The UK has some amazing wildlife that we are lucky to have on our doorstep. There are many regions where you can spot deer on early morning walks across the forest, or gaze at foxes in the fields, but it is rare to get up close to more exotic animals. For an experience you won’t forget with animals from across the globe, check out the locations below to visit on your weekend staycation.
The Bee Centre, Samlesbury, Preston
The Bee Centre delivers an award-winning ‘bee experience’, including beekeeping courses and talks that are perfect for businesses, schools, and family groups. The centre works to promote a healthy and biodiverse environment while supporting farms by increasing crop yield through pollination and creating suitable habitats for bees to thrive in.
Here, you can explore and learn about different types of bees, while experiencing training in beekeeping, bee-breeding, and the habitat creation for pollinators. The Bee Centre is also active in raising awareness of the importance of honeybees in supporting our economy and our environment, so it is a must for wildlife lovers who are passionate about sustainability and living more consciously.
Whilst you are at Samlesbury Hall, make sure you have an explore. The hall is wonderful to look round from the Victorian kitchen, schoolroom & the 1950s bedroom, there is plenty to see, along with changing exhibitions in the Long Gallery. There is also a fab play area and places to eat.
Lake District Wildlife Park, Keswick, Cumbria
Take a stroll around this beautiful 24-acre parkland and see over 100 species throughout the wildlife park in the idyllic Lake District. Just outside Keswick, the park provides the opportunity to see both domestic and exotic animals in natural, open enclosures.
Animals at the park range from gibbons to zebras and reptiles, with magical Bird of Prey flying displays each day, so there is something for everyone to discover here. The park is passionate about emphasising their work on conservation and educating visitors on the preservation of the animals and their welfare.
If you’re planning a staycation in the beautiful Cumbrian Lakes, you’ll be spoilt for choice with the Lake District cottages in the region, with cosy properties just a few minutes away from the wildlife park in Keswick that sleep up to six guests with both traditional and modern interiors to suit all visitors looking to stay here.
Birdworld, Farnham, Surrey
Birdworld is the United Kingdom’s largest bird park, covering 26 acres in the East Hampshire district. Here, you can explore the beautiful aviaries and landscaped gardens, with over 1,000 birds and 180 species here from all around the world. Visitors are encouraged to get hands-on and take part in educational feeding sessions throughout the day before discovering the other popular exhibits in the park, such as Underwater World and The Jenny Wren Farm, that prove to be a big hit with all who visit.
Monkey World Ape Rescue Centre, Longhorns, Wareham, Dorset
Monkey World is a 65-acre sanctuary that is home to the largest group of chimpanzees outside of Africa, living in four different social groups. There are 24 species of monkeys and prosimians at the park where these beautiful and intelligent creatures can be observed in their home, from the power struggles in the chimpanzee troops to introducing baby orang-utans to the rest of the nursery group.
Many of the monkeys here have been rescued from the black market pet trade, laboratories, and from abuse as tourist photographer props, so the care of the animals is of the utmost importance to the staff and doctors at the rescue centre. The aim of the centre is to give the animals as natural an environment as possible so that they have a secure and peaceful place to live.
Visitors can experience tours, talks, and even birthday parties, accommodation, and weddings within the centre making it a fun and humbling experience to be within the home of these animals.
These wildlife hotspots are just a few of the stunning wildlife locations within the UK, with these places offering amazing support and much-needed attention to the care of their animals with the help of visitor donations and returning tourism.