I first heard about Audley End’s Miniature Railway and Enchanted Fairy walk through one of my local Facebook groups, someone mentioned it and said it was a great place for a day out so we decided to pay it a visit.  It is situated about one mile of Saffron Walden, so perfect if you are round the Essex area.

First of all I have to clarify that the Miniature Railway and Enchanted Fairy walk is not part of Audley House & Gardens. We nearly made the mistake to pay to get into the Gardens but luckily we double checked at the entrance and we were told it the correct place was directly opposite.

The main car park was full so we were directed to the overflow car park, which was only a couple of minutes  walk from the entrance and was just £1.

At the ticket office we were given the choice to buy separate tickets for the Steam Railway and Fairy Walk or a combined ticket that allowed us to visit both. We decided to go for the combined ticket, that was £7 per person (under 2’s are free). With our tickets we were given pencils and 2 little booklets, the booklets had pictures of fairies and other animals for the kids to spot and tick during the visit.

Our first stop was lunch in the Signal Box Café which was at the entrance, a nice café with outdoor and indoor seating, not too many tables but we still didn’t have an issue finding one. The café had a selection of sandwiches and hot food. We had a burger and the kids decided to go for a lunch box with sandwich, a drink and a couple of snacks.



After our lunch we decided to head for the Enchanted Fairy and Elf Walk, at the entrance we were welcomed by a couple of fairies that offered to transform the kids pencils into magic wands. The kids were a bit shy to start with but they really enjoyed choosing feathers, glitter and other bits that converted their pencils into fairy wands





Audley End Miniature Railway and Enchanted Fairy and Elf Walk

We then headed into the walk. Initially  the kids were very keen to find all the fairies in their little booklet but after a while they just decided to run around.

It was a lovely walk and there were little fairy houses in the trees or on the floor, it really felt like we were in an enchanted forest! It was really magical.

Audley End Miniature Railway and Enchanted Fairy and Elf Walk



Audley End Miniature Railway and Enchanted Fairy and Elf Walk

It was a busy day but we could still walk around taking pictures and seeing everything without feeling that the place was too crowded.





Audley End Miniature Railway and Enchanted Fairy and Elf Walk

We spent about 45 minutes in the Fairy and Elf Walk, but really we could have been there much longer.

Our next stop was the Miniature Railway. We did not have to wait too long to get on a train, they run frequently, and  the journey lasts 15 minutes. There are many things to see from the train, teddy bears that live in the woods and lot’s of woodland wildlife.

It was a lovely train ride and there were lot’s of squeals of excitement whenever we spotted anything.



Before we ended our visit we headed for the picnic area and playground, it was a really sunny day and there were quite a few people there with picnics. I guess a picnic is a great alternative if you don’t want to spend money in the café or if you just want to sit around having a coffee while the children play.

We had a great day out and I really recommend it. I think we will be back before the end of the summer.

Both the Fairy  and the Miniature Railway are open every weekend until the 18th October  so I recommend you visit it if you are in the area.


Audley End Miniature Railway and Enchanted Fairy and Elf Walk

When we asked the boys what their favourite bit of the day was they said it was the fairy walk. … Who said boys are just interested in trains?

Have you been to the Audley End Miniature Railway and Enchanted Fairy Walk? Did you like it?



Bribing Children


As a parent I feel like I spend quite a lot of my time bribing my children just to get them to behave. I know it’s bad and I shouldn’t do it but surely I am not the only one?

These are some of the things I find myself saying in a regular basis

  • If you do a wee in the potty I will give you a smartie
  • If you do a poo in the potty I will give you 2 smarties
  • If you don’t have any accidents all day I will give you a Kinder egg
  • Ok, yes if your brother does a wee, poo or has no accidents you can also have smartie or a kinder egg (my eldest is an excellent negotiator)
  • If you are good all day you can have a chocolate coin
  • If you pose nicely for mummy’s pictures you can have a chocolate muffin
  • If you are good on the plane we will go to McDonald’s
  • If you are not good I will cancel your birthday party
  • If you are not good I will call Father Christmas and tell him not to bring you any presents (I use this September to December)

I also used to give my eldest something from a treat box just before bed according to how good he had been during the day. Luckily (or unluckily for him) he is not the best behaved child so he didn’t get a treat very often. I have stopped that now as I want him to realise he has to be good regardless.

Do you bribe your children on a regular basis? Please tell me I am not the only one!

The List


We usually go to Waddesdon Manor a couple of times a year as my in laws live about one hour away so it’s a bit of a meeting point for all of us.


Waddesdon Manor  is an impressive French style Chateau house that  has massive grounds but my children’s favourite is the woodland’s playground.

The playground is fantastic, it has plenty of equipment for young children , and  a mesh swing, contour slide  and  zip wire for the older ones. There is plenty of space for them to run around, climb up and down the slope and enjoy the surroundings.


We went on Father’s day but  we did not know the  Feast Festival was taking place on the grounds, so it was extremely busy, there must have been hundreds of people there.

The Feast Festival is inspired in a historical event where the Baron of Rothschild, the original owner of the house, invited  locals of Waddesdon and other  villages close by to come in and enjoy a picnic on the grounds.

There were food and drink stalls with space to sit down in lovely decorated tables or plenty of space for people to have picnics.flores

It was a lovely day and the kids loved it. We were one of the last ones to leave so I managed to get some pictures when it had all quieted down.


If you are not too far from the area I definitely recommend Waddesdon for a day out with children. It’s not only an ideal place for adults to spend the day, with a couple of lovely places to eat, but they also run events throughout the year.





If you are not too far from the area I definitely recommend a day out in Waddesdon?

Have you been to Waddesdon? Did you go to the Feast Festival? What did you think?