Willows Farm Village
Willows Farm Village, Hertfordshire
23rd November – 24th December 2011
Reviewed by Charlotte Green
Willows Farm Village is situated on a very large site with plenty of animals and activities that means you can easily spend a whole day there, without your little ones getting bored at all. There is lots of parking available and everything is well signposted. All the staff were very friendly and helpful. Aside from food and drinks in the cafe, everything is free once you have paid to get in. And you can easily take a picnic with you as there are numerous picnic benches situated all around the farm. There is even an indoor, heated picnic area for the winter!
As for the activities, there is almost too many too mention. They have a wonderful indoor play area for all ages of children, with a cafe for the adults to sit and watch. There is also an indoor JCB young drivers zone, which my daughter absolutely loved. There are lots of outdoor activities, including a sandpit with diggers, a couple of fairground rides, an agility play trail, a bouncy castle and a real tractor ride.
And all that is before I’ve even mentioned the animals! There is a lovely seated area where the children can hold a guinea pig on their laps. My daughter loved this. They have all the usual farmyard animals and they all look very healthy and well cared for. They have hand washing facilities near all the different animals and lots of information around the site about how to stop diseases spreading and stay clean in the farm. I thought this was very good.
The Santa’s spectacular grotto event was exactly that! Spectacular! The entrance to Santa’s grotto was lit up and decorated with elves, snowman, gingerbread men, penguins and polar bears. There was so much to look at while waiting in the queue, which stopped the children from getting too bored. Santa’s 'little helpers' were very cheery and friendly. The room that Santa sat in was beautifully decorated and Santa himself was lovely. My daughter had a nice chat with him and had her photo taken. We didn't feel rushed at all, which was nice. He then gave her a magic key to his toy shop so that she could choose any toy she wanted. There was a huge selection of toys to choose from and they were all very good quality. The photo was taken by a professional photography company, so was a little on the expensive side to buy, but did come in a lovely mount and was a very nice picture. I was very impressed with the Santa experience.
As we left the farm we exited through the gift shop which sold lots of lovely gifts, keepsakes, nic nacs and locally produced food. There were also a few other little shops to visit, including a kids clothes shop which had some gorgeous clothes, a children’s furniture shop, a sports shop, a photography shop and a forge showroom.
My daughter and I had a fantastic day at Willows and I will definitely be taking her back there again. I would recommend it to anyone wanting a fun day out for their children.