Last weekend we had a family afternoon out to Chester Zoo, courtesy of Superbreak. We left the rainy West Midlands for a few hours to take Little Mr to visit the Zoo for the first time. Hubby and I had previously visited Chester Zoo a few years ago and we absolutely loved it so really wanted to take Little Mr along to see the animals for the first time.
We arrived at the Zoo just before 1pm and then realised that the Zoo closed at 4:30pm due to the time of year so had a quick discussion about what we really wanted to see and a shortlist was made up.
We headed for the Tsavo Black Rhino Reserve first as I think they are the most amazing species. After walking around the reserve for a couple of minutes we spotted some Meerkats so went to have a look. Little Mr was able to see them as the glass to see through into the enclosure was at his height so he could look through. I was hoping the rest of the zoo would be as child friendly so it was a good start. Next we wondered around to the Rhino enclosure and there was a couple of Rhinos in their eating some lunch. We showed Little Mr the rhinos but he wasn’t really that bothered (I guess at 8 months old unless it sings, lights up or dances you haven’t really got much hope of them paying any interest) Still, I enjoyed reading all about them and taking in their natural beauty.
We then walked anti-clockwise round the Zoo taking in more of the magnificent animals roaming free in their enclosures. We saw Painted Dogs, Zebra, Monkeys, Camels, Chimpanzees, Elephants and Giraffe.
I absolutely adore Giraffe, they are the most amazing creatures with their long gangly legs and long necks. The patterns on their skin is amazing. Definitely natural beauty at its best. We watched on as the Zoo staff changed over the food for the giraffe and they feed so silently happily munching on a strung up branches of tree. It was marvellous to watch. Little Mr watched with interest as they towered above him. It must be pretty amazing as a baby to watch these huge creatures above your head whilst you’re in your pushchair.
We then went to visit the monkey enclosure and it was a fabulous sight. It was lunchtime and a zoo keeper had managed to encapsulate all the monkeys into one area of their cage whilst she put out their fresh feed. They all looked so excited and it reminded us both of the kids at school waiting for the canteen to open. It was brilliant. The zoo keeper opened up the area to the main enclosure and it was a fantastic sight. All the monkeys charged into the pen and dived onto the food. A couple of the cleverer monkeys dashed over to the pumpkins and sat on them, claiming their meal right there. It was fascinating to watch and even Little Mr looked interested as he watched all the monkeys run about.
We then headed over Elephant Bridge to take in the sight of the most glorious of any Zoo creatures, the mighty Elephant. There were quite a few of them, they were all feeding in one area of their enclosure so we got a brilliant view of them. We also got front row seats to the opening of one of the elephants bladders and back passage which was quite a sight!
The Zoo, in my opinion, is still a little too old for an 8 month old baby. He took in most of the sights but probably wont remember seeing any of the animals or recall what they were. We wanted to take him as part of a fun filled family day out and it was certainly that as both hubby and I enjoyed it. It bought back some brilliant memories and we made plans to bring Little Mr back in years to come when he’s a bit older and can appreciate these amazing creatures. All we can hope is that some of them aren’t extinct by then so hopefully the amazing work that the Zoo does can ensure this won’t happen and we can continue to see them in all their glory.
The child friendly facilities were noted as we walked around the park, including baby change facilities and buggies to hire for the afternoon. We saw lots of toddlers enjoying a ride from Mum and Dad in the buggies so they looked like a great hire.
We headed home after a battle around the shop to get Little Mr a keepsake from the afternoon, a cuddly elephant which is now keeping guard in his nursery as a reminder of a lovely family afternoon out.
We were gifted the tickets to visit the Zoo but the entry fee would of cost us £20 each and Little Mr was free (children aged 2 and under are free to get in). In my opinion, all though it is a lot of money, it goes towards the upkeep and preservation of keeping these beautiful animals alive and well. You could spend the whole day at the Zoo and take your own picnic so it would be a fantastic day for the whole family, something of which I hope we can do in years to come.
With thanks to Superbreak for our tickets to visit Chester Zoo, we had a great afternoon and will definitely be back.