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Living History Farms

11121 Hickman Rd, Urbandale, IA 50322-3741
+1 515-278-5286
Review Highlights
How to be in a greater metro area without feeling like its a metro area!

It's an open air museum with real life demonstrations of activities needed to survive farm and home... read more

Reviewed 1 week ago
Fun fay of history

I had a great time traveling back in time. Lot's of history here. Interpreters were friendly... read more

Reviewed 4 weeks ago
via mobile
Read all 165 reviews
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Living History Farms is located in the western suburbs of Des Moines, Iowa in Urbandale and is conveniently located right off Interstates 35/80. It is an interactive outdoor museum which educates, entertains and connects people of all ages to Midwestern rural life experiences. 300 years of agricultural history are represented including a 1700 Ioway Indian Farm, 1850 Pioneer Farm, 1900 Horse-Powered Farm and an 1875 town. Tours are self guided and historic interpreters are at each farm site are dressed in clothing from each era to explain what it would have been like to live in that time. The general touring season is May 1 through October 14th. Many special events and historic dinners take place in the off-season. Visit the website for details.
  • Excellent66%
  • Very good24%
  • Average7%
  • Poor2%
  • Terrible1%
Travellers talk about
11121 Hickman Rd, Urbandale, IA 50322-3741
+1 515-278-5286
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Reviews (165)
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1 - 10 of 165 reviews

Reviewed 1 week ago

It's an open air museum with real life demonstrations of activities needed to survive farm and home life prior to our modern era. Demonstrations change daily, and there is usually some opportunity to either watch up close, or at times do some hands on. You...More

Thank BrandyInSD
Reviewed 4 weeks ago via mobile

I had a great time traveling back in time. Lot's of history here. Interpreters were friendly. The tractor ride was the highlight.

Thank mikeshelp
Reviewed 18 May 2017

They have a little church at the top of the hill and yes, you can book it for weddings. It was very romantic and the family loved the small church. As for just out there having fun. We've been out there a bunch of times...More

Thank Fam_Tvler
Reviewed 11 April 2017

I have been to Living History Farms many times with my grandkids. Each time we go we discuss with real examples how their grandpa, great and great-great grandparents lived and worked on Iowa farms. The farms give us the opportunity to do some hands on...More

1  Thank Jim L
Reviewed 15 February 2017

Plan to spend a full day. It's best during planting and harvest seasons, but any time is good for a visit. If you really want to experience 1800's living, have dinner at the Tangen home (requires reservations).

2  Thank JamaicaDave_13
Reviewed 4 February 2017

I love to go visit the Living History in the Spring and tour the shops to watch things being made the old fashioned way. Sometimes I can take a riding tour on a gay rack pulled by horses. The old farm house is great to...More

2  Thank david_hance_iowa
Reviewed 18 January 2017

I have visited Living History on numerous occasions & varied times of seasons. This is one outing that everyone in the family will enjoy. I never tire of the experience I get from the extra activities that change.

2  Thank nancyaI6889PL
Reviewed 16 January 2017

Was a very enjoyable night with a delicious dinner eaten under lanterns!! Had a fun program telling us all about superstitions. Played a game dealing with that also.

1  Thank glhawk20
Reviewed 9 January 2017

Many people would find a tour of a old time farm interesting. Starting with seeing how a local Indian people farmed before The United States was formed. You then see how the early white settlers established their farms during the pioneer days. From there, you...More

2  Thank seacorp
Reviewed 7 January 2017 via mobile

Loved the authentic farms, plus the delightful walk from one to another. Guides were helpful and thorough and we got a good sense of how life was lived through the centuries on the Iowa plains. The historic town was delightful, again with guides providing solid...More

1  Thank spanishpeeks
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Questions & AnswersAsk a question
Don't you have a day when you have a jury trial reenacted, and the audience is picked as the jury? I want to know when this is happening. Also, do you still have old fashioned square dancing and contra dancing? What are those dates?
2 February 2017|
Response from LivingHistoryFarms | Property representative |
Hello! Yes we will have Circuit Court Day on July 29th this year. We do not have any Barn Dances scheduled for this season. Thank you for writing!
Can I bring my dog?
6 October 2016|
Answer Show all 3 answers
Response from LivingHistoryFarms | Property representative |
Hi - thank you for your question. Dogs are always welcome at Living History Farms. Dogs must be on standard (non-retractable) leashes, and remain outside buildings and away from livestock. We, of course, ask that you clean... More
Is it still free to go just to the general town area?
6 August 2015|
Response from LivingHistoryFarms | Property representative |
Thanks so much for your question. We do have one admission price to visit both our 1875 town and our three working farm sites. We are proud to offer free parking and that all activities are included with the admission price... More