Kirk’s Alpaca Farm is an amazing experience visiting alpacas grazing in the field where you can feed them, pet them, and take funny pictures. I’m sharing all my tips for your unforgettable trip.
We’re lucky to live in Calgary, where endless options exist for family-friendly experiences. And even though our son is not even 3 years old, we’ve tried plenty of them.
Some experiences are great (like Creative Museum at Telus Spark Science Centre), and some are not suited for kids of all ages (like Heritage Park), but there’s a lot to choose from. While we love letting our son explore new things, we like the same for us adults. To make our weekends fun for all of us, we also explore outside the city limits.
Kirk’s Alpaca Farm delivers fun for all ages. It’s located about an hour outside of Calgary, so according to Canadian standards, it’s just a stone’s throw away.
When we visited Kirk’s Alpaca Farm in autumn, there were a few families, lots of friends and couples.
Just seeing the beautiful, funny face of alpacas will surely brighten your day!
Here’s everything you need to know about Kirk’s Alpaca Farm.
Info about Kirk’s Alpaca Farm
- Opening hours: Wednesday – Friday from 1 pm – 5:30 pm & Saturday from 9 am – 5:30 pm
- Dates: Open Saturdays Feb 4, 11 & 17 (from 11 am to 3 pm); from February 22, it’s open Wednesdays to Saturdays (until Christmas)
- Location: 320065B Range Road 255, Torrington, AB, Map
- Admission: mandatory online booking fee of 8 Cad/family, Admission is by donation (cash, credit and debit are accepted); Click here to book your visit
- For more info, see the Kirk’s Alpaca Farm website
About Kirk’s Alpaca Farm
- The family started with 38 alpacas in 2019
- When they learnt how to breed them, they opened their farm to the public in 2020
- Now they have 90 alpacas
Are you visiting alpacas or llamas?
This is confusing for many people: “so they look like llamas, but they’re called alpacas?” Well, not quite. Llamas are wild animals, and alpacas are domesticated. They come from South America, together with guanaco and vicuna, wild animals similar to llamas.
Alpacas are generally shy animals, as you see on the farm. At the farm, they’re not afraid when people approach them, and you can even pet some of them. Given that llamas are wild animals, they’re more aggressive. That being said, both species can spit when they feel threatened. We witnessed this on the farm when alpacas fought over food and spat on each other.
The main difference between alpacas and llamas is their size. Llamas are bigger and used as pack animals, while alpacas are bred for their soft fur (ideal for garments).
While alpacas mostly weigh 60-80 kg, llamas are bigger and can weigh up to 200 kg. Alpacas have lots of fur on their cute faces, while llamas’ faces have less fur.
You can see the difference in the picture below to give you an idea – the body size and heads are different. Alpaca on the left is from Kirk’s Alpaca Farm, and on the right is the llama that we saw in South America.
Tips about Kirk’s Alpaca Farm
- Online bookings through their website are required (spots fill out fast), and the fee covers alpaca food you get in a bag to feed them (keep the plastic bag and return it in the box by the farm shop so they can reuse it)
- You book a 2-hour time slot to see the alpacas, and after that, you can visit the farm shop, the playground or have a picnic
- Small snacks are available in the shop, but you can also bring your own picnic and enjoy the scenery
- There’s a huge playground with lots of outdoor equipment for kids
- The farm store offers local products, many featuring alpacas
- Wear comfortable and steady shoes, you walk where alpacas live, and there are lots of holes in the ground
- Strollers are allowed; just be aware there are lots of holes in the ground
Visiting the Kirk’s Alpaca Farm
We drove northeast of Calgary on a beautiful Saturday morning and reached Kirk’s Alpaca Farm sign after about 1 hour and 20 minutes.
While going down the short dirt road to the farm, we could already see lots of alpacas grazing on the meadows. The moment we parked the car and headed to the farm shop to pay admission, we were welcomed like a family. The owner is incredibly sweet, showed us around, and her husband handed us a bag of alpaca food.
Some alpacas were already roaming outside the gate and impatiently waiting for more visitors to arrive. The second they spot the food bag in your hand, they will follow you the whole time.
Most of them didn’t seem to like being pet, only the babies, though they were all about the food.
Sometimes alpacas weren’t patient enough for our little one to grab the seeds; they just dove straight into the bag. Luckily the owner didn’t hesitate to give us another bag, so our son could have more fun with the alpacas.
The fenced area where alpacas live is huge, so you can walk around and take lots of pictures without being crowded with people.
The 2-hour slot we booked for a visit is plenty of time to spend with alpacas. After we fed them, or they fed themselves from the bag, I don’t know which happened more often, we visited the farm store.
There are lots of alpaca-themed gifts, such as mittens and socks made of alpaca wool, sweaters, plaques, keychains, earrings, calendars, and lots more. We bought some pastry for the drive home, and of course, our son chose an alpaca sticker, which is much loved to this day.
The owner invited us to play when he spotted the playground behind the farm store. Even though visiting alpacas was amazing, this was the cherry on top for our son. We played on the big playground with all the cars, games, and equipment for another hour. You can also feed their chickens or have a picnic on the tables by the playground.
All in all, it’s almost a full-day trip if you’re visiting with kids. If you’d like a great weekend, visit the alpacas on the way to Drumheller, the Dinosaur Capital.
The husband and wife who run the farm are incredibly welcoming. The way they set up this alpaca experience (small booking fee + admission by donation) keeps the farm running and also makes it an affordable trip for families.
Visiting Kirk’s Alpaca Farm was one of the best experiences we had outside of Calgary, and we’ll be returning soon.
Special events at Kirk’s Alpaca Farm
- Photos with Santa at Christmas time
- Professional photoshoot with alpacas
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