Growing up we rarely went to the Sydney Royal Easter Show (with 4 kids I don't blame my parents for not taking us every year!). However my sister and I love going, so for the past 3 years we've taken Mr 5 (Mr 2 went when he was 4 months old and then again this year) .
We usually manage to go on a week day before school holidays start, however this year due to Mr 5 being at school and my sister recently starting a new job, we had to go on a weekend. So we went the first Saturday it was open and surprisingly it wasn't as busy as we thought it would be! A few queues, but these moved quickly, and no big crowds in the showbag hall.
So first up, we bought tickets a few days before via the NRMA website (they had a 20% discount, so be sure to check this out in future years. It does finish before the show starts though) and also prebooked parking (P1 is ideal as its right next to one of the entrances) as the kids are too tired by the end to catch public transport home.
Parking in P1 means you enter straight into the younger kids carnival area (rides suitable for the younger age groups, I'd say 2-10yrs old). My boys went on a couple of rides, with Mr 2 being tall enough to go on by himself with his brother.
Next stop were the animals. We walked through the pig section and saw lots of little piglets with their mumma's and some rather large goats!
To get to the Farmyard Nursery you walk through the Food Farm pavilion. This one is great for the kids as there's a lot of activities for them to do, plus they learn all about how food is grown. They each had a turn at milling flour, rolling dough for "pies" and making spaghetti. They weighed themselves in an animal weighing machine and Mr 5 learnt how bees take pollen back to their hives.
We then moved onto the farmyard nursery where the kids can walk amongst goats, sheep and chickens and also feed them. Mr 2 was feeding a goat who got a bit keen and jumped up onto his chest and pushed him over backwards! He cried a bit but a cuddle from his Aunty quickly made it better, and he was back to feeding them in no time. Around the edges of the farmyard nursery there are other baby animals behind fences and in the middle they have the ducks (if you've been to the show before I'm sure you will have seen the ducklings walk up the ramp to get food and then slide down into the water!).
Following on from the farmyard nursery we walked through the cow section (Mr 5 was not impressed with the smell!) and then went out and found the dinosaurs. This one is newer to the show I think, last year was the first time we've seen it. Inside here they have large moving "dinosaurs" and a section where, for $5, the kids can dig for "dinosaur fossils".
A lunch stop was next on the agenda and Mr 2 had a nap in his pram. I'd packed lunch and food for the kids (saves so much money!) but bought Mr 5 some fairy floss. My sister and I had a chip on a stick- gotta have at least one food on a stick whilst at the show!
We then visited the Woolworths Fresh Food Dome and checked out the District Exhibits- always so awesome to see them each year. There's some very talented people who design and make these and they show such a variety of the food grown by our farmers. We found a man who had some sharks in containers and he asked who was brave enough to touch them. Mr 5 was a bit hesitant but with his Aunty by his side, gave the shark a pat!
The much anticipated showbag hall was next!! We buy one showbag for each kid and Mr 2 was pretty decisive with his Thomas the Tank Engine bag. Mr5, however, had a much harder time deciding! We wandered from stall to stall checking them out and he finally settled on the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle bag.
We were all pretty exhausted by then so did a quick walk past the cake displays, one last ride on the mini train and then back to the car and home. There was so much more we could have done, however we had a great day....and there's always next year!