Ladybirds at Chirk Castle

chirk castle north wales

We visited the very beautiful Chirk Castle, which is a National Trust property in North Wales. We arrived at opening time (10am) though we were not the first in the car park, by any means! First things first, we had to play for a while in the stick houses, and the surrounding area. These dens are next to the car park, just to the right of the entrance cottage.

chirk castle stick den

After a good while playing, balancing, hiding and generally having fun, we headed through the visitor centre, past the shop, and out into the grounds. Almost. James spotted some tractors and at the same time I saw there was a track to drive them on, so I picked one up and carried it up the hill. He played there, very happily, with a few other preschoolers for a long time, until I called him over for our picnic.

tractor fun chirk castle

The last time we were at Chirk Castle, I was pregnant with Noah. Now he’s a crawling, eating, massive baby! How time flies!

baby eating picnic chirk castle

There’s also a playground next to the food hatch, which is conveniently near to the tractor track, so you can sit at the picnic tables, drink a coffee, and watch your little ones all while relaxing. Ideal. More places need to think of this!

We played in there for a good while until we set out for the castle. To get to the castle from the visitor centre area, you have to go along a gravelled path, up a steep hill, and then run along next to the castle before you come to the enormous entrance door. This took quite a time, because James decided he was an excavator, and lay on the ground digging the gravel with his hands. Then, he ran backwards up the hill…

Anyway, we got there eventually!

run up hill next to chirk castle

Inside the entrance there is a large courtyard, and there’s another cafe, if you need a cuppa after puffing up that hill (actually, a bus will shuttle you up the hill at fairly regular intervals, but any excuse for a coffee, eh?)

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But, here, we came across the real stars of the day. Two ladybirds! One was a little bit wing damaged, as you can see, but both crawled on James’ hands, much to his delight.
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I managed to capture the first time a ladybird climbed on to his finger on video.

After this magical encounter with the wildlife, James dotted in and out of the rooms downstairs, telling anyone who would listen that he’d found some ladybirds, and they’d crawled on his hands. It’s so cute to hear him excited about things, but even more great when adults interact with his enthusiasm.
catching ladybirds chirk castle

Inside the castle tower we played at building castles for a while, and also did some drawing. There is a rail full of brilliant dress-up clothes. I think the next time we visit, James might fit some of them a little better. He was very keen to wear a cape, but they were all massive and put him off.

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Then, after a very full day, we headed home. We left Chirk Castle at 4pm, so we really had been there all day, which you can’t fault really – there’s so many different things to do. Well done, National Trust!

Monkey and Mouse

Country Kids from Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays Cornwall

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  1. July 25, 2015 / 11:00 am

    Lovely photos! And that video is super cute! Sounds like you had a lovely day! 🙂

  2. July 25, 2015 / 12:59 pm

    Sounds like a lovely day out. I’ll need to visit Chirk Castle seeing as I live in North Wales. I find it weird visiting places with my little boy that I also went to whilst pregnant with him, make you realise how fast time flies! The dens look like so much fun, and it’s great they have tractors to ride on. Looks like you got some good weather too #CountryKids

    • July 25, 2015 / 1:05 pm

      It’s a great day out, hope you manage to go Catriona. We love the National Slate Museum in North Wales too (I should write about it!), have you visited there?

  3. July 25, 2015 / 1:43 pm

    Lovely – there’s always so much to do at National Trust properties but I love the way even a few ladybirds are fascinating for kids. #countrykids

  4. July 26, 2015 / 1:50 am

    I love the ladybird encounter, looks like it is not just us on the minibeast trail this week. I think the National Trust have really got their act together where families are concerned, the play areas and dressing up boxes are perfect and the ride on tractors here something I’ve not seen before. Lovely looking castle and with all the activities on offer you get to see it without bored children in tow! Thank you for sharing with me on Country Kids.

  5. August 1, 2015 / 10:00 pm

    I looove that he was so excited by the ladybirds, and great that others interacted with him when he told them all about it. I hate it when adults don’t talk to kids that are telling them something.

    The castle looks beautiful, a lovely explore and so many things for kids to do. I love it when they think about the littler visitors too.

    Great thinking on their part about the picnic benches next to the play area, that always makes life easier for adults visiting with children, you know that they’re going to want to play and you can relax whilst watching them.

    Thank you very much for linking up to #whatevertheweather 🙂 x

  6. chloelifeunexpected
    August 3, 2015 / 9:43 pm

    My daughter would have loved the little stick houses and the tractors. I don’t think we would have got much further than the ride ons haha.
    It sounds like there is so much to do outdoors. A lot of places need to take a leaf out of Chirk Castle’s book. What an adorable little video of your little one getting excited over the ladybird. 😀 He was so happy to pick him up! You’ve taken some lovely photos. This sounds like a really great place to visit. The fact that you were there all day with two little ones shows just how great it is! Thank you so much for linking up to #whatevertheweather x

    • August 3, 2015 / 9:51 pm

      It was something of a challenge to convince him to go and see the castle after the fun of the tractors!
      Thanks for popping by!

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