Located in northwest Indiana, Fair Oaks Farms is the perfect family-friendly destination for anyone looking to get a true Midwest experience. It’s the #1 agritourism destination in the Midwest and you can easily spend more than a day here. The Fair Oaks Farms campus includes a hotel, daily adventures and tours, museums, a farm-to-table restaurant, a cafe, a gift shop, a dog park, a nature trail, and more.
Fair Oaks Farm is conveniently located just a few miles from the Illinois border and close to several larger cities. It’s a short drive from these locations:
Dairy Adventure and Tour
There are three daily adventures and two tours available: the Dairy Adventure and Tour, the Pig Adventure and Tour, and the Crop Adventure. You’ll want to get your day started at the Admission Booth to plan your Fair Oaks Farms itinerary. This is where our adventures began; a friendly staff member provided us with information, a map of the campus, and tickets. They also scheduled our bus tours.
While we waited for our Dairy bus tour to begin, we ventured through the Dairy Birthing Barn and witnessed two calf births. There are calves born every day at the farm.
Inside the Dairy Adventure building, hours of fun await families. The virtual reality lab, a 4D movie, photo opportunities, interactive games, and activities are great for all ages; especially those aged 12 and under.
At our scheduled bus tour time, we loaded the Fair Oaks Farms dairy bus by the back of the Dairy Adventures building. It’s a quick, narrated drive to the dairy facility (at another location) where the cows live. The tour is partially by bus, and partially by foot through the dairy barns. Don’t worry about getting dirty – you’ll only be touring the visitor viewing areas.
From Memorial Day to Labor Day, Mooville is open for outdoor play. It includes a Milk Carton Climbing Tower, a Moo Choo Train, and a Dairy Jump bouncing pillow. These activities are all included with admission.
Pig Adventure and Tour
Similar to the dairy bus tour, the pig bus tour takes you on a narrated drive to the pig barn (at another location). The bus stop is located at the back of the Pig Education Building. On the tour, see baby piglets in the pig barn and have the opportunity to ask questions about the farm.
In the Pig Education Building, there is a 3-level indoor ropes course for the kids. This is the only activity at Fair Oaks that costs an additional fee. In the rest of the building are interactive activities, Peppa Pig’s house, a treehouse, an interactive pig sonogram, and Pigterest Board.
The Crop Adventure does not include a bus tour, but the Crop Building is my favorite for interactive exhibits as an adult. Plus there is an excellent cornfield photo backdrop inside, and I can’t pass up an opportunity for that! The globe movie screen, underground root systems passageways, curved screen movie created by National Geographic, and outdoor gardens are all part of the fun of this adventure.
Farm-to-table food options
The Farmhouse Restuarant is Fair Oaks Farms’ fine dining option. Ingredients are grown on the farm and sourced from surrounding local farmers. The menu offers steak, sandwiches, pizza, and farmhouse favorites. On Saturdays and Sundays, they offer Brunch. A huge, cozy fireplace is the centerpiece of the room. And you’ll be able to watch the culinary team prepare your meal from the large windows between the dining room and kitchen.
Don’t skip dessert! The portion sizes are large enough to feed two. Check out the Farmhouse seasonal events, such as the heated Igloo rentals available during the winter season.
A more casual dining option can be found at the Cowfé. This is where you can find Fair Oaks Farms’ famous grilled cheese and ice cream. The Cowfé is a counter ordering set-up with a deli-style menu of sandwiches, grilled cheese, and sides. Additionally, they have an ice cream counter, chocolate counter, and gift shop inside.
The Dairycatessen is located inside the convenience store of the Fair Oaks Farms fuel station. A grab-and-go deli case is stocked with sandwiches, snacks, cheeses, salads, milk, and ice cream. It’s the perfect stop to pick up some road trip snacks or stock up on treats for your hotel stay.
Spend the night at Fair Oaks Farms
Have you ever stayed in a hotel that looked like a red barn with silos? A Fairfield Inn by Marriott is located on the Fair Oaks Farms campus and it is designed and decorated to honor Indiana farming. Guests are greeted with friendly service and bright colors. The hotel is filled with family-friendly activities and things to do. The lobby and Great Room have plenty of seating, pool tables, and outdoor seating that leads to a Nature Trail. A family pool, kid’s water slide, indoor/outdoor hot tub, and a gym are also available to guests.
The silos house family, business, and bridal suites. The family suites include bunk beds and sleep up to six. A free continental breakfast is available daily. The Fairfield Inn is attached to the Farmhouse Restaurant.
Bring Fido along for the adventure
Fair Oaks Farms is pet-friendly. A free dog park, Central Bark, is located on the farm for furry, four-legged visitors. Central Park has separate large and small dog areas. The Fairfield Inn has pet-friendly rooms available. Dogs are allowed on the grounds and the porch of the Farmhouse Restaurant, just not in the buildings.
Tips for visiting Fair Oaks Farms:
- If visiting for more than one day, or with more than four people in your family, you might want to consider an annual membership (it is the same price as the total for daily passes).
- Check the weather in advance to know how to dress. Activities are both indoors and outdoor and they are open rain or shine.
- There is a Mother’s Lounge and a handicap-accessible adult changing room located in the Feedbarn (next to the Admissions Building) for those who want to prepare for stops ahead of time.
- Fair Oaks Farms is on Central Time (CST).
- Visit Fair Oaks Farms in the Fall for the apple orchard, pumpkin patch, festivals, and harvest season. Visit in the winter for the magical Forest of Lights and heated igloos.
- Plan for a long day, or split your visit up into two days. Completing all three of the adventures will take between 4 and 6 hours, depending on how busy the farm is. Summer, late Spring, and early Fall are the busiest times to visit.
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