Sometimes you just need to get a way from things and go do something completely different for a weekend so that’s what I did.
I’ve never really been to any zoo’s in the UK. The only place I remember going as a child is Chester Zoo, the horrendous rain and how enormous the giraffes were. It was a good day all in all, I think we even have some photographs in the attic.
Since I am in South Yorkshire, I decided to take a trip to The Yorkshire Wildlife Park, near Doncaster. It has recently introduced a Polar bear enclosure, and they have one polar bear, Victor, who seems very much at home.
My driver, fellow animal explorer and occasional photographer for the weekend was Jack.
We were quite lucky with the weather and managed to stay away from the rain. With packed lunches and batteries fully charged we headed off to the park for the day. I could go in to detail about everything that we saw, but then you wouldn’t need to go so instead I’ve picked my top three animals to see; Meercats, Lions and the Squirrel Monkeys. (The tigers obviously get an honourable mention too).
As you first enter the park, there are 2 or 3 Meercat enclosures with open tops. They are just so cute and fun to watch. In one of the areas there were also mongoose.
The three areas are all connected to the central hut via tunnels. It was fun to watch the Meercats just pop up out of the ground.
Next we have the Lions. Their enclosure is huge. They have three lion prides at the park and one of the prides has a Lioness called Maria. When we went, it was clear to see that one of the females was heavily pregnant. I can’t wait to go again to see some lion cubs. They weren’t too active, as the sun was just coming out so they were mostly sunbathing. Later on during the day, while we were wandering around the other end of the park, we heard the lions roaring. It was amazing.
Third, we have the Squirrel Monkeys. I think they are my favourite animal at the park for two main reasons. 1. They reminded me so much of Pippi Longstockings as she has a squirrel monkey as a pet in VillaKulla, and 2. because you were able to get so close to them. Their enclosure was part of a bigger area purely for south american animals. The monkeys were happy for us to just wander around and watch them climb about. One of the keepers told us how they can be quite cheeky and tend to steel phones from selfie sticks as well as glasses and children’s toys.
The tigers were incredibly beautiful to see, and they still are my favourite however purely based on which animals I had the most fun watching, they didn’t quite make it. They were super chilled out in the shade when we wandered through their enclosure, it would be cool to go again to see them when they’re being a bit more lively.
No trip out is complete without a look around the gift shop. I’d set aside some money for me to buy something from the shop as a reminder of the day. It was a difficult decision between Tiger and Monkey but in the end, Herr Nielsen won.
I’d definitely recommend a visit.
Peace and love,