Families at Heligan
The Lost Gardens provide families with possibly the best natural playground ever, making them one of the top family days out in Cornwall! There’s a network of magical gardens, woodland walks and farmland brimming with interest and intrigue; and with over 200 acres – enough room to tire the most energetic little legs!
Throughout the year, we offer seasonal trails designed to inspire and captivate your children as you explore.
In addition, we host a range of exciting family orientated events at key times of the year, from our popular Heligan Wild Week in May to our nostalgic summer events programme, through to Halloween and Christmas, there’s always seasonal, nature-loving fun for the whole family.
To help you plan your visit, here’s a list of Heligan locations and activities that we know children love.
New for 2017 – The Barn
‘The Barn’ was opened to the public on Monday 3rd April and is designed as an agricultural space to enable visitors to learn more about life and the important work that is carried out, throughout the Wider Estate. This wonderful space has already proved very popular with our visitors and some lucky enough to see the live birth of some of our Devon and Cornwall sheep this Spring.
Acres of raised boardwalks, giant exotic plants, pools, wildlife and one of the longest Burmese Rope Bridge in Britain! Perfect for any budding Indiana Jones or Dora the Explorer. This sub-tropical garden is not only brimming with exotic plants from around the world, it’s also home to some of the earliest dinosaur food – Tree Ferns. Although the dinosaurs have long since gone, the plants that they used to eat are still with us today! Can you spot them?
East Lawn Play Space and Rope Swing
You’ll find our very popular Play Space and Rope Swing on East Lawn. Perfect for little ones and big kids alike.
The heart of our interactive Wildlife Project. Here, you can view live images of our nesting barn owls and watch the abundant bird life directly in front of the Hide. Learn about different native birds, bees and an array of British wildlife and habitats.
The Insect Hotel
Located on the Georgian Ride, deep in our ancient woodlands, this is the Ritz of Insect Hotels, providing a wide range of nesting space for a host of insect and invertebrate life. What creatures will you discover?
The Coin Log
Close by the Insect Hotel, this popular log has become home to an ever increasing collection of coins; all creatively fixed to the Coin Log. Using the mallet provided, simply tap your coin into the log to leave your mark.
Heligan Farm Animals
Throughout the Estate, you will discover a friendly collection of heritage and rare livestock in the form of our ‘Tamworth’ and ‘Lop’ Pigs, ‘Devon and Cornwall Longwool’, ‘Kerry Hill’, ‘Jacob’ and ‘Hebridean’ sheep and ‘Dexter’, ‘White Park’ and ‘White Park’ Cows, along with a variety of rare poultry. All the Heligan animals have their own appeal but our adorable Tamworth piglets usually steal the show! Check with staff on arrival for their current location.
Our resident scarecrow stands guard over the abundance of crops in the Vegetable Garden and is always pleased when visitors stop to pose for a photo with him.
100 years ago, the Heligan Estate was home to some exotic animals, including emus. In 2014, in line with our WW1 commemoration and continued restoration, we returned emus to the Heligan Estate. Stop at their enclosure next to the Steward’s House and say hello to Queenie and Edmund.