Freelance writer, mum of two who loves living in sunny Perth.
Published September 11th 2013
Gumboots mandatory for farmstay fun
For a short break with the family, a farm stay makes an excellent choice to keep young and old both relaxed and entertained. It's a real break from the norm and for the adults in the party, you feel all your day to day worries simply melt away the moment you slip on your gum boots. For the younger folk its about animal interactions, the excitement of collecting eggs for breakfast and the wonderment of playing in the open air to your heart's content. If you're thinking of taking your family away for a break, at Weekend Notes, we've done the hard work for you and compiled a list of top farm stays all within a 2 hour drive of Perth. So what are you waiting for? Say goodbye to the office, grab the kids, get your bags packed and don't forget your gumboots.
Collecting fresh eggs for breakfast is childs play
Accommodation: Comprises of one, two and three bedroom cottages in addition to bed and breakfast facilities in the main farm house. Cottages are extremely comfortable with real attention to detail taken to ensure that visitors have everything that they need for their break away from home. On site facilities include a games room, kids play area, and an abundance of picturesque countryside to lose yourself in.
Animal Magic: There are animals aplenty on Lavendale Farm and you are actively encouraged join in with feeding time which takes place every day around 5pm in the barns. Animals include horses, ponies, cows, sheep, pigs, goats, chickens, alpacas, ducks and even an ostrich.
Locality: Lavendale Farm is nestled in the beautiful countryside surrounding York. Local activities include visiting historic York itself with its Motor Museum, Old Gaol, and Swinging Bridge in addition to an abundance of walks available in the Avon area.
Based in Harvey, approximately 1.5 hours south of Perth.
Accommodation: Consisting of four self contained chalets sleeping between 4-6 persons complete with air conditioning, TV, and veranda BBQ perfect for easy evening catering. One of the chalets is suitable for wheelchair access. Linen, cots and high chairs are available to hire. Onsite facilities include a play area complete with trampoline and cubby house, in addition to a refreshing swimming pool that is just perfect for cooling off in when the temperatures soar.
Animal Magic: Harvey Hills plays home to some gorgeous friendly animals who love to be hand fed. Take your time meeting the local kangaroos, goats, donkeys, miniature ponies, sheep, cattle, ducks, chickens, rabbits and birds
Locality: Harvey Hills is set in 100 acres of farm land with views over the spectacular Harvey Dam. Local attractions include the beautiful Harvey Dam itself, wineries, fresh produce manufacturers, cheese factories and some great playgrounds for kids.
Accommodation: If you're looking for a farm stay that offers real solitude then look no further than Settlers Rest where you'll be the only visitors. Accommodation is a three bedroom cottage that fits up to 8 persons so your family can really stretch out and enjoy the space. All linen is taken care of and the cottage is fully equipped for a break away from it all; they've even provided some toys for the kids.
Animal Magic: If you fancy yourself as an Old MacDonald, there's lots to get involved in on the farm if you so desire. Head to the barns at 5pm and take part in feeding time and meet the friendly horses, ponies, sheep, alpacas, goats, rabbits, chickens and cows.
Locality: Based in the beautiful Swan Valley, there is an abundance of attractions on your door step. Choose from chocolate factories, wineries, wildlife centres, ice creamery, golf centres and so much more. Check out the Weekend Notes guide for things to do on the Swan River here.
Accommodation: Chalets are individually designed with an arty flair. Sleeping 6 persons each, there is plenty of space for your family. Kitchens are well equipped, and chalets feature TV, DVD player and a BBQ for casual easy meals. Linen hire is extra. Kids will enjoy the playing in the playground and taking turns on the trampoline.
Animal Magic: There is a lot of animal interaction on the menu at Bluehills Farmstay, with kids particularly loving the pony rides on offer. Kids can get involved in the hand feeding of the chickens, and can collect eggs ready for their breakfast. Other animals include all your farm yard favourites of sheep, cows, rabbits and pigs.
Locality: Based in the vicinity of the Harvey Hills Farmstay, you can enjoy the same local attractions and beauty of the Harvey Dam.
Accommodation: A mix of cabins and cottages are on offer to your family with a choice of either 2 or 3 bedrooms. Cots and high chairs are available for hire. Accommodation is perfectly equipped for a self catering break and a BBQ is provided for fresh meals on your veranda. You can even order local marron to be delivered to your cabin for just $40 a kilo.
Animal Magic: Join the guided tour each day on the farm and get to meet local favourites including the cows Tinkerbelle, Bluebelle, Clairabelle, Snowbelle. Many of the animals have been named, so by the end of your stay you really will be on first name terms. Enjoy meeting (and feeding) a choice of sheep, chickens, geese, kangaroos and Ernie the Emu.
Locality: If you're bringing kids with you, a real must will be to head to the fantastic kids adventure playground at Donnybrook. Other local attractions include wineries, lavender farm and forest walks.
So the only question that remains, is which farm stay you are going to choose for your next stay.
Are there any other farm stays that you would recommend? Our Weekend Notes readers would love to hear from you.
I live on this farm for over a year now, and never have I lived at a more beautiful place like this. The farm includes lakes for swimming, horses in wild mobs and for riding, cattle, sheep and chooks. Two friends and myself are loving to look after the farm stay cottage, so that everything is constantly clean, has beautiful flowers and enough wood for the 2 open wood fires. We love to show people what we do, which is very different to most farms in Australia. We farm completely without chemicals, hormones or feedlots. Our focus is to farm the cleanest and greenest possible which makes it safe for every guest to roam over the entire property without being exposed to toxic chemicals which are usually used in conventional farming!
The fruit of our work we sell at our farm shop, so that no guest has to worry about bringing meat for the BBQ or seasonal veggies
I´m looking forward to meet every guest to let them have a taste of our full and beautiful life,and maybe you are the next?