If there’s something that compares to the joy of a toddler shoving a slice of apple into a chunk of freshly harvested honeycomb, I’m not sure what it is. We were out in the countryside, pretending to be farmers for an afternoon, alongside a few dozen other families who had the same idea.
We’d gone to visit Halbrecht Farm, a small operation located in the middle of a citrus grove in a little town right off one of the main highways leading north from Tel Aviv, and just north of Netanya. On weekends, they offer a host of activities suited to families with young children, for those of us who want to pretend we live on a farm. A very clean, picturesque farm with newly renovated facilities, of course.
We started our day at the farm with breakfast – a foccacia freshly baked in their mini-taboun oven, an omelet, chopped salad and half a dozen dips and cheeses, accompanied by freshly squeezed juice – and sat at one of the picnic tables amid the clementine tree grove.
After that we moved on to the activities. There were four on offer that day, including a beekeeping explanation, accompanied by a taste of honey fresh from the hive.
There was also a tour of the gardens that involved picking herbs and feeding chickens; a “cooking” seminar where the kids make juice and pita; and an arts and crafts activity. They charge per child, which is a pretty good deal for one toddler accompanied by two eager parents.
My son was particularly excited to play with all the toy dump trucks in the sandbox, but that doesn’t mean the other activities didn’t leave a memorable impression – he particularly liked picking herbs and making his own juice, and he now can tell us where eggs and honey come from.
Activities cost us 35 shekels apiece, or 85 shekels for the day. Breakfast was 45 shekels. The activities we attended were well-suited to older toddlers or elementary schoolers. You can check the farm’s Facebook page for their schedule – many activities seem to be offered Saturdays.