Any links in this post to a merchant may contain an affiliate link, which means that if you click on that link and then buy something, I may earn a commission from it. However, all opinions in this link are 100% mine and 100% honest. If I didn't believe in a particular product, I wouldn't recommend it to you.
Day trips with kids are wonderful because they provide an almost instant gratification that appeals to kids. One of my favorite day trips to take with kids in the fall is a trip to the pumpkin patch. It is such a fun way to celebrate the cooler weather and the colorful harvest of the season. And kids love playing among the pumpkins. Here are some tips to help you have the best day at the pumpkin patch.
Which pumpkin patch to go to?
If you live in the United States, you probably have a pumpkin patch close to your home. Some of them are large with lots of activities, while others are small and focus only on pumpkins.
The best pumpkin patches are out in the middle of nowhere. The further out in the country you have to drive, the better the patch typically is. This is because these places have more space to spread out. And they are usually not as crowded.
Plus, pumpkin patches that are out on a farm means that you will be getting pumpkins right at the source. You can’t get much fresher than that! I think you will find that it will be worth the extra drive.
To find a pumpkin patch near you, see this list of pumpkin patches and more.
Tip: For the best pumpkins and activities, go to a pumpkin patch out in the country.
Now, you don’t have to do a ton of planning for a day with the pumpkins, but you should prepare a little bit.
Once you decide which patch to visit, look at their website or Facebook page to get directions, hours of operation, admission prices, and a list of activities. Also check to see whether it is a cash only or a cashless operation. That’s really all you need to know before you go.
Tip: Do a basic internet search on the pumpkin patch to find general information such as hours of operation and admission prices.
Remember that you are going to the country to spend the day on a farm. You will be walking through dirt and grass and are likely to encounter critters ranging from ants to cows.
So, you need to dress yourself and your children appropriately! This is not the time to wear heels and a cute dress. Put on some jeans and sensible shoes.
Dress your kids in clothes that they can get dirty because, honestly, at some point during the day, they will probably end up in the dirt. That’s part of the fun of the day. So, just prepare for it.
Tip: Wear clothes that you don’t mind getting dirty. You’re going to a farm, not a fashion show.
Plan to arrive early and give yourself plenty of time to explore.
Many times, when we head to the pumpkin patch, I’m not sure how long we will be there. I always set aside the whole day for it, though. We usually end up staying for at least two or three hours.
A pumpkin patch is the type of place where you don’t want to feel rushed. So, give yourself plenty of time. You will have a much more relaxing time, and your kids will have more fun, if you are not watching the clock while you are there.
Tip: Arrive early and plan to spend the whole day, so you can enjoy all there is do without feeling rushed.
Every pumpkin patch operates a little differently. Some charge an admission price. Most activities are included in this price. Sometimes, a few of the activities will require a ticket that can be purchased for an additional charge. And food and pumpkins are usually available for sale at an additional cost.
Some places, on the other hand, either charge individually for each activity or include all activities in the admission price. Check on this prior to your arrival so you will be prepared.
Also, some places only take cash, while others are cashless. And still others accept cash or cards. So, check this out in advance so you will have the appropriate method of payment.
Generally speaking, pumpkin patches are pretty reasonable when it comes to the price for an entire day’s worth of fun.
Tip: Look at the pricing structure before arrival if possible. Also, check on whether it is a cash only operation.
Most pumpkin patches have a whole list of activities to enjoy. They usually have a special play area for younger children, which is great if you have little ones.
Activities that are common at pumpkin patches include pedal cars, bounce/jump areas, hay rides, corn cannons, pumpkin painting, kiddie trains, and corn mazes. Some also have farm animals that you can pet, zip lines, archery, and other things.
A lot of times, you can also find yard games, such as corn hole, checkers, and horseshoes.
I love that they usually also have photo backdrops set up so you can get some great fall pictures.
Pumpkin patches usually have a wide variety of activities. These activities are usually geared to people of all ages, which is great for families. You can take multiple generations and everyone will enjoy themselves.
Take your time and enjoy as many activities as you can. And take plenty of pictures to remember the day!
Tip: Look for a pumpkin patch with a variety of activities that can be enjoyed by everyone in your family.
Of course, one of the main reasons why you go to a pumpkin patch in the first place is to get pumpkins to decorate your house.
We always have a large number of pumpkins around our house every year. My son loves pumpkins, but he always picks out the most unusual ones he can find. For us, the best pumpkin patches are those that feature a large variety of pumpkins and gourds.
All pumpkin patches have pumpkins for sale. Most have them in a central area so you can pick out your favorites to take home. Others have the pumpkins scattered throughout the area.
We usually walk away with a wheel barrow full of pumpkins and gourds.
Tip: When picking out pumpkins to take home, ask an employee which ones are for sale. If you find one on display that you like, they may sell it to you even if it is being used for decoration.
The pumpkin patch is a great place to spend some quality time with your family. They usually offer tons of activities and the best selection of pumpkins. Go to a pumpkin patch out in the country on an actual farm. They will have the freshest pumpkins and more activities than those located in the middle of the city.
Spending the day at the pumpkin patch is just good, old-fashion fun. Plan a day trip to one this fall to create some wonderful family memories that you will cherish for years to come.
For other ideas on how to enjoy the fall with your family, see my favorite fall activities for families. For more day trip ideas, see my list of fun day trips you can take this weekend. And check out my complete guide to happy travel with kids.