We LOVE outdoor family adventures! There’s nothing like breathing in the fresh air, taking in your surroundings and learning something new is there?
Now that we’ve got the beautiful weather AND the summer holidays on the horizon, I’ve been on the lookout for some goodies to tickle our senses and of course share with you all. I think I’ve found somewhere pretty special that’s perfect for little (and big) adventurers. Paradise Wildlife Park in Broxbourne, Hertfordshire! Here’s what we got up to when we visited.
Roaring to go, we arrived at Paradise Wildlife Park just shortly after opening time at 9.30am! I know! Really early right?! But the Little Button was super keen. We drove there and found the car park very slowly filling at this time. If arriving later, I wouldn’t worry at all as there’s plenty of parking spaces to go around.
On this occasion we were guests of Paradise Park, so we headed in via the discovery centre.
Right away we noticed that there were 2 parts to the park. The side closest to the discovery centre was the animal park, and the side closest to the entrance was the dinosaur park! Now how’s that for a surprise.
I want to start by saying how impressed we were by the animal park. All the animals looked happy, well fed and from what we saw – looked like they had really close bonds with the zookeepers. We’ve been to lots of animal parks, and it’s not something you see everyday – well done Paradise!
Our first stop was right into Birds of Paradise. Little Button had the fright of her life, as when approaching the African Spotted Eagle Owl house, it flew right up to her. We thought it might have been a fluke. But no matter where she moved, it squawked and followed only her! *It turned out it was just super excited and waiting for it’s turn to fly in the arena.
We were really lucky to get to watch some of the owls having their flying lessons during our visit. If you get a chance, I would definitely recommend having a peek. The keepers were really lovely and you could see certain owls had strong connections with particular keepers – it was completely fascinating! We were very impressed by how chatty and knowledgeable they were too, especially in this area.
Next up, and way too excited to follow any sort of plan, Little Button just went for it. Darting all over the place from one area to another! It was hard to keep track of where we were.
There was so much to discover. Everything from farm animals which you could feed (£1 per bag), penguins, reptiles, little and large mammals, primates and of course, the big cats!
We loved seeing all the animals, but Big Cat Territory really stole the show for us. Wow!
A new home for the white lions and lionesses takes complete centre stage in the animal park. We could have stood for hours watching them gracefully walking and lounging together. We came back a few times to watch them throughout the day and in the afternoon got a treat of seeing one of the big white lions. He was definitely our favourite!
By lunchtime, we managed to pry Little Button away from the animal park side and headed towards the food outlets and the dinosaur park.
We chose to eat lunch in the Safari Diner, which had all the usual fast food type of offerings. But, we were quite surprised to find that the prices were very reasonable indeed! Hooray. We would happily eat there again, or at one of the food stalls just outside the diner. *They do tasty fresh donuts and ice creams – which we bought on the way out.
Once fed, we decided that we HAD to visit the dinosaurs. And what a treat it was. It felt fully submersive and quite an adventure as we dipped into the dino-day care, walked in the footsteps of dinosaurs and were wowed by the life sized moving, roaring dinosaurs!
Little Button was able to recognise quite a few of the dinosaurs and loved the one that spits! Ekk!
The dino-dig zone was a firm favourite where you can uncover dinosaur bones! Thankfully, there was a place for the grown ups to sit while the little adventurers could probably have spent hours playing at fossil hunters.
I don’t think I’ve ever seen such a huge collection of life sized animatronic dinosaurs in one place!
We ended up spending the rest of the afternoon on this side of the park. Then popped back into the animal park for a quick goodbye to Little Buttons favourite animals before heading off home.
We all had a brilliant full day out at Paradise Wildlife Park. There was so much to see and do for the whole family. With Little Button being 6 years old, we managed to just about squeeze most things in, which meant we left feeling completely exhausted, but very satisfied.
We LOVE how the park is laid out into the different zones and also that playgrounds are dotted about in each side. These are fab little pit stops for little ones to let off steam throughout the day. Allowing them to have a break, and then get back to their exciting adventures.
Without a doubt Little Button had a fantastic day at Paradise Wildlife Park, and when it was home time, she didn’t want to leave! She’s given it a huge thumbs up and can’t wait to go back! ….. Neither can I.
Head on over to the Paradise Wildlife Park website to plan your visit. You’ll also see that there are some really special experiences that you can get involved in. But Shhhh!!!! Don’t tell Little Button as you have to be 10 years old or older for some of the animal experiences.
Disclosure: We were invited for a day out at Paradise Wildlife Park. All views are my own and I can definitely say that we all LOVED IT!