Chicks and lambs and piglets—oh my! This is the season for baby animals to arrive so it’s the perfect time to plan a trip to a local farm or petting zoo near you. Most of them are free to visit and they are the perfect weekend activity for families. Find our favorite spots below!

East Bay

Tilden Little Farm, Berkeley

The Little Farm was built in 1955 and features a variety of farm animals including cows, sheep, goats, rabbits, chickens and pigs. Several heritage breeds are preserved here, including Milking Shorthorn Cattle. Visitors are welcome to bring lettuce or celery (but nothing else) to feed the animals.

Berkeley, CA
Online: ebparks.org

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Ardenwood Historic Farm, Fremont

Ardenwood Historic Farm is a Regional Historic Landmark in Fremont that is open to the public on a daily basis. At Ardenwood, you will see sheep, pigs, turkeys, chickens, rabbits, goats and cows.

34600 Ardenwood Blvd.
Fremont, CA
Online: ebparks.org

Peninsula

Harley Farms Goat Dairy, Pescadero

This working goat farm is a great place to visit when you head to the coast. They offer tours that you can book in advance or visit the farm on our own during working hours: Fri.-Sun. 11 a.m.-4 p.m. Stop by the farm shop before you leave to purchase products to take home.

205 North St.
Pescadero, CA
Online: harleyfarms.com

 

photo: Kate Loweth

Hidden Villa, Los Altos Hills

This farm offers year-round programs to provide individuals and families with opportunities to learn about the environment and enjoy all that Hidden Villa has to offer. You can milk a cow or join a bird hike or bake breads from around the world. Spring is a great time to take the barnyard babies tour. Parking is $10 unless you are there for a paid activity. They are closed on Mondays and during the summer for camps.

26870 Moody Rd.
Los Altos Hills, CA
Online: hiddenvilla.org

Lemos Farm, Half Moon Bay

Just over the hill into Half Moon Bay will get you to Lemos Farm. In addition to being one of the hot spots for pumpkins in the fall, Lemos offers farm animals that you can visit with year-round. Ride a pony in the ring or meet goats, pigs, sheep and more in the petting zoo. You can even try out goat yoga! 

12320 San Mateo Rd.
Half Moon Bay, CA
Online: lemosfarm.com

 

South Bay

photo: Kate Loweth

McClellan Ranch, Cupertino

The Rolling Hills 4-H group houses many of its animals at this ranch in Cupertino. Ranch tours are offered on the second Saturday of the month (excluding Dec.-Feb.). Meet the 4-H members and learn how they take care of their animals. Here you can meet chickens, goats and sometimes pigs and steer.

22221 McClellan Road
Cupertino, CA
Online: facebook.com

Deer Hollow Farm, Cupertino

Deer Hollow Farm is a 160 year-old historical ranch in Silicon Valley. It offers spring farm tours, summer programs and an Ohlone Day Festival in the fall. Admission is free except during special events.

22500 Cristo Rey Dr.
Cupertino, CA
Online: deerhollowfarmfriends.org

Emma Prusch Farm Park, San Jose

Emma Prusch Farm Park is a 43.5 acre park in East San Jose and home to what many say is the biggest wooden barn in California. Local 4-H youth use the barn to raise their market and breeding animals. The barn serves as a residence to steers, goats, sheep and pigs (swine).

647 S King Rd.
San Jose, CA
Online: pruschfarmpark.org

North Bay

photo: Slide Ranch

Slide Ranch, Muir Beach

The mission of Slide Ranch is to connect children to nature. Farm days, campouts, summer programs and more are all available at this Muir Beach ranch. They even have special programs where toddlers get to meet animals and learn what it takes to take care of them.

2025 Shoreline Hwy,
Muir Beach, CA
Online: slideranch.org

Tara Firma Farms, Petaluma

This farm raises animals and grows veggies to support their CSA business. You can swing by on the weekends at 11 a.m. for a free tour. You will learn about the farm and CSA, what "pasture raised" means and how farms like Tara Firma Farms are on the front lines to fight climate change, reduce water usage and build better soil through the latest methods in carbon farming

3796 I St.
Petaluma, CA
Online: tarafirmafarms.com

Ramini Mozzarella, Tomales

For a visit with a totally different animal, head to Tomales to meet the buffalo of Ramini Mozzarella. Tours and tastings are offered on Saturdays.

175 Gericke Rd.
Tomales, CA
Online: raminimozzarella.com

photo: Kate Loweth

Pennyroyal Farm, Boonville

Head north via Highway 128 so that you can pass through Boonville, home to Pennyroyal Farm. This farmstead creamery and winery offers daily tours of the barn where you can meet the goats and sheep that live there. Learn all of their names (yes, each one has a name!), how these animals are raised and how their milk is turned into cheese. Time your visit with lambing season in the spring for an extra-special treat!

Your tour ends with a wine and cheese tasting for the parents and a grape juice and cheese tasting for the kids. Extend you visit with some lunch from the kitchen while the kids visit the resident bunny. Tours: $20/adult, $10/ages 5-20, under 5 are free.

14930 Highway 128
Boonville, CA
Online: pennyroyalfarm.com

—Kate Loweth

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