As you may have already guessed, the boyfriend and I are huge animal fans, and so we were a little surprised to realise that we had such a good zoo close by in Yorkshire that we hadn’t heard about! So we headed down to the Yorkshire Wildlife Park near Doncaster to see what we had been missing.
It was a bit of a grey day and so pretty quiet, but I an image as the summer holidays approach it will get very busy! Our first stop was the lions, who were split into three prides, although nearly all were related to each other in some way. They had all been rescued from a Romanian zoo who realised they just didn’t have the space and so they were flown over to retire to the Yorkshire countryside. They were very impressive giving us a huge roaring display as we walked around which was really cool, and we were reassured it was all friendly really.
The park also had a huge ‘savannah’ enclosure where several plains animals roamed together, but my favourite will always be the zebra here. This then led to the giraffe house which I loved as they are just so bizarre looking yet beautiful.
Just opposite this was the big cat enclosures- we waited ages to see the Amur Leopard cubs but only got the quicker glance of their mother as she raced off for her lunch! Their conservation work is pretty impressive and these leopards are a real achievement so it’s nice to see the good work in action and read all about it.
Other favourites were the wallaby walk where you could enter and get up close with the animals, several of who had tiny joeys in their pouches and seemed totally unfazed by the excited humans near by.
Secondly, they have a lemur walk with several different species. We were lucky enough to catch one of the staff in there for a chat about these cheeky chaps, and I made a very special friend who clinged to my foot… and then tried to wee on it. Lovely.
They also had a monkey walk through area which was fab to see them leaping about over our heads, and the boyfriend very nearly had a career change to zoo keeper after spending so long in this section!
This was a seriously good find and not too expensive for a day out. We had lunch at the small mexican stall and sat outside in their garden area to munch on a very nice if very greasy chicke burrito and veggie chilli nachos. However, the gift shop is very expensive so watch out for that one as not everything is individually priced and could cause a bit of embarrassment at the till when you do the very Yorkshire ‘how much??’