The cutest farm I ever did see! Hello Kitty and her friends are everywhere at Tanaka Farms reminding you of your childhood (if you were a fan) or making you become one. It is a perfect size farm with a variety of activities for all guests including a pumpkin patch, pumpkin canon, petting zoo, corn maze, wagon ride, face painting, and games. And for anyone who loves photo opportunities, there are Sanrio character poster stands scattered throughout every section of the farm.
When we arrived we were greeted with a fun Sanrio paper hat and a map to navigate the area. My kids went straight to the bales of hay maze, then the big green tractors for pretend play, followed by pumpkin picking at the patch. There are a variety of pumpkins to choose from and if you want to purchase more than you can handle, there are wheelbarrows to use. We took many family pictures in front of Hello Kitty and her friends. The poster signs are actually nice when you are walking with toddlers because they aren’t really focused on the distance they are walking but rather on the next sign they will come across. So this is definitely a plus when you might be with toddlers who aren’t walkers. The wagon ride was awesome because we went around the perimeter of the farm and saw the variety of fruits and vegetables they offer and we had front row seats to the pumpkin canon. The kids got to sit directly behind the tractor so it was nice for them to see a real tractor in use. We decided to have lunch before visiting the animals at the petting zoo. The food was tasty and there was a variety of options. I’ll post pictures below on the quick reference guide. My 4 year old actually ate the corn dog minis and loved the strawberry lemonade. After lunch, we went to the petting zoo and fed some of the chickens, sheep, and goats. The best part was seeing chicks, calves, and lambs since we don’t see many babies at petting zoos. There is a whole row of activities too! Many people were playing games, ATV rides, and painting pumpkins and bird houses. There is also a corn and sunflower maze that you can walk through, along with Sanrio signs scattered inside. I also liked that the patch and the mazes are wheelchair and stroller accessible.
Traveling a distance? Since I came from the Valley, the farm is about 10 degrees cooler so pumpkin picking felt like a breeze (pun intended). It was worth it. From the Valley it is an hour drive but doesn’t feel bad when you leave in the morning. This place is so worth the drive and Tanaka Farms is 13 minutes away from the Irvine Spectrum where you can walk and dine. I’m all about higher education, so I was thrilled to know it is only 10 minutes from the University of California, Irvine. If you are interested in visiting a beach, Laguna Beach is only 20 minutes away on the 133. I told my husband we need to have a weekend staycation over here because the entire area is beautiful.
Ticket price: Entrance fee is $4 per person, wagon ride is $6, and the petting zoo is $4, or opt for a a package that includes all of it for $12. If you are taking children under 2 years old they are free. And any activities outside this such as the games and painting are priced separately via tickets. Entrance time is between 9am-6pm and will last until October 31st.
Parking: You must purchase a parking pass for $5 in order to get into Tanaka Farms if you are going over the weekend. During the week parking is free. But get your parking pass the sooner the better because they might run out.
Restrooms: There are only portable restrooms and sink stations.
Hangry tots? The food is tasty at Tanaka Grill. My toddlers ate the the mini corndogs! You can also buy a Hello Kitty lunch box if you want your lunch to look cute in a tin. I had BBQ pork sandwich and my husband tried their carne aside vegetable rice bowl. The strawberry lemonade is definitely big enough to share with a toddler! I liked that you can opt to sit on benches or bales of hay. My kids loved eating on a bale of hay because we don’t do that on the daily. And by the way, you can use all major credit cards, just not the Costco Visa. And if by any chance they run out of the lunch tin, you can always buy it at the general store.
Where can I put my pumpkins? Wheelbarrows are provided, but we just used our stroller. We were able to fit 4 large pumpkins and 5 minis comfortably.
Sanrio Market Stand? There are so many adorable Hello Kitty merchandise to chose from! Here are a few items I picked up for me and my sisters.
What should I bring? Closed-toe shoes because it’s all dirt, and a changing mat if you are still using diapers because there are only portable bathrooms. Bring your sanitizer because I only saw sanitizing stations near the petting zoo. There is a first aid station near the Tanaka Grill just in case you forget one.
Learn with Hello Kitty: Maybe Hello Kitty contributed towards my love for learning. I always remembered going to the Hello Kitty store and buying a little bit of school supplies before school started and feeling eager to use that pencil case or cute erasers. I’m feeling nostalgic now and I have to thank Tanaka Farms for having my family experience that feelings I got when I was a child. I’m all about finding fun learning activities and at Tanaka Farm there are plenty of opportunities to teach your children about the farm life. They also provide this pumpkin fact sheet which is neat because you can learn about different pumpkins while you are exploring the patch.
Can’t make it during the fall? The Holiday Santa Tour and Sanrio Village will begin November 23rd! You will have the opportunity to visit Santa and take a ton of pictures with Hello Kitty and friends while enjoying a wagon ride! They will be selling Christmas trees so this is exciting news!