World of Beatrix Potter With a Five Year Old

On Sunday Mr P had a golf match in Windermere.  If you’re a golfer and fancy joining a friendly group, take at look at Phill’s.

Anyway since he was driving to the Lakes it seemed silly to miss the opportunity to hitch a ride with him and take Dottie on an adventure.
I remember visiting the World of Beatrix Potter as a child.  It had been one of favourite days out.  I visited again with Beth and my sister in law when I was pregnant with Dottie but she’s never seen this magical place whilst this side of the womb!

We got there early.  I think we were only the second customers of the day and I’d recommend you get there early too.  There isn’t alot of room in the attraction and once you get a few people in, it does lose some of the ooh, ahh factor as you feel pressured to move quickly through all the different sections.
The World of Beatrix Potter is essentially a life size model village, straight from the imagination of the lady herself.  If you pay an extra couple of quid you get a special programme with a beautifully illustrated map of the village.
You move from scene to scene learning interesting facts about wildlife and immersing yourself in Beatrix Potter’s magical stories.  There’s a small ode to Mr McGreggor’s garden, complete with Peter’s little blue jacket which made Dottie gasp with delight.  Happily when we visited there was a bowl of raddish seeds which we were invited to take home and grow for ourselves the very same radishes that Peter loves to pinch from Mr McGreggor.

The interactive section of the experience does feel a little out of place and ‘high tec’ amongst the animatronics and murals, but it went down very well with Dottie who loved completing jigsaws and painting by numbers.
You can exit through the gift shop or the cafe or like us, the cafe and then the gift shop.

I think they’ve missed a trick with the cafe and shop.  I’d have loved for them to be dark and quaint like the imagined homes of Mrs Tiggy Winkle and Mr Todd or the intriguing Ginger and Pickles shop.  But instead they are really artificially bright rooms that are just a bit ordinary looking.  They redeem themselves with helpful staff and fantastic offerings of course!
Dottie pranced into the cafe and requested carrot cake and chamomile tea, because that’s what Peter Rabbit eats.  And while chamomile tea isn’t something they had advertised, the sweet lady who served us managed to find some for her.
The shop is quite good.  There’s a decent variety of goods and while I didn’t find anything for less than £2 (and there was a hell of alot for a hell of a lot more), there were quite a few bits and bobs for that price.  So treating the little ones doesn’t need to be too painful for your wallet.

Dottie was absolutely delighted with this outting.  She’s 5 and I think that might be the perfect age as she’s old enough to know the stories and characters well, but young enough to still believe in all the magic that comes with them.  That said the BBC version of Peter Rabbit did spark a few frustrated moments.  I mean where is Lily?  And why is Cottontail as big as her two sisters?  I used the ‘shrug shoulders and distract with something pretty’ method of parenting at this point, because I didn’t have it one to explain how classic ideas are commercialised for modern markets!

The cost of entrance is £8.20 for adults, £4.20 for children (under 16) and children under 3 are free.  I reccomend buying the map for the extra £2 as it’s just adorable.
You’re not able to bring prams into the attraction but there is a safe and dry place to store them.  If you have a very small child, you might want to consider a baby carrier.
Apart from Mr McGreggor’s garden which is only wee, everything is indoors so it’s a great rainy day activity.
The attraction only takes about 45 minutes to an hour and it’s very easy to fall in to the trap of rushing.  Don’t! Make the most of it and read all the signs, press all the buttons and be sure you look up, down and behind you or you’re sure to miss something special.

Once you’ve finished, you might like to take a short walk to the lake and hop on an island cruise!

The trip we took was about 50 minutes long and cost around £10 for adults and around £5 for children over the age of 5. There weren’t any stops but we were happy with that as we were a bit tired.

Add a picnic to Beatrix Potter and an Island Cruise and you’ve got a pretty awesome day out!

Have you ever visited Windermere?

Love Rachel ❤

*not a collaboration – tickets all purchased by me.

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