For her very 1st birthday, we took the little lady to Almond Valley Heritage Centre in Livingston at the weekend. We’ve never taken her to any children’s farms or ‘bigger’ visitor attractions before (I’m not counting Tollcross Park Children’s Farm) so it was quite exciting for all of us!
The farm is excellent. There are quite a few different ‘zones’ to wander around and see what’s what. The small animal area was the first one we came to and it is fantastic. They have some super friendly (and clearly very patient) rabbits and guinea pigs. We patted some rabbits and guinea pigs and a little baby chick and a cockroach. I don’t think the little lady even realised that cockroach was a live animal, but she had an absolutely amazing time patting all the fluffs. We spent such a long time with them I actually don’t think she’d have ever gotten bored in there.
They have a duck & goose area – the little lady’s current favourite animal – which we spent a good while watching and running around the outside of. There’s also a barn with cows, pigs, donkeys and sheep (and probably other animals). And there are lots of animals in outside enclosures too. We all loved it – the little lady adored seeing all the different animals, and we loved seeing how much fun she had and how exciting everything was!
There are also train rides and tractor rides (amongst other things) that we didn’t do, but which looked pretty fun.
The Play Area
The play area is pretty huge. There are swings, bits to climb on and hide in. There are tons of trampolines including one giant ‘bouncy pillow’ and some baby dedicated trampolines that were a huge hit with the little lady.
They also have go karts and pedal tractors and a bunch of other things that I’ve since forgotten. All in all, it’s a kids bouncy, swingy, go karty dream. I was a bit jealous that I couldn’t get a shot on the bouncy pillow actually; it looked really fun.
We didn’t go to the soft play – it was way too sunny to be indoors and the little lady was having so much fun that it really wasn’t necessary.
Admission is £6.50 for adults, £5 if you’re retired (not sure how you’d provide proof of retirement though!) and £5 for kids aged 3-15. Under 3’s are free. There are small additional charges for their indoor soft play, tractor rides and train rides.
Almond Valley is roughly a 40 minute drive from Glasgow. We had the sat nav on (I’m a horrifically bad navigator whether driving or not and the sat nav reduces arguments by about 95%) so it was easy for us to find. It is signposted when you get off the M8 though. There is plenty of free parking on site. And there are designated picnic areas on the farm, and there is also a cafe which we didn’t try out this time.
Almond Valley is really great for young kids – definitely lots for a toddler to see & do. They even have baby only trampolines! The little lady is still young and I don’t have any older kids, but I’m pretty sure it would entertain them up to the end of primary school age anyway. (I figure if I enjoyed it, then an older kid probably would too…)
I would highly recommend Almond Valley. We will most definitely be back.
Almond Valley Heritage Trust is located on the outskirts of Livingstone at Almond Valley Heritage Centre, Millfield, Livingston, EH54 7AR