Friday, 8 July 2011

Fun for all the family

Below is my “Big Day Out” column from the Saturday, July 2, 2011, Swansea edition of the South Wales Evening Post.

Fun for all the family
A big day out!
RICHARD THOMAS heads to ...
Folly Farm near Tenby in Pembrokeshire.
Folly Farm Adventure Park and Zoo is the top paid-for visitor attraction in Wales and winner of the Best Family Day Out in Pembrokeshire.
Located near the tourist town of Tenby in the beautiful Pembrokeshire countryside, Folly Farm offers affordable fun days out for the whole family. With six fun-filled amusement and activity zones, some of which are undercover, there is something to enjoy for all ages, whatever the weather.
Folly Farm opened in 1988 following the decision by the owners, the Williams and Ebsworth families, to diversify from dairy farming into the leisure industry. In 1997 Pets Corner opened and in 2002 the first zoo animals arrived.
More recently, in 2009, Folly Farm welcomed Wales' only giraffe to their zoo, a move that coincided with Folly Farm winning Premier Family Day Out at the Pembrokeshire Tourism Awards that year.
Today Folly Farm attracts 400,000 visitors each year, making it Wales' top paid-for tourist attraction.
Don’t forget to bring a camera with you. Tickets cost £9.00 for adults and £8.00 for children (3-15 year olds) on days when the park is open 10.00am to 5.30pm. On days when Folly Farm closes at 5.00pm tickets only cost £8.50 and £7.50. Toddlers two years old and under visit Folly Farm for free! Food and drink are available at Folly Farm’s Ploughman's Restaurant.
Folly Farm's Jolly Barn is home to a huge variety of farmyard animals, including sheep, pigs, donkeys, horses, chickens and other farm animals. There's also loads of opportunities for children to get hands-on during the Pet Handling sessions in the nearby Pets' Centre which is home to rabbits, guinea pigs, tortoises, parrots and lots more.
But with over 50 different species and more than 250 animals, Folly Farm’s zoo is the big highlight.
As well as giraffe Folly Zoo has zebra, Bactrian camels, pythons and other animals to see. And with zoo keeper talks, the chance to watch the animals during feeding times, and a whole host of fascinating facts on Folly Zoo’s animal enclosure signs, you’ll go home knowing a lot more about the different species.
But Folly Farm is much more than just a zoo. The 200 acre park is also home to Europe's largest undercover vintage funfair with a huge collection of working rides and stalls lovingly restored to their 20th century glory. A vintage big wheel and giant helter skelter ride sit just outside the funfair completing the old time funfair experience.
And if all that isn’t enough there’s even a go-kart racetrack!
Folly Farm will be open 10.00am to 5.30pm daily throughout most of April. You can check their opening times for a specific date on the official Folly Farm website at:
Their address is: Folly Farm, Begelly, Kilgetty, Pembrokeshire, SA68 0XA. For more information you can email or call on 01834 812731.