green Dragon Rare Breeds Farm and Eco Centre. It’s somewhere I’ve been meaning to take Monkey since in opened a few years ago, but for one reason and another it’s never happened. It was time to put that right, although typically the English weather wasn’t going to play nicely.
Situated between Bicester and Aylesbury, the Centre is well signposted and there’s a large car park right outside the visitor entrance. Going out with friends I find Monkey is more likely to try things, and as his friend was buying animal feed, Monkey decided he wanted some too. We headed straight to the Animal Barn as my friend L had spotted that there were baby goats on show. I think we might have been more excited about that prospect than the boys.
In the barn we found Donkeys, Ponies, various breeds of Goats and Pigs, with piglets (one happy me).
Each pen had labelled telling us about the animals, and whether we were allowed to feed them or not. After a bit of convincing, Monkey actually fed the goats himself, another step forward.
Outside we discovered the Pet Cabin and outside area with Rabbits. Inside there were Mice and Gerbils.
For some reason Monkey was fixated with seeing Cows and as we explored the paddocks we could see Chickens, Goats, Sheep and in the distance, Cows. One happy Monkey. Each paddock had a great information point talking about the various animals too.
By this point it really was raining hard, and with the wind blowing, not the most pleasant weather to be outside in. With our feed bags empty, we were heading back inside when the boys spotted the sandpit. It was too big a draw to be missed and off they went. Digging, and sandcastle building. There is an area which is covered, L and I hid under there and persuaded the boys to move undercover for their excavations.
When we were all just too cold we headed into the Soft Play Barn which also houses the Cafe. Hot chocolates and homemade cakes were definitely in order before the boys headed into the play area for a run around. Note: My son, going into soft play – without me, and willingly.
You might have spotted a post I wrote earlier in the week about Monkey and Go-Karts. As part of an afternoon at Green Dragon Rare Breeds Farm and Eco Centre, Monkey overcame a fear and got on a go-kart, and loved every minute. They are free or the kids to try, there’s lots of space and ample vehicles available for lots of children to enjoy.
We also spotted a great outdoors play area, along with lots of picnic benches to enjoy on a drier day.
In the Messy Play Barn the boys discovered an area where they can uncover fossils, there was also an area for younger children with ride on vehicles, and ample seating for adults as well as room for indoor picnics.
An afternoon at Green Dragon Rare Breeds Farm and Eco Centre was well spent, and even on a wet, cold February day we’d had lots of fun and left as the centre closed. I can imagine on a dry day we’d have been arrived earlier and made more of a day of it. We’ll certainly be back again to spend more time with the animals and explore the farm and nature trails. I’ve also read that they want to create a wildlife pond – that would definitely be a draw for us. It’s a little gem of a place, and well worth a visit if you’re in the area.