Visiting Rougham Pumpkin Patch, Suffolk

It’s October and Autumn feels in full swing already. Today we ventured to Rougham Estates Pumpkin Patch in Suffolk to get our Halloween pumpkins (and gourds…just can’t resist the little ones). It was great to venture out as a family and spent time outside exploring. I thought I’d share our thoughts on our day out. As my children both have additional needs (autism and communication difficulties) I will also include some parts that worked for us.

Getting there

The patch is easy to find as it’s just off the A14 Rougham exit. There’s plenty of signs to follow which then leads you to the field where you park. There’s staff there to direct you on where to park. The car park is only a short walk from the patch so it’s easy to pop back and drop the pumpkins off then go back to explore.

Pumpkin Patch

Firstly you’ll need to choose your wheelbarrow. Then you head into the patch. One of the benefits for me was that the patch was arranged in rows and in between the rows was grassy pathways (it’s a field so still bumpy but not excessive). This may it easier to navigate and you could push buggy’s and mobility aids would be able to travel along them. You can then pick you pumpkin from there or walk into the patch to pick (just beware of the vines). There’s plenty of different types of pumpkins and gourds to choose and varying sizes. You can see the different stages of them growing so it’s also great opportunity to talk to the children about the lifecycle of the pumpkins.

There’s lots of amazing photo opportunities as you wonder around such as autumnal display, haybales and fun spooky pumpkin scarecrows. The boys loved finding the next places to explore. We took A LOT of photos.

Once you’ve chosen your pumpkins you then head to the tent to pay. Just outside is a wash station where you can give the pumpkins a quick wash if you choose. The price is based on size and there is a guide so you have an idea before you get in there. I think they are reasonable given they are ‘homegrown’ and it’s supporting a local business. We paid £5 for a white pumpkin, orange pumpkin and two gourds…all chosen by the children.

Activities

As well as the pumpkin patch there are several fun activities. There are ride on tractor (some by peddles, others by pushing), haybales to climb, sandpits with toys already available (floor level with low level frame if you want to get in, but can play from outside) and games such as Corn Hole and Welly Wanging (lots of space so can access with mobility aids). All of which are free! There’s face painting available at additional cost but be prepared to queue as this was very popular. As it’s an open field and plenty of space it’s not too overwhelming for children with sensory or social difficulties. Neither of my children needed ear defenders (the only place with music playing was the food tent).

There is a quiz you can do in the pumpkin patch were you find letters and pictures. We didn’t do it this time as the children just wanted to get straight in there but we did enjoy finding them anyway as we walked around.

Food and Drink

There is the option of hot food (toasties and soup) and cakes, as well as hot and cold drinks. Prices are what you expect from event based foods and there were queues for it all but not unreasonable. There are benches to sit on to eat but also lots of space to sit down with a picnic blanket. The only shelter is the food hall which got filled up quickly, so just be aware if weather is less favourable. We chose to sit on the haybales so our youngest could play in the sand whilst we enjoyed drinks and a doughnut (which was tasty).

Toilets

There are standard portaloo toilets but no Changing Places (or mobile version) facilities and there are no other toileting facilities locally that I’m aware of so this is something to bare in mind if accessibility is a consideration for you.

Overall we all had an amazing time. We were there about three hours and never felt bored or left wondering what to do. It was great to see the pumpkins growing and the children picking their own. They were on the go the entire time, with lots of smiles. Now to decide what we’re going to make with our pumpkins.

If your children aren’t fans of messy textures here is a post I wrote a few years ago with ‘mess free’ pumpkin decorating ideas.

I hope you have a lovely Autumn and a lovely Halloween if you celebrate this. I’d love to know what you get up to with your pumpkins, and what you think of Rougham Pumpkin Patch if you visit. To see the video of our day check out our Instagram reel.

Rebecca x

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