Swank Farms is located in Hollister, CA and has the most amazing fall festival full of pumpkin patches, sunflower fields, corn mazes and many photo opportunities! As I am staying more local this year, I wanted to visit a pumpkin patch and more importantly a sunflower field. Sunflowers are my favorite flower in the world so the thoughts of 1000’s of sunflowers surrounding me made me very excited.
Swank Farms Pumpkin Patch, Sunflower Fields and Corn Mazes: the best pumpkin patch and Sunflower farm near San Francisco and the Bay area
Swank Farms is a 1.5 hour drive from San Francisco, 30 mins from Salinas, 50 minutes from San Jose and 45 minutes from Monterrey. I did lots of research to find the best pumpkin patches, sunflower fields and corn mazes near San Francisco and the Bay area and found Swank Farms. Swank Farms has all 3 pumpkin patches, sunflower fields and corn mazes which are hard to find at one farm. I loved this cute little farm and the drive from San Francisco was so nice.
What to do at Swank Farms including pumpkin patches, sunflower fields and corn mazes
There is lots to do at Swank Farms especially for families with little children. I mentioned the pumpkin patches, sunflower fields and corn mazes at Swank Farms above as they were the main highlights for me except there is so much more at Swank Farms to keep you entertained. Swank Farms in Hollister, CA, has goats to visit, chickens to visit, a scary looking hill slide for kids, picnic benches to sit on and a food truck onsite. Right now, Swank Farms have their Fall Festival which celebrates all the fall traditions. They have also added the Trail of Lights and Frights which is a trail of lights for Halloween that is very popular. We went to visit Swank Farmz during the day so didn't stay to see the Trail of Lights and Frights.
Let's get to my absolute favorite part of Swank Farms Fall Festival….
Swank Farms Sunflower Field - the best sunflower field near San Francisco
Swank Farms has a beautiful sunflower field, 1.5 hours south of San Francisco, that is filled with 1000’s of sunflowers. The sunflower field near San Francisco has rows upon rows of sunflowers that you can meander through at your ease. I was DELIGHTED with life exploring these bay area sunflower fields. There are so many different varieties of sunflowers and all different shapes and sizes of sunflowers. One of my favorite sunflowers was the massive sunflowers shown below. I had no idea that sunflowers could be this big. We took lots of photos in the sunflower field. We arrived at Swank Farms about 12pm so the sun was quite strong. There were only a couple more people in the massive sunflower field when we were at Swank Farms so it was okay to take our masks off as we were about 20 feet away at all times. The sunflower field at Swank Farms is incredibly beautiful and just as I imagined. I highly recommend going to Swank Farms for the sunflower fields alone. At Swank Farms, you are allowed to pick your own sunflowers!! They are $2 each or $30 for a whole bag. I picked the most beautiful bunch of sunflowers and they are going to be my rays of sunshine this week as I work from home.
Top tips at Swank Farm Sunflower Fields near San Francisco:
We toured the sunflower field, then the rest of the farm and came back to pick our sunflowers so we didn’t need to carry them around the farm.
Come to the sunflower fields early in the day to avoid the crowds and also so the sun isn’t beating down for better pictures. For photos, avoid busy patterns and prints as simple is better with the beautiful flowers.
There are massive sunflowers that I have yet to see available for purchase in a store. These massive sunflowers are $2 regardless of size.
Swank Farms Pumpkin Patch - the best Pumpkin Patch near San Francisco
After the sunflower field, it was onto the pumpkin patch at Swank Farms for some Fall fun. The pumpkin patch was slightly busier than the sunflower field. We took a few minutes to sit down on the bricks of hay and people watch. There were lots of families picking pumpkins and taking cute photos. This was my first time at a pumpkin patch and I loved all the different types of pumpkins including all the colors, shapes and sizes. You can pick your own pumpkin and you pay by the pound.
Top tip at Swank Farms pumpkin patch near San Francisco:
Take a picture sitting on the hay with the corn maze in the background for an amazing contrasting picture with the pumpkins. Another great picture is holding a pumpkin with the sunflowers in the background as not many farms have both sunflowers and pumpkin patches together.
Swank Farm Corn Maze:
I was unaware a corn maze was a fall farm thing however nowI realize it is. It was so therapeutic walking through the corn maze. It was quiet other than the corn blowing gently in the wind. The maze is laid out perfectly so follow the path and you can’t go wrong. The corn maze has different stopping points along the route which tells the cutest story of a pumpkin who didn’t fit in...yes we read it as we walked along. It is such a cute story for little kids.
Swank Farm Fall Festival
Swank Farm Fall Festival takes place until Nov 1. As part of the Fall festival, there is a Lights and Frights trail which is full of Halloween lights and is a walkable trail that lights up in the evening. As I mentioned above, we came for the sunflower fields and the pumpkin patch so skipped the lights as we went during the day. This is a really cool feature of the Fall Festival for kids.
Swank Farm Pumpkin Patch and Sunflower Field tickets
Swank Farm tickets for the pumpkin patch and sunflower fields are available online HERE. You can also buy the tickets at the gate. It is $4 cheaper online so if you know you are definitely going, then purchase online. You purchase the ticket and then it is good for any day. The pumpkin patch and sunflower fields were socially distanced and it was quieter than what I expected which was so nice. They also took our temperature before we entered the farm which I liked.
For opening hours, check out the opening hours here as they may be subject to change. Some days, the farm is open until 10pm at night for the Trail of Lights and Frights and other days it closes a little earlier.
Swank Farms Pumpkin Patch, Sunflower Fields and Corn Mazes: pumpkin patch and Sunflower farm near San Francisco and the Bay area - my overall review and final thoughts:
Overall, I had an amazing time at Swank Farms. It is definitely the best pumpkin patch, sunflower fields and corn mazes near San Francisco and the Bay area. For the authentic pumpkin farm and sunflower fields experience, I recommend visiting Swank Farms.
Some other top tips for visiting pumpkin patch, sunflower field and corn mazes near the Bay Area:
Although it is fall, dress for warm weather. It was so hot when we were there so fall fashion would be a little too warm for comfort.
If you want good pictures, early morning or late afternoon/evening is best for golden hour for the pumpkin patches, sunflower fields and corn mazes.
Wear plain clothing for photos at the pumpkin patch and sunflower fields. Busy patterns clash with the flowers and pumpkins (learnt this from years of modeling)
Remember to sanitize after touching any pumpkins. Who knows how many people have touched them.
Wear a mask in any areas where there are lots of people. In lots of areas of the farm especially the sunflower fields, it will be just you so you can breathe the fresh country air
Enjoy and take lots of pictures of the pumpkin patches, sunflower fields and corn mazes!
There is another farm near Half Moon Bay which is really good also for pumpkin patches however the sunflower fields are closed for 2020 which made me choose Swank Farms. If you only are interested in the pumpkin patch, then Andreotti Family Farms Pumpkin Patch is another option for you to explore. This pumpkin patch is 50 minutes drive from San Francisco.