About an hour north of Seattle is a surprising little adventure my twins love. Whenever we have a free morning, a visit to Outback Kangaroo Farm is always on their wish list. The kangaroo farm is in Arlington, Washington, in the Stillaguamish Valley.
Outback Kangaroo Farm is a family-owned small business. It’s a breeding farm and many of the animals roam freely in open areas, and they do what they do right there with you. We wear sturdy shoes and dress for the outdoors.
To get to the Outback Kangaroo Farm, you’ll pass through the small town of Arlington, Washington. Heading east on Highway 530, look for the sign and watch for the free-roaming peacocks, or peahens with peachicks, right there in the parking area.
You visit the kangaroo farm on scheduled tours, so you’ll need to plan ahead to make your tour time. Every tour we’ve taken has been led by owners Ray and Joey Strom. You start at the lemurs, where a family group hops around eating bananas while you hear information about their lives in the wild. On our last tour, some mini donkeys also wandered by and gave it a real Doctor Dolittle feel.
At the Outback Kangaroo Farm, the animals that are better at being admired from afar are behind fences, with plenty of reminders for curious little ones. Still, I’d bring enough adults to keep a close eye on kids as they get excited to see the animals.
The tour guides do a great job of keeping the group moving and giving enough information about each animal. There is a lot of hands-on time, with bread scraps and alfalfa to feed the kangaroos, wallabies, alpacas, llamas, turtles, chickens, and many other animals that appear any time the food is handed out.
The animals we’ve fed and touched seem gentle and obviously used to people, but my daughter has been the only one in the family brave enough to hug a kangaroo so far. You can also feed the llamas and alpacas from your mouth. Not sure we’ll ever do that.
The tour lasts about 40 minutes. There is an area to wash everyone’s hands before you leave. The kangaroo farm has portable bathrooms, tables, and a small gift shop. Plan to head back into Arlington for lunch or snacks.
The farm is open March through October, with tours by appointment in the winter. The farm’s website www.outbackkangaroofarm.com has more information.
If you want to make a day of it, the Stillaguamish Valley is a great place to explore farms and small town attractions. Check out www.visitstillyvalley.com for ideas.
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