The National Forest Adventure Farm‘s Maize Maze is themed on the moon landing for 2019. It’s a fun and unique tribute to the first moon landing that is, quite simply, a-maizing!
Disclaimer: Greg and his son received complimentary entry to National Forest Adventure Farm for the purpose of this review. All words and opinions are his own.
My space-nut son and I (Freddie, aged 8) found ourselves eagerly heading off to the National Forest Adventure Farm in the quaint village of Tatenhill (on the outskirts of Burton-on-Trent, Staffordshire) to check it all out.
On until 2nd September 2019, this family-friendly attraction is marking the 50th anniversary of the historic Moon Landing, which took place on 20th July 1969, with a maze crafted entirely from maize plants and based on an image of astronaut Neil Armstrong taking those first steps and the lunar mission’s Saturn V rocket.
The maize maze offers three miles of paths, bridges and viewing towers through the 10-acre field (it takes a good two hours) and by the end of the summer, the crop will have grown to a towering 2.4m (8ft)! Freddie and I joined the families looking to successfully navigate the maze to find and solve space-themed puzzles to help a stranded Lunar Crew fix their spacecraft in order to safely return to Earth.
You do get a basic map to follow, and the look-out points are vital in helping to get an overview and spot the 11 code points that are themed around space disciplines like Engineering, Mechanics, Electrical, Astronomy and Navigation, but it isn’t exactly easy – so be prepared for a few wrong turns. Thank heavens for the Little A’le’ Inn Café half way round, where we were able to get a cooling drink and ice cream, plus a few welcome hints and tips from the Maze Commander.
Refreshed and refocused, we plunged into the greenery again and managed to locate the remaining code points to complete all the challenges and work out the final number. On locating the Lunar Landing Module and typing in the code on the launch pad, we successfully started the engine to complete our important space mission – hurrah!
The annual summer maize maze at the farm is a popular Midlands tourist attraction attracting over 45,000 visitors each year, but this one is certainly the most ambitious.
Families can also find out what it is like to be an astronaut and catch a rare view of earth in a 360 degree virtual reality video of a journey into space. You can watch the flight alongside the Space Rangers: Alien Rescue, which is an interactive experience that sees children train to become a Space Ranger and help save aliens.
It might be a tad dark and scary for little toddlers and at eight years old (going on 10) it was bordering on a bit too far-fetched for Freddie, but the Space Commander is entertaining as he leads you round lots of weirdly lit and kitted out rooms, plus kids get to dress up en route and take charge of some alien eggs that need incubating, etc.
Suitably spaced out, we then took advantage of the farm’s other mainstay attractions before we left – and if you love animals (some of which you can feed) it’s another rare treat. Apart from rabbits, guinea pigs, goats, exotic birds and pigs, there are Shetland ponies, donkeys, Alpacas and a Sheep Race you can bet on.
There are also Quad Barrel and Trailer & Tractor rides, as well as a pedal go-kart grand prix, farmyard crazy golf, a Music Maze, the Jurassic Canyon Sand Play & Fossil Dig, a JCB Big Dig Zone and (one we missed) the cool Water Splash Out zone. If that’s not enough, there’s a decent soft indoor play for little ones area adjacent to Scarecrow Joe’s Restaurant and the Courtyard Café.
Looks like we’ll have to go back again pretty soon…
Tickets cost £11.24 online (£12.49 on the door) and include entrance to the maize maze and Space Rangers: Alien Rescue activities. Plus everything else that there is to do at this farm park. Under 2s are free. For a full review of the National Adventure farm please see – National Forest Adventure Farm | Burton on Trent | Review Things To Do.
Address: National Forest Adventure Farm, Postern Road, Tatenhill, Burton on Trent. DE13 9SJ. Tel: 01283 533933. Email: [email protected]
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