With Birthday celebrations underway for the smallest mudling, she was given the choice of where to head for a family outing. She eventually settled on visiting the Miniature Railway and Fairy Walk at Audley end.
The miniature railway is found over the road to Audley End Hose and Gardens – a rather grand, country house. (Much like the one I might live in when I’m a real grown up.) 😉 Near Saffron Walden in Essex.
The Miniature Railway and Enchanted Fairy and Elf Walk is set in woodland close to the estate with plenty of space for little people to run around and explore.
Before we set off I was given a strict warning by my now six year old that it was her birthday day out and there would be absolutely no caching whatsoever.
That’s me told.
Looks like I need to get sneaky… 😉
There are many teddy bears that live in the woods in Audley end and children are given a pencil and woodland I spy sheet full of things to spot.
I have slight issues with soft toys that live outside. But six year old divas love them and excitedly demanded I take photos of them all. Every. Single. One. Woo!
Turns out it’s impossible in our family to enter a tunnel without pulling a silly face.
As the train made its return trip I couldn’t help but sneak a glance at my phone, under the pretence of looking at photos I was soon on the geocaching app and stunned to see I was just 20m away from the nearest cache. Blimey! That’s close enough I can almost smell it. (You know that slightly musty smell 😉)
With train ride excitement over we decided to beat the lunchtime rush and grab an early lunch. With my bacon roll (mmmm) ordered it was the perfect opportunity to sneak away. My app now putting me 60m away this was a achievable dash, let’s just hope I find it.
Luckily it was a fairly obvious hide by a rather lovely bridge and I soon had the log signed. Making my way back in I was accosted by the car parking attendant. ‘Are you the lady attempting to park by the fence?’ ‘Me? No, I’m the one doing strange things at the sign post. 😉
I arrived back with the team none the wiser. A find achieved for the day, and my bacon roll was ready.
Sometimes it seems, things do actually go my way!
With lunch demolished it was on to the fairy walk in the enchanted woods.
Incredibly exciting when you are six and love pink, and glitter and fluffy things.
Also turns out to be surprisingly acceptable if you are nine or seven and prefer Star Wars, minecraft and mud. But we won’t tell anybody that… 😉
The walk begins by transforming the pencil you were given for the train ride into a magical, wishing wand with a liberal sprinkling of glitter and enough feathers to tickle anyone’s fancy.
The nine year old drew the line here. Glitterise my pencil? You must be joking!
And admiring the sleeping baby fairies. I still can’t decide if this is rather sweet or the creepiest thing I have ever seen in my life.
At one point it did get all a bit overwhelming for Mr Muddy. He took himself off to the den building area to build a shelter, burn things and possibly even wrestle wild boar. Grr
There’s even a magical mirror, great fun pulling funny faces. Until your daft photo bombing mother jumps in.
There’s also an onsite playground for the children to run off excess fairy excitement and plenty of provision for picnics, and of course the signal box cafe for food and drink. Food’s ok, coffee was dire.
A great little place to visit if you have fairy loving small people, I’d hoped to pick up a new tooth fairy whilst we were there. The one allocated to our house is rubbish! 😉