What a fantastic place to be a donkey! And what a fantastic place to be a human seeing donkeys!
The Sanctuary is set up on a hill with beautiful views across a valley to the sea. The fields in which the donkeys roam are very spacious, and from the moment you arrive there are friendly donkeys to see. It was bigger than I expected, and we really enjoyed wandering round seeing all the donkeys. I hadn't realised they came in so many colours and patterns, nor had I realised how loud they are when they bray!!
The attraction is free, but I'm sure nobody visits without making a donation, however small. The excellent thing is that there is no pressure on you to do this - there is nobody sitting at the main entrance seeing if you put money in the box - instead there are boxes discreetly situated around the Sanctuary that you can pop your donation in at any time with nobody looking, at any stage of your visit.
As well as the fields and pens there is a yard area with selected donkeys freely roaming about, and the information says they change these donkeys regularly so the same ones are not meeting and greeting their fans all day! They are very friendly indeed and happy to be patted and stroked.
One of my favourite bits was coming across a huge barn next to the main yard which had loads of donkeys in, all happily tucking into the huge amounts of soft, fresh hay all over the floor. All you can hear is the rustling sound of happy donkeys eating! Very soothing!
It really is the most relaxing, happy place and the donkeys are clearly so well cared for. If I was a local I would be popping up here all the time for 'Donkey Therapy'!
There is a also quite a taxing maze - my husband is pretty good with directions so we managed to find the middle eventually but others in the maze weren't so lucky and didn't find it!
We had lunch at the very efficient and pleasant Hayloft restaurant. It was easy to order and the staff were very helpful and friendly. They do 'Donkey Bags' (sandwich, crisps, apple, drink, crayons and picture to colour) for children, although we didn't get one. From the Daily SpeciaIs I had a vegetable curry pastie with salad and potato wedges, which was all definitely home made and delicious. My husband had a sausage panini. (Jacket potato/sandwich for the children). There was plenty of choice on the menu and the Hayloft is a very spacious, calm environment to eat in.
To end we visited the Gift Shop which has a great range of all things Donkey! Good fun!
If I was on my own without the children I could easily have spent several hours there enjoying the peace and calm the donkeys emit. With my children aged 6 and 8 it was around a two hour visit, and as it was the final morning of our holiday was a great way to end it.
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