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By Jane Mansell

Posted on August 29th, 2005


Green Meadows Petting Farm is a less expensive and refreshing alternative to the theme parks and the ideal place for animal lovers of any age. It is an opportunity to learn about the animals and have fun at the same time. You can stay for the whole day if you wish - there are refreshments to buy but you can take a packed lunch and enjoy it in one of the picnic areas. There are play areas for the children and lots of trees which provide a shady refuge from the heat of the sun. The visit does include a two-hour guided walk visiting the animals but for little children who tire easily "Little Wagons For Little Farmers" are available. This gives an indication of how child-friendly this place is. We took our seven-year-old granddaughter Amber and she loved it and still talks about it. The only downside was that we hadn't allowed ourselves enough time, so plan to go for the whole day.

One of the things that impressed us was how organised everything was - it's not just a place where you wander around looking at the animals and petting them if you feel brave enough, you will be allocated to a small group with children of a similar age and you will have your own tour guide during the two-hour tour which takes place soon after you enter. The tour is geared to the age of the children, so they are less likely to get bored or frustrated and our guide was excellent in the way she related to the children, asking them questions, telling them about the animals and encouraging them to get involved. You will visit some of the 300 plus animals they have there - including pigs, geese, goats, cattle and many more - learn about them and have the opportunity to pet them. Each child is encouraged to milk a cow and ride a donkey. The tour ends with a tractor-drawn hayride which is great fun, and when we visited there was a pumpkin patch.

This place really gets the balance between having fun and learning just right and we will certainly be paying a return visit.

Green Meadows is situated about 5 miles along Poinciana Boulevard, which is off Highway 192 close to mile marker 10. Admission is currently $19 for adults or children, children under two go free and seniors pay $16. Our visit cost just over $50 for the three of us which we thought was great value. If you visit their website you can get a discount coupon for $2.

Green Meadows is less than a mile from Amber Villa, which is the perfect base for all the many attractions in the Orlando area and beyond.

Visit our website to see full details and take a virtual tour.
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