There’s nothing like a family day out for making long-lasting memories and enjoying some special time together. These days, it’s often a challenge for busy working parents to find the time to dedicate to family fun and fresh air. Mat has been working abroad quite a bit since January, so extra time with dad is really important to Caitlin and Ieuan. This half term, we did something a little different and went on an Oreo Cookie Quest at one of our favourite places, Dyffryn Gardens.
The Great Oreo Cookie Quest!
Our adventure celebrated the launch of The Great Oreo Cookie Quest, an on-pack competition and interactive cookie quest activity with loads of wonder-filled prizes including a family trip to San Francisco. The competition is now closed but you can still play along.
So we challenged our readers…
Below you’ll find 10 photographs of our time at Dyffryn Gardens in which an Oreo has been hidden. Not all of the pictures contain an Oreo treasure though, just to throw you off the scent!
All the photographs are numbered so to play along, you’ll need to make a note of the numbers of the photographs you found the Oreo in. Remember, there should be 10 in all.
It’s time for your own Oreo Cookie Quest!
At the heart of Dyffryn Gardens stands Dyffryn House. It was home to the Cory Family, industrialists who made their wealth through coal. The present house was built in 1892-3 and is an unusual mix of many different styles of decor.
You’ll find a lovely little children’s play area outside the main entrance which is free to use. Entry to the House and Gardens is free for National Trust members, otherwise, there is an entrance fee in line with other National Trust properties.
It was quite a busy Friday but no matter when we go it is never too crowded. There is plenty of space for everyone to explore. The gardens at Dyffryn cover more than 55 acres and you’ll find intimate garden rooms, formal lawns and an extensive arboretum. You could easily spend a day here.
Caitlin and Ieuan have been coming to Dyffryn ever since they were little. Ieuan was usually dressed as Spiderman though – a fact he hates to be reminded of these days!
Because the day was so cold and grey, we found that most of our favourite statues had all be carefully covered with tarpaulins to protect them from frost damage.
There are so many interesting nooks and crannies to explore. Dyffryn Gardens is a fabulous place for picnics and games of hide ‘n’ seek.
Our explorations took us to the glasshouse where you’ll find tropical rain forest, dry desert and grape-filled vinery. There are lots of unusual and interesting species of cacti, orchid and vine, making it a real treasure trove for the garden enthusiast.
Leaving the warmth of the glasshouse behind we continued on to find the new wooded children’s playground.
Dyffryn is a really different experience in summer when the fruit trees are budding and the roses start to bloom. But I like the grey bleakness which I find makes me very philosophical.
The new play area features logs and cute animals carved into the wood. There are wooden picnic benches and an obstacle course of logs and wooden stepping stones for kids to play on. The logs are quite high so this play area is suitable for older children. Otherwise, full supervision is needed. Fun though!
As you can see, the logs are quite high.
The carvings are amazing. A lot of time and care obviously went into the making of the wooden benches.
As the sky became more overcast we decided to head from home but we did notice that the bluebells, snowdrops and some daffodils are out. Spring is trying to make an appearance!
Luckily we are a short 15 minute drive away in Dinas Powys. This means we get full value from our National Trust membership without even to visit other properties, although we certainly take full advantage of the opportunity where we can. There are so many amazing places to explore in the UK.
There are regular events and activities hosted at Dyffryn Gardens from botanical art courses to snowdrop planting and medieval music concerts. Something for every age and interest.
We are looking forward to the return of the sun when the Gardens are open a little later in the evenings, perfect for lazy after-school picnics and watching the sun go down.
Still, at least we had plenty of Oreos to help us on our quest this time.
So, did you find the hidden Oreos? Let me know in the comments below! Dyffryn Gardens is a fabulous place for an Oreo Cookie Quest!