6 Safari Parks in the UK to Visit With Your Family

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Photo of Richard Franks
Freelance Travel & Music Writer4 April 2018

Safari parks are a fantastic way to spend a day out with the kids as they allow you to get up close and personal with animals you wouldn’t normally see on this side of the Atlantic. From the likes of Blair Drummond up in Scotland to Port Lympne in Kent, here are some of the best safari parks in the UK to visit with your family, all of which are within easy reach of most major cities.

West Midland Safari Park

Bewdley, UK. 12th July, 2020. After enjoying the welcome attention of returning visitors at West Midland Safari Park following the ease of lockdown restrictions, certain stubborn residents refuse to retire to their quarters at the end of a busy day. This
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Just under an hour’s drive from central Birmingham is West Midland Safari Park – one of the country’s leading safari parks in the UK and one of the best places to get up close to exotic animals. Their Safari Drive-through takes you across the ‘African Plains’ and ‘Wild Asia’ where you and the family can spot zebras, elephants, giraffes, lions, buffalos and so much more. When you’re finished with the drive-through, there are plenty of other discovery trails, fun areas and a theme park on-site to keep the kids entertained.

Woburn Safari Park

Keepers of the Woburn Safari Park feed a group of Eastern mountain Bongo, as they prepare to reopen on Monday 15th for the first time since the lockdown due to the outbreak of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), in Woburn, Britain, June 14, 2020. REUTERS/
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With both a road safari and foot safari at Woburn in Milton Keynes, the kids are sure to be entertained for the day. While you can see the rare continental animals from the comfort of your car, take the foot safari through designated areas featuring meerkats, elephants, sea lions, penguins and so much more. There’s also a play area for the younger kids and the popular high ropes course Go Ape for the teens (and adults who want to monkey around too!).

Knowsley Safari

A giraffe is pictured at the Knowsley Safari Park, as it re-opens following the outbreak of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in Knowsley, Britain June 15, 2020. REUTERS/Jason Cairnduff
© REUTERS/Jason Cairnduff

This Merseyside safari park is sure to be a hit with the entire family. Situated in Knowsley, near St Helens, visitors can experience this safari whether in their own car or by hopping on the park’s Baboon Bus. Away from the normal road and foot safaris that most parks offer, Knowsley also has a wet safari on its boating lake, which you can row around and see all the wildlife that calls it home.

Longleat Safari Park

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More than just a safari park, Longleat is one of the premier visitor attractions in the UK. Famed for its stunning Elizabethan house and grounds – with the biggest maze in the country – Longleat Safari Park is definitely worth the trip to Wiltshire. Proudly the very first drive-through safari park outside of Africa, visitors to Longleat can expect to get up close and personal with some of the most endangered animals in the world.

Blair Drummond Safari Park

Lions on a log climbing frame at Blair Drummond Safari and Wildlife Adventure Park near Stirling in Scotland
© Jonathan Kelly / Alamy Stock Photo

Situated near the central Scottish city of Stirling, Blair Drummond is a 120-acre adventure and safari park packed with activities to keep the whole family busy. With a large drive-through exotic animal reserve, sea lion presentations and bird of prey displays, we guarantee that the kids won’t get bored. For something a little different, take a boat trip to Chimp Island or take on the Flying Fox, a zip wire that goes across the river with the stunning Blair Drummond House as your backdrop.

Port Lympne Reserve

Shot of three lion cubs at Port Lympne Reserve
© Joe Khan-Panni / Alamy Stock Photo

Port Lympne is a conservation charity in Kent dedicated to protecting wildlife with one clear mission: commitment to conservation. At Port Lympne, visitors can explore over 600 acres of parkland and wildlife, with a number of exotic and endangered animals on show, all of which have been rescued to protect the species’ future. A true safari experience, all animals at Port Lympne are in a ‘wild’ environment rather than in viewing areas or cages, giving them the best possible lives before being reintroduced back into the wild. Port Lympne also offers a number of brilliant experiences, including animal encounters, private safaris and keeper days.

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