Disclaimer: Please note this might be my worst post to date. I started writing it on 5th September (yes, I know) and it’s now 11th October and I’ve decided enough is enough and just to hit publish. Apparently when you move house it’s impossible to push out blog posts. Here goes…
As part of Great Granny’s birthday present we’d said we would take her on a day out to Yorkshire Wildlife Park (with PG in tow, of course!). She loves giraffes and they’ve got four, it’s only about 50 minutes away from where we live so happy days!
We’d had a date in the diary for a while given everyone seems so damn busy these days (mainly us) and finding free Saturday’s is a bit of a nightmare. Saturday came (that’s a few Saturday’s ago now!) and we’d checked the weather on the Friday and decided we needed to get there for opening to miss most of the typical British summery weather (ie rain).
The park, located just south of Doncaster off the M18, opens at 10am in Summer. Google reckons it takes 2.5 to 3 hours to get round and with rain forecast from about 12 noon, we either needed to walk quickly (difficult with an 8 month old, and 88 year old with a knackered knee), or take our coats – which we did. We arrived just after 10 and were pretty surprised at the size of the place. The road to the free large car park seems to last forever which gives a clue as to how big the park itself is once inside.
Yorkshire Wildlife Park isn’t the cheapest day out (I’m not saying it’s too expensive either, just for the record), so you need to make sure you’re going to get plenty out of it. You can save a few pounds booking your tickets online, but you need to prebook them in advance as you can’t book them on the day you want to visit online. As I write this, adults are £16.50 on the gate or £15.50 online, kids aged 3-15 are £13.50 on the gate or £12.50 online, and kids under 2 are free (hurray!) .There’s also various prices for disabled visitors, and senior citizens/students etc. Great Granny took great delight in telling the girl at the gate how old she was, and that she could still trot round at 88. If you’re likely to make a habit of visiting the park, it might make more sense to get an annual pass, so be sure to check this option out.
I drew the “carry the baby in the carrier” straw so after the hassle attaching her to me so she couldn’t fall out (nearly resulting in me being chopped in half it was that tight), off we trotted (the Park Map was semi useful here. I ended up in charge but couldn’t really be arsed navigating so we just walked round). First impressions are always important and me and Wifey both commented on how well kept the park is. It’s very tidy, no litter, and obviously well cared for by their dedicated team.
First stop, Baboons! PG’s little face lit up instantly. She loves animals, even ones with big red butts. Even the two that started bonking each other right in front of us (yeh thanks Boris Baboon, just what we wanted to see). Great Granny, avert your eyes!
Through a short pleasant woodland trail we ended up at Lemur Woods. This is a cool place, a caged enclosure you can walk around in amongst the lemurs, fascinating creatures of incredible agility and speed, jumping high in the tree tops. I was glad there were a couple on the ground to look at as PG’s eyes aren’t quite up to looking 10 feet up.
At this point, typically it started to rain. Great, I thought. We’re going to get p*ss wet through and can’t walk too fast with
hop a long an 88 year old. It turned out not to be that bad, although some of the animals weren’t very forthcoming in saying hello so we’ll definitely be back on a nicer day. I won’t bore you with the details of every animal we saw, I’m sure most of you reading have seen a tiger, giraffe, ostrich, zebra etc before. All in all we spent just under three hours at the park and did enjoy ourselves despite the weather. We’d taken a picnic and there’s a massive open tee-pee style tent thing that’s got picnic benches in which is great if you don’t want to have to buy food while you’re out.
Yorkshire Wildlife Park is definitely worth a visit and is a decent day out.
To end, no grannies were harmed during this day out.