Our autumn half term in Cornwall started with a visit to the Eden Project, Bodelva, St.Austell.Originally a china clay pit, it will be celebrating it’s 15th birthday in 2016, host the world’s largest collection of plants in captivity.Two huge biomes house plants from the Rainforest and Mediterranean regions.Flanked by outdoor gardens, these grow from the climate here.Each area is divided into wild landscapes and crops, showing how plants are important for us to breathe as well as provide us with foods, drinks, fuels, medicines, fabrics, building materials, musical instruments, sports equipment, transport, makeup, books and furniture to name just a few.
Monday 26th October
During the autumn half term there’s a whole week of Halloween activities #halloweden.Mouse, aged 7 was keen to complete her bubble potion trail.She found the first part of her potion, healing water in the Rainforest biome easily enough but when we found the second part in the Mediterranean, there a very long queue with just one person filling up test tubes.We returned later to find the same very queue despite now having two people filling test tubes.Kip also shattered the illusion of the components of the potion by telling her that it was just water, washing detergent and glycerin to make bubbles.There were other activities, we gave up trying to take part as the queues were just far too long.There is an ice rink for an extra charge and Saturday there will be Little Monsters’ Ball.
This wasn’t mine or my mum’s first visit, I came in 2003 just two years after it’s opening and my mum last visited 5 years ago.We visited the Rainforest biome first.It didn’t seem very hot but the humidity was really high and you felt the difference when you left.A lot has changed in the 12 years since I visited, a number of plants have to be hacked back periodically as they started to take over.The Rainforest biome explores plants from tropical islands, southeast asia, west africa, tropical south america and the rainforest canopy.
After a picnic lunch we moved onto the The Mediterranean biome, which is a much cooler and drier biome, housing plants from the mediterranean, South Africa and California.I was expecting for it to have changed over the years like the Rainforest biome, but it was very disappointing. As well seasonal crops, you’ll see uses of cork, citrus fruits, tobacco (summer only), plants for cut flowers, grave vines and olives.There’s also a med terrace café here.
Once back outside it was now raining and we were getting tired.The outdoor gardens there are 20 exhibits looking at crops, gardens and wild landscapes from our own climate, zig zagging down to the stage, biomes and The Core.We visited The Core education centre, the spiky looking building.The ground floor looks at plant ecosystems, the first floor looks at the human microbiome and the core café is on the second floor.
The Nutcracker looks at energy and resources to do simple things.Wind the handle of this machine to transport a tiny hazelnut around an assault course of cogs, wheels, pulleys and cranks before you get it cracked.As this area was the last part of our visit, it was raining and arguments ensued about going on the Gravity Giant Swing and Skywire, neither of which I was aware of at the beginning of our visit.So we didn’t visit any of the gardens on the slopes, opting to leave and wait for our bus.
WEEE man is a waste giant all from Waste Electrical and Electrical Equipment (3.3 tonnes) one person throws away in a lifetime.WEEE man has been constructed from material supplied by Eden’s closest commercial neighbour, Henry Orchard & sons Ltd.Authorised to process WEEE (Waste Electrical and Electrical Equipment) they also recycle all forms of metal and vehicles and can offer recycling evidence direct to the manufacturers and compliance schemes.
We really enjoyed our visit at the Eden Project, 12 years was a long time to visit again and I hope my next visit won’t be as long.We did book our tickets ahead of time to save 10% online and looked at train times to St.Austell, other than that we didn’t plan our visit and I wish we had.I would have liked to looked around the outdoor gardens first to get inspiration for my own before going through the biomes.I don’t think we spent enough time in The Core education centre as it was the end of the day before we visited that.
Train tickets for St.Austell from Bodmin Parkway using a friends and family railcard were just over £10 for 2 adults and 3 children.
Buses run from outside St.Austell train station to the Eden Project.It was just over £15 for 1 adult and 3 children.
Tickets for the Eden Project for 2 adults and 3 children we just under £75 by buying online .
Joining in with Fiona of Coombe Mill’s Country Kids