Down on the Farm – National Museum of Rural Life

Do you fancy a Woolly Weekend?  Read on…

Down on the Farm – Number 2 – As you may know Tots2Travel started a farming series looking for the best family days out in the countryside.  This time we’re shining a light on the rather fabulous National Museum of Rural Life in East Kilbride, just a short hop out of Glasgow.

This gem tells the story of Scotland’s rural people, the land, the tools and the machines.  For the more mechanically enthused (not me) the museum is home to combine harvesters, tractors, threshers and ploughs explaining how machines took the strain over the years.

My favourite section is the Garden Detectives room which, with a range of genuinely fun toys, engaged children with the food chain, split animals into mammals, invertebrates, amphibians and fish and allowed kids to use crayons to create reliefs of paw prints.  It was all really well thought out.

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Mr Toddler tackles ‘Clover’

Then it was time to jump aboard the colourful ‘Farm Explorer’, the museum’s tractor and trailer, for what’s described as a ‘rattling good ride’ up to the farm.  Here the lives, breeding patterns and traits of Aberdeen Angus cattle, Tamworth pigs (and adorable piglets), Ayrshire cows, Blackface sheep, Clydesdale horses and hens were all explained by Margaret our very amicable and informative museum guide.  It’s even possible to have a go at milking ‘Clover the Cow’ within the 1950s byre – Mr Toddler was a natural.  Then we took a step back in time 50 years by peaking inside the period farmhouse to sense what life was like for our rural forefathers.

Visitors can catch the Farm Explorer back to the museum but we chose to walk the sign-posted ten minute pedestrian route through the fields with our buggy and boogie board.

There is a small playpark at the museum which we cunningly bypassed by distracting Mr Toddler with some farm machinery up ahead.  Instead we dined at the museum’s Shielings Cafe which does a fine range of soups and sandwiches, bagels, coffees and cakes as well as burgers, fried haddock and chicken goujons.  There’s also a separate children’s menu.

20160528_100829And if you wondered what a Woolly Weekend was then it’s running on 11-12 June 2016 from 1000-1700.  Watch sheep being sheared, come face to face with some alpacas and discover more about how fleeces are transformed into wool and garments.   Author and illustrator Emily Mackenzie will also be there reading her book Stanley the Amazing Knitting Cat.

 

THE LOWDOWN – We drove from Aberdeen to Glasgow, overnighting at the new Travelodge on Queen Street, and drove the half hour to East Kilbride to reach the museum.  If you don’t have a car click here to find out how to visit.  The museum is open daily 1000-1700 with the exceptions of 25 and 26 December and 1 January.  Ticket prices are Adult £7, Concessions £6, Child £4 (under 5 free) and Family £19 (2 adults and 2 children).  National Museums Scotland Members, National Trust Scotland Members and National Art Pass holders are free.

Tots2Travel received complimentary passes to the museum.  We will always remember the piglets.

If you like what you read then don’t miss a post, enter your email address in the ‘Follow’ box then click ‘Follow’ or join the conversation on Facebook. For any queries or opportunities please email tots2travel@hotmail.com.  All images copyright to Tots2Travel.

 

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30 Comments

  1. Reply

    fifi + hop

    June 8, 2016

    Great pics and love that you started a farming series! Looking forward to reading more..:)

    • Reply

      tots2travel

      June 8, 2016

      Great excuse to get out into the countryside.

  2. Reply

    Katie Wight

    June 8, 2016

    Really enjoying this series, thanks Tots 2 Travel

    • Reply

      tots2travel

      June 8, 2016

      Cool. In this weather it’s an even better experience.

  3. Reply

    Keely

    June 8, 2016

    Looks like your family had a great day out! Lovely photos 🙂

    • Reply

      tots2travel

      June 12, 2016

      Was a good all rounder destination.

  4. Reply

    Little Steps/Dean B (@LittleStepsTwit)

    June 8, 2016

    That looks like an interesting place to visit, especially since we do like farms 🙂

    • Reply

      tots2travel

      June 12, 2016

      We learnt a fair amount about the animals as the guides were informative.

  5. Reply

    Ana De Jesus

    June 8, 2016

    I think I would have liked the Gardens Detectives room as well because its well thought out and fun as well as educational.

    • Reply

      tots2travel

      June 12, 2016

      It was a refresher on my biology standard grade 🙂

  6. Reply

    fashionandstylepolice

    June 9, 2016

    Lovely pictures you got here. I love the countryside.

    • Reply

      tots2travel

      June 12, 2016

      Thank you.

  7. Reply

    Beautyqueen UK (Beautyqueenuk)

    June 9, 2016

    This is so lovely and I would have tried to steal a piglet, how cute x

    • Reply

      tots2travel

      June 12, 2016

      What a great image!

  8. Reply

    Lindsay At Newcastle Family Life

    June 9, 2016

    That looks like a really interesting day out. The admission prices are not to expensive either x

    • Reply

      tots2travel

      June 12, 2016

      I thought it was good value as the museum itself could charge that but you add in the tractor/trailer AND the farm and it’s a good day out.

  9. Reply

    Kara Guppy

    June 9, 2016

    This looks really interesting, will have to check it out when we come up to Scotland

    • Reply

      tots2travel

      June 12, 2016

      It was really good value overall.

    • Reply

      tots2travel

      June 12, 2016

      There are several ‘National Museums’ – the National Museum of Scotland and the National Museum of Flight are also worth a visit.

  10. Reply

    Traveling Rockhopper

    June 9, 2016

    That’s an interesting museum!

    • Reply

      tots2travel

      June 12, 2016

      A lot of solid history here too.

  11. Reply

    dearmummyblog

    June 10, 2016

    What a facinating place! Love all the children’s interactive activities, it’s a great way to help them understand 🙂

    • Reply

      tots2travel

      June 12, 2016

      The Garden Detectives room really worked well.

  12. Reply

    Fuss Free Helen

    June 12, 2016

    That looks a lovely and fun but also educational day out. It do think it is so important for children to learn where their food comes from.

    • Reply

      tots2travel

      June 12, 2016

      There was also a lot of rich history, a farrier section as well as the farm itself so a lot to take in for adults too.

  13. Reply

    Kerry Norris

    June 12, 2016

    Always great to get out and enjoy the countryside. My daughters love a farm x

    • Reply

      tots2travel

      June 14, 2016

      I love living in a city but I love escaping too.

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