Days Out – Stoneywish Nature Reserve, West Sussex

Last week S decided to make the weekend longer by taking a day off on the Friday. I love it when she does this as it means more family time. Two days, in my eyes, is just not long enough.

With the glorious weather we’d had that week, we decided to raid for free/cheap activities in our local area. With this, we found a place in Hassocks called Stoneywish. It advertised nature trails, farm animals, play parks, picnic areas, and a camp site. Perfect.

The drive there was very scenic, making the day enjoyable already, and as soon as we arrived I lost phone signal – the tell-tale sign that I’m literally in the middle of no where.

Once we paid £5 entry (£4 for under 3’s if you’re interested), we went straight through into the farming area. As it was spring, there were babies everywhere; piglets, lambs, chicks, etc. It was all very sweet.

We then followed the trails around the reserve coming across several ponds and wooded areas.


I’d say the ground is somewhat buggy/pram friendly if you have a relatively decent one but it can get a bit dicey around the sheep poo. I would have carried T if it wasn’t so hot – I’m still gauging when to use the wrap.

Whilst on the trails we came across several play areas. Although I saw your typical swing, a lot of the equipment had been made out of recycled items. For example, a slide had been made out of an old Land Rover – the slide coming out of the back.

There were also lots of “activity” huts for little ones (or big ones) to learn a bit about nature.  IMG_7847

Once we’d completed our walk we then went for our picnic. Because of the free roaming animals around the trail, picnics were limited to around the gardens of the function room which was no bother as it was near the car park (meaning we didn’t have to carry the picnic stuff with us) and the toilets! The garden is lovely and we found a nice sun spot to set up camp.


We were there almost the whole day and certainly made the most out of it. Of course T had no clue where we were but it was nice for us to get out and scope out future places to go.

Stoneywish is definitely suitable for young children what with the farm animals and small walks, any older and it may not be enough to keep them entertained. Apart from a picnic plan, I also feel it’s suitable for dull days as long as you have wellies on!

The only downside to Stoneywish was the price, I think. Although there’s the upkeep of animals that need to be paid for; which I do understand, I thought £5 was still a bit steep. There were three adults that day which meant we paid £15 to get in! Ouch!

Nevertheless, it was still a nice day and we will definitely be returning once T is a little older to appreciate the animals and again once when he can toddle/walk around.


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