Monday, 27 January 2014

Adventures: Welsh Mountain Zoo

Way back in September, Mark & I went on a very special adventure. An adventure to the Welsh Mountain Zoo. The Welsh
Mountain Zoo with bears!!! This was one of my most favourite days ever, I had the best time and I saw bears in real life for
the first time. I'm already trying to figure out when we can go again! The prices are surprisingly affordable, at just £10.95
for an adult (including Gift Aid). You can also be a zoo keeper for the day... this is definitely going on my wishlist! I'm going
to share some (I took so many!) of my photos with you now and even a couple of videos too.

We set off early in the morning with blue skies above, and the promise of rain later in the day. I left my hair in it's natural state because I was well aware that being on a mountain, the zoo was likely to be windy. We got excited at each brown tourist sign we saw, and excited at seeing the sea! It was an interesting journey once we got into Wales, driving through tiny, narrow country lanes and finding the zoo nestled in the woods, perfect.

Hello handsome! The first thing we saw after parking the car were these lovely camels! They were friendly enough to come over and say hello. And oh my, it was windy and it was cold! If you're planning a visit, wrap up with plenty of layers.

The grounds of the zoo are very well maintained, and it's so beautiful it doesn't feel like you're in a zoo at all. The enclosures fit into the natural surroundings with ease, and it just kind of feels like you've stumbled into a magic forest. Be sure to wear sensible footwear, as some of the ground is bumpy and there were plenty of pinecones at this time of year!

The penguin parade! These sweet little penguins were so lovely, and they were so wonderful to watch. Definitely make time for this during your visit, kids (and adults!) will love it. The view from here is stunning too.

The sea lions! We got splashed a few times when we got close to the barrier by the pool, they're very playful and friendly animals! The sea lion feeding and training runs at several times throughout the day.

One very beautiful and somewhat chilled out Sumatran tiger. He was just soaking up some afternoon sunshine, lazily lifting his tail occasionally. He was really a sight to behold, and we would love to see him again on a day when he's feeling more energetic!

If you do visit, you can see exactly what I meant with the forest and the naturalness of it all when you visit the red squirrel enclosure and where it's situated. Look at the little robin sat observing us! These little squirrels were so funny, it took us a few minutes standing before we found them and they came out to play. Look at the video - he looks like he's dancing!

The red pandas were one of my favourite animals at the zoo, they're just fascinating and so, so cute! And handily, right after we saw them we spotted the sign for the bears! We're going on a bear hunt..! And it really was a hunt, because for us they weren't that easy to find (we kept going in circles!).

Let's just take a moment to appreciate how gorgeous and absolutely breathtaking this brown lady bear is, ahh. My absolute favourite part of the whole visit, I could have watched her for hours. There are 3 brown bears at WMZ in total, but the other two were sleeping in their cave of sorts (I don't blame them, it was freezing!). She was fascinating and I can't wait to go back and visit the bears again. Hopefully next time, when the weather is a little bit warmer, they will be more playful and less sleepy!

Once we'd visited the beautiful bears, we decided to stop off for lunch in Cafe Safari. It has a balcony outside that overlooks the tiger's enclosure, and again the view from there takes your breath away. It's a cosy feels-like-you're-at-home kind of cafe, and we both ordered hot food (chips and beans, mmm!). The portions were huge and great value for money.
After lunch, we visited the monkeys and the meerkats. We did go to see the chimp encounter show and it was very funny, the lady doing it was very good! This little monkey was sitting happily in the warm, but on our way back past he was eating his lunch! The meerkats were so funny, exactly how you imagine them to be. They were friendly and inquisitive too, coming up to the glass to see us.

For our last stop of the day, we went to see the penguin walk one more time (eek!) and then went to say goodbye to the bears. Not only did it rain, but it poured! We ran as fast as our little legs could carry us through the pouring rain to see my beloved bears one more time. And then one more time again! The zoo pretty much emptied as soon as the rain had started, but it didn't put us off. We said our goodbyes (for now!) to the bears, and went to the shop to buy keyrings and a bookmark before we set off for home, feeling very happy (and a little bit soggy!) after the most wonderful day.

Have you ever been to this zoo? Where is your favourite zoo?

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  1. Oh my gosh, your so brave to stand next to that camel :D I love the penguins though! I'd love to visit more places like this, I've only been to the west midlands safari park so far x

  2. Eeep I want to go! All the best zoos are in Wales, are they not? I think I need to holiday in Wales this summer, there's so much to see and do!

    Tara xo

  3. I always love going to the zoo and I want to go there! xx

  4. The red pandas are my all time favourite thing to see at the zoo. My uncle adopted me some in Edinburgh zoo and they were so cute! You are lucky to see them, my childhood is tainted with memories of going to the zoo to see, what I considered my personal pets, for them to be sleeping. Thanks so much for sharing these personal pictures, you two are my favourite couple, you are such cuties.

    P.S. You are the best person for wearing an outfit to match your environment. Hat with bear ears to see some bears! Next time you go I am coming with my red panda ears!

    Emma x

  5. Loved this post Hannah! I'm so happy you got to see a real life bear haha. I'm so craving a trip to a farm or zoo now, feels like it's been ages since I've seen some animals properly (bar my dawg) I really want to go to an alpaca farm in the summer, I just love them and I have little cousins to take along with me so I won't be a weirdo going to see them alone haha. I love that you wore your bear hat! xxx

  6. Looks like such a fun day out! Love the cute meerkats and the bears...I love going to the zoo or even just a farm with unusual breed chickens - I'm not fussy! Any animals will do as long as they are super cute, it's nice if you get to pet them as well. I even went to a Welsh dinosaur park/petting zoo last year and loved it!! Next up I would love to go to Edinburgh zoo and see the pandas. Great post xx

    p.s. check out my blog giveaway!

  7. Yay, what a super exciting adventure!! I love taking day trips like this. You definitely look like you had an amazing time! I'm so happy for you that you finally got to see a bear in real life! :) I've only ever seen a polar bear.I absolutely love that you added the video clips, I might have to steal that idea, as I have many video clips of the deer around here and of course, Djinn Djinn and other nature-y things. It adds a special touch and I so loved hearing the lady with the seals speak with her wonderful accent! It doesn't seem as if it'd be super cold there since the sun is shining but I guess you just can't tell until you're actually there. Every animal is so, so unique- it's almost hard to choose a favorite. Lions and tigers and bears, oh my! hehe xxx


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