An alpaca farm in the Lake District received the prestigious Travelers’ Choice Award 2021 from TripAdvisor, making it one of the top ten destinations on the travel review website for the second year in a row.
Alpacaly Ever After, a not-for-profit social enterprise based in Braithwaite, near Keswick, rescues and repositions alpacas and llamas.
And since its launch in October 2017, its popularity has skyrocketed, with demand for bookings and time with the alpacas at an all-time high.
CONTINUE READING: TripAdvisor ranks Lancashire Farm among the best in the world
The family-friendly farm specializes in providing experiences for a variety of sectors and organizations, from Launchpad Veterans Service to Cumbria County Council nursing.
Visitors can meet and feed the wool wonders, or take them on a stroll through Lingholm Estate’s private grounds, go down to the lake where they can even paddle or wade through the forest at Winlatter.
A more recent addition to the activities is llama trekking which includes a full day adventure in the Catbells and Maiden Moor overlooking Derwentwater.
“We often book quite well in advance,” said Alpacaly Ever After co-director Emma Smalley.
Emma started the project with her partner Terry Barlow after the couple moved from Manchester to Cumbria.
She said, “We are really proud to have won this award and if a guide gets a positive review we will post it in our group chat.
“It’s nice to know when you’re making a positive impact on people. It’s a big pat on the back, it really means a lot.”
“We have grown so much in the last four years.
“We get people coming to work with us and one of our guides has given up his job as a flight attendant in Dubai to come here.”
Seven full-time guides take care of the animals, and Emma says it’s the staff that’s why visitors return on multiple trips – as well as the “wonderful” alpacas, of course.
Emma says her guides know “everything” about the animals, from their personality to talking about why a particular animal is their favorite, and she admires the “dedication, passion and hard work” of their staff.
140 alpacas have been re-housed and rehabilitated since 2017. And not only the furry friends seem to benefit from their second chance in life, because their affable and cuddly nature is clearly therapeutic for humans.
Emma said, “We see visitors who come back three or four times and I think they love the fact that their money is being used for a good cause.
“A lady who visited us recently wrote to us and told us that the alpacas had changed her life.
“She has since started volunteering on her local farm and it’s amazing to hear the difference the alpacas can make.
“You are so comforting”.
In a series of new reviews, Alpacaly Ever After visitors have visited TripAdvisor to rave about their experiences with Milky, Barny, Kitty and friends.
“Gorgeous, chilled animals living their best lives with a fabulous team of people who genuinely love them and care for their needs,” wrote mrscarolinemeredith.
While Adrienne said: “Walking with the alpacas was such a nice experience, they are so gentle and easy to handle, the park area is beautiful and it was great to take the alpacas into the water.
“We had Popeye and Howard who were both lovely. Our guide Sam was brilliant, he knew all about the alpacas and the park and made our day even better. I highly recommend the hike to all ages.”
It is recommended that you book your visit to Alpacaly Ever After in advance due to the demand and so as not to miss out on seeing the #woollyarmy up close.
Are you in the mood for an adventure, you say? Alpaca my bags …
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