In my 24 years I’ve ventured far and wide to many a zoo because I just love animals. As a little disclaimer, I’m not going to get into the ethics of zoos, I’m just going to say that I think they’re great as a way to preserve species as long as the zoo is treating the animal appropriately.
Also having written this post, I’m thinking I might make this into a bit of a series because I really struggled to choose my top 5!
Yorkshire Wildlife Park, Doncaster, England
When I first went to Yorkshire Wildlife Park I was crossing my fingers that I wasn’t going to be disappointed. I mean, it’s in Doncaster, which isn’t exactly the most exciting place in the country so I didn’t have high hopes.
I visited just after the zoo had finished building its Polar Bear enclosure, which not only is incredible because POLAR BEARS but also it’s one of the biggest animal enclosures that I’ve ever seen at any zoo. And the polar bears looks really happy so that’s a big plus too.
Yorkshire Wildlife Park has every animal you could dream of seeing, and it even has a little Wallaby walkthrough so you can pet them!
This is hands down one of the best things to do in Yorkshire so I wholly recommend it.
Dublin Zoo, Phoenix Park, Dublin, Ireland
The Zoo is situated in Phoenix Park in Dublin. If you’re going to Dublin then the zoo probably isn’t on your list of things to do but change that list and stick it on there!
We went for opening time (obviously!) and there were hardly any people there yet so it sort of felt like we’d got a zoo to ourselves, which is the dream really, isn’t it?
If you like elephants, you won’t be disappointed here, because there are so many to see, as well as a plain of giraffes and rhinos. It’s perfect for up close shots of animals if that’s your thing (it’s mine!).
Koelner Zoo, Cologne, Germany
Entry: €19,50 or €14,50 for students.
Possibly my favourite zoo on the list. Unless you’re a zoo fanatic you might not even know that Cologne has a zoo but it does and as someone who lived in the area for 6 months, believe me when I say this zoo is great. I think I visited 3 times in the 6 months I lived nearby.
The zoo has a good sized aquarium as well as so many animals in really big enclosures! It’s one of the oldest zoos in the world so it has a really cool history behind it which you can read about at the zoo.
Again, there are elephants so I’m totally sold on this one.
So if you’re wandering Cologne at any time in the near future put this on your to do list!
Tierpark Aachen, Aachen, Germany
Aachen like Cologne, is situated in North Rhein Westphalia in Germany, so again if you’re in the region, this is a definite to do!
Tierpark Aachen isn’t as big as some of the other zoos on the list but it does have a unique draw! A goat play pen so you can get in and cuddle some goats! Yes I’m serious. I never knew I liked goats until I got to pat a pregnant goat mummy or chase a little baby goat around its pen.
Burger’s Zoo, Arnhem, The Netherlands
Burger’s Zoo is situated in Arnhem in The Netherlands. It’s a little pricey but so worth it because it’s such a huge zoo and they have penguins and elephants and rhino’s and leopards. You’ll definitely get your 10,000 steps in!
It also has an aquarium and it’s a really good use of a nice day in The Netherlands because let’s face it you’re never that far away from anywhere when you’re in Holland!
Where are your favourite zoos? Have you visited of my favourites? Let me know in the comments!