The opportunity of a trip to see cute farm animals always gets the thumbs up and a smile from my daughter, Eleanor.
Add activities such as jumping pillows, crazy golf and a JCB Big Dig Zone and that smile broadens even further.
But when you add dinosaurs to the mix, I’d imagine the roar of delight from any youngster can almost match that of a T-Rex!
So the opportunity to visit The National Forest Adventure Farm, in Tatenhill, near Burton upon Trent, this summer, was greeted with particular enthusiasm and excitement by my eight-year-old.
The popular attraction has launched its Dino Summer event, which includes a 9-acre maze, to run every day through the summer holidays.
There are a whole host of activities for youngsters to get involved in, making all that home schooling a distant memory!
Firstly, it’s important to state, for those parents still nervous about day trips, as we continue to face the challenges of Covid-19, the National Forest Adventure Farm has put strict hygiene practices in place.
I’ve always been impressed with the knowledge, passion and enthusiasm of the staff who work at the Farm.
And it’s clear , on arrival, that they are dedicated to making it a safe environment for visitors.
They have put a number of new measures in place including having a dedicated team of cleaners working throughout the day, extra wash facilities and hand sanitising stations as well as alterations to the current toilet block to create a one-way system.
Admission numbers is limited and visitors need to pre-book a dedicated time slot either in the morning or afternoon, as the farm undergoes a deep clean for an hour in the middle of the day between the two sessions.
All 22 staff have been fully trained and are formed into their own working ‘bubbles’ on site to limit interaction.
I found their efforts really reassuring and, as a family, we felt comfortable going around the attraction, throughout the morning.
Some interaction with dinosaurs was our first port of call. After all, that’s the theme right now!
First and foremost, Eleanor got to enjoy a ‘meat and greet’ with a velociraptor and T-Rex, a perfect opportunity for a photograph!
We then tackled the maize maze, which has been specifically designed with government health and safety guidance in mind.
You can explore the 3m wide paths as a family, looking for dinosaurs hidden deep in the maze while there was also a thrilling Raptor Run to retrieve dinosaur eggs while evading the velociraptor hidden among the maize plants.
While walking around the maze, there are also some fun facts about dinosaurs to add a little education to the trip. It was all great fun.
No visit to the farm is complete without a visit to see and feed the animals.
The rabbits and guinea pigs are always big hits with my daughter but she particular enjoyed the interaction with the particularly friendly goats, all of whom seemed interested in showing off to their captivated audience.
The spacious animal barn area is one-way and again people adhered to social distancing.
Having spent time with the animals, Eleanor enjoyed a ride on a pedal JCB as well as climbing a traversing wall.
A spot of Farmyard Crazy Golf followed before my daughter’s particular favourite, some bounce time on the jumping pillows, of which there are two, for under-eights and an over-eights.
For younger visitors there is also a Jurassic Canyon Fossil Dig where they can enjoy sand play.
All that activity and walking with dinosaurs is sure to leave you feeling hungry as well and there are takeaway facilities on-site to allow families to purchase a variety of meals and snacks to eat on site or takeaway at the end of their visit.
We left the farm having packed in plenty during our morning slot. It was a perfect start to the summer holidays where children have been desperate to enjoy some kind of normality once again.
Please note – the indoor space, including a three-storey soft play centre and restaurant will be closed until further notice to meet government guidelines.
Dino Summer runs every day until Tuesday, September 1, 2020. Online bookings open on Monday 13 July with tickets available at www.adventurefarm.co.uk priced from £7.99 to £9.99.