Shaniah is climbing some rocks.

Cotswold Wildlife Park

We come here at least once each year, although with it being so close to where we live I am surprised that we don’t visit Cotswold wildlife park more regularly.

It has become a sort of tradition to visit on a may bank holiday. Cotswold wildlife park is somewhere that holds fond memories for me. We came here quite a lot while I was growing up. This place is and has always been one of my nan’s favourite places to visit, and we often went there for her birthday.

Shaniah is sat on the micro trike as we walk around Cotswold Wildlife Park's grounds.

Getting into the car park can be very slow during peak season although, once you’re in everyone is all spread out over the many acres of land that there is no feeling of crowdedness.

Cotswold wildlife park really does make for a wonderful day out. Despite what a lot of people say, I really do feel that it is great value for money. Entry costs £16 per adult and a little over £10 for children aged three and over. However, if you’re planning in advance you can order your tickets online up to midnight the day before, and save yourself a good few pounds on each ticket. Online ticket orders are valid for one month.

Arrival.

Getting to Cotswold Wildlife Park was easy enough, the park is very well signposted, and although like I mentioned earlier, there is a queue, the queue does go down fairly quickly, it is just because people are paying for tickets.

Parking is easy enough. There is disabled parking on tarmac and additional parking for other visitors. Cotswold Wildlife Park has the option for you to return to your car at any point during your day and as many times as you like, there is also nice greenery right beside the car park where you can set up your picnic beside the Camels and watch the parks train drive on by.

What we got up to.

Two penguins are led on the gravel while one peaks through its little cave.

Our first stop (after the toilets) was, of course, the penguins. We all love penguins and it has got to be my favourite part of the park – their waddle though! Shaniah had great fun giggling at them waddling around before heading off to find the Meerkats!

Shaniah has found a new love of Meerkats thanks to a certain advert and to see some in real life totally blew her mind. Isn’t that what these animal parks are for? We then moved on to the Prairie dogs where Shaniah was adamant that they were the biggest gerbils she has ever seen. Her animal knowledge clearly requires some work!

A prairie dog is led on a log in its enclosure as people look on.

Next up, it was onto the Otters. We were rather unlucky in the fact that we only saw one and that one wasn’t at all interested in having its photo taken by us. Oh well, on to the Tropical House which amongst other animals, is home to the Sloth. Oh my word, the sloth is beautiful! Albeit a little inactive but sloths tend to sleep for around 15 hours a day so we weren’t expecting him to be showcasing some ‘Greatest Showman’ moves from the branches.

We walked for a little bit to find the monkeys. I love the monkeys, they are such great animals – their personalities are even more awesome. After passing through the children’s play park we headed down towards the Children’s Farmyard. Home to the pigs, horses and not forgetting the goats. Shaniah and the goats instantly grew a bond. With a little encouragement, Shaniah was letting one of the eat grass out of her hands.

Shaniah has her hand out flat while a goat eats grass from it.

Needless to say, we spent a good half an hour here whilst she played with her new found friend. Afterwards, we headed for the barn which had chickens, rabbits and guinea pigs although I will admit, all Shaniah was really interested in was going back to see the goats.

Shaniah is stroking the head of a miniature pony.

It was feeding time at the flamingo/bird part of the park and we managed to get there just in time to get a good view. Shaniah found it rather hilarious that the woman was throwing the fish and the pelicans were catching it in their rather large beaks.

a pelican stood on the rockery.

On our quest to find a nice spot to eat our lunch we found zebras, giraffes and many other animals before settling down to eat on the picnic area in front of the lion enclosure. It was a truly surreal moment. Every now and then the Lion would let out a massive roar and although it was a little unnerving for Shaniah, it really was epic.

A lion stands guard on a grassy mound.

We usually eat at the restaurant but with it being a bank holiday and the restaurant being as popular as it is, we knew that we wouldn’t stand a chance of getting a meal from there. Thankfully the weather was amazing and obviously, the picnic beside the lion enclosure was a success!

We walked slowly back to the children’s play park, where we spent a good few minutes before heading home.

Shaniah is playing on the slide in the children's park.

Like the many visits before, this was an unforgettable day. No matter how many times you come here each trip is different and like us, you will notice that you didn’t see all of the residences of the park! Maybe another trip is on the cards?

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