If you're looking for a great day out that's easy on the pocket, then make your way to Millets Farm Centre at Frilford in Oxfordshire. It's a family owned and run farm with oodles of things to do for all ages. No wonder it has been awarded a Visit England Quality Rose Marque.
Pick Your Own Millets Farm Centre was one of the first farms in the UK to set up a pick your own back in the 1970s. There's lots on offer from strawberries to runner beans. Check the board to see what's ready for picking then pick up a punnet and off you go. There's something about really fresh, just picked fruit and vegetables that can't be matched by supermarkets. Kids will love this activity too and it's a great way to learn where our food comes from.
If you fancy the taste of fresh seasonal fruit and vegetables but not in the mood to pick your own then check out the farm shop. It's crammed full of delicious fresh food. The Butchery has an amazing selection of sausages with 40 lines from their total of 150 available each day. They've even won a couple of competitions. Making a choice from the bakery is just as hard, I stared at the cakes for ages and my son shouted 'cake cake cake'. Millets Farm Centre was the national finalist in Local Food Awards for Farm Retailer of the Year in 2011.
See the animals Pass under the bridge and down Pettigoat Lane so see the animals. When I visited, there were alpacas, sheep and cows among others. My son was particularly taken with the huge pigs making great snorts when the farmer came to feed them.
Get sliding Next to Pettigoat Lane is a good sized playpark so that kids can run off steam. There are the usual slides, swings and sandpit as well as a small ride on tractor and digger for over 3's. The area is surrounded by grass and away from the carpark, so you can relax on a bench and confidently keep an eye on your little ones.
Restaurant After a good run around outside, step into the restaurant which overlooks the trout lake. There's a full menu using locally sourced ingredients or just relax with a cup of tea and huge portion of cake. On a sunny day there's plenty of space to sit outside and enjoy the view.
Frosts Garden Centre Millets Farm Centre is also home to Frosts Garden Centre. If you're inspired by the pick your own you could purchase some seeds to grow at home or saunter through the shop for a wide selection of gifts.
Get Lost! In the height of summer, why not explore Millets Maize Maze. Planted in April with pathways running through the corn over almost 8 acres, this is definitely a challenge. By mid September, the maize is harvested and fed to cattle with the fields ready for a a new creation the next year. Have a look on their website for some great ariel pictures
There's no entry charge to Millets Farm Centre and lots of parking. It's a great day out for all the family or for a quick stop to grab some sausages for your BBQ.