Ethical Travel is a hot topic at the moment. Mainly due to a rise in animals being used to draw in the unwitting travellers; From the Whale Sharks of Donsol; to the endless list of Elephant ‘sanctuaries’ across South East Asia. It’s hard to know what places really do have the animals best interests at heart. Here is a list of our favourite Zoos in England that do their absolute best for the animals and ensuring their happiness and conservation remains at the top of the zoo’s priorities:
London is without a doubt one of the best zoos in the UK and despite being so close to the City centre it offers one of the best conservation experiences you could ask for. The habitats here are huge and kept as close to natural as possible. Kangaroos have access to large sweeping sandy plains; The Tigers are able to hide in long shrubbery and grasslands. They also do a lot of conservation for the local wildlife too; Currently tracking the numbers and progress of the Thames Marine Mammals to ensure they remain safe. Adult prices start at £24.30 so we highly recommend you pack a picnic and make a day of it.
Woburn offers a slightly different insight into the animals lives by keeping you in the cages. Stay in your car, drive through the wild exhibits and watch the animals display their natural behaviour almost completely free of walls. From bears and Lions to Rhino and Giraffe there’s plenty for everyone. They have an extensive breeding programme to try to keep these amazing creatures numbers up. They also support programmes such as the Amur Leopard Allegiance and the International Elephant Foundation. For an online ticket price of £21.99(adult) and £14.99(child) it may seem like a pricey day but you can go around as many times as you like to really make the most of it – Why not be brave and go through the Monkey enclosure and see what mischief they’re getting up to (bypass route is available)
Monkey World is the conservation centre featured on the popular TV programme Monkey Life so if you’re familiar with that you know how much hard work goes into rescuing and conserving the many species they house. Although not technically a zoo, this centre is definitely worth a visit to help support the global mission that Monkey World is on. Primates from all across the globe end up here after being rescued from the illegal pet trade, animal testing labs and poachers. A day visit here will cost you £12 per adult but they also accept donations, and any purchase made in the gift shop goes towards helping the centre too.
Yorkshire Wildlife Park
I have watched this place grow from a little farm with a few rescue Zebra to the large education zoo that it is now. This is possibly the smallest zoo in the UK but it boasts one of the world’s largest Polar Bear Reserves – home to Nobby, Nissan, Pixel and Victor; Four males from all over the world who are hoped to become a part of a breeding programme in an aim to raise the numbers of these majestic creatures. Once you’ve taken in the beauty of these laid back bears there is plenty more to see, 4 prides of lions live here too as well as Lemur, Giraffe, Amur Leopards, Tigers and plenty more. Adult tickets are £16 and you’ll find several eateries and rest stops planted across the grounds so no need for a picnic.
Chester’s main aim is to educate. Here they offer huge discounts for schools, as well as workshops to help start the learning early. On top of this, they also run global charities supporting animals in Africa, Asia and even in Latin America to name a few. With over 500 animals to admire you really do need a full day to fully explore the vast habitats, it has to offer. Our highlights though were the Andean Bears, the North African Cheetah and the Giant Otters. Adult prices here are £24 but considering the size of the place, and the huge effort they put into helping animals across the world – the high price is definitely worth it.
All in all, I think the UK has a great selection of zoo’s, all of which do a great job to help save and conserve the animals that share our earth… these are just our 5 favourites! Have you been to any of these? what did you think – let us know, we’d love to hear from you!!
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