BEST FAMILY DAY OUT
Mary Arden's Farm
Mary Arden's Farm is one of 5 places managed by the Shakespeare Birthplace Trust. Three miles out of Stratford, it combines the cottage in which Shakespeare's mother was brought up with a slightly larger 16th century farmhouse next door. The site is run as an organic working farm on lines that would have been familiar to Tudor contemporaries. The emphasis is on authenticity and visitors can join in with everyday activities looking after ponies, pigs and goats, herding geese and working in the kitchen, as though they have just stepped into a Tudor farm. There are also immersive falconry displays and archery practice. Each day, the regular seasonal routines of the farm unfold before visitors and the farmhouse becomes the setting for a Tudor meal cooked over the fire by volunteers with produce gathered from the garden and farm. The café serves the same food as is served in the farmhouse, as well as more familiar 21st century fare. Exhibitions, guided tours and house trails give visitors of all ages a deeper understanding of everyday country life when Shakespeare was a boy.