Travelling with kids (and babies)
My love for animals did not fade after childhood and I did surprise few of my friends in our childless young and wild days when I dragged them to Cotswold Wildlife Park or when I spent 2 weeks volunteering with koalas and kangaroos. So now with little people around, I am enjoying even more a day out in a safari park.
We started Woburn with the safari drive and have been very lucky to see few giraffes next to our car. The monkeys jumping around thrilled our toddler, from his perspective one of the highlights of our trip. Both the giraffes (Rotschild breed and critically endangered) and the cheeky monkeys (foraging, climbing, playing and jumping on cars) belong to the African landscapes; and our morning at Woburn came close to our Kenyan safaris.
The kingdom of carnivores treated us royally as well, with bears passing next to our car. The lions rested together on top of a hill and eventually one decided to cross in front of us. All very exciting and me asking numerous times if all windows are blocked to make sure our toddler does not want to cuddle or feed the wrong beast.
A little person checked the map as soon as we entered and pestered us to go with the train. And after spending 2.5 hours in the car (one travelling from London and the other one and a half driving around), we pleased the toddler and caught the first train at 12:30, so some of the animals were seen rather quick: bisons, zebras, wild horses, rhinos and elephants. We found the personnel lovely and helpful whilst access and choice of speed / time to hang around very good, even with our impatient little man.
Lunch at Woburn safari park is served very conveniently next to bouncy castles and slides, so while you order, little (human) monkeys could jump around as they have seen on the safari drive. Nothing too fancy food wise but you could always bring your picnic, plenty of benches and lovely spaces outside by the lake.
After lunch we all took a walk on the wild side. Californian sea lions swimming so fast amazed us all – the pool is very smartly designed so you could see them under water as well.
We also gazed at Humboldt penguins and were delighted by the cheeky squirrel monkeys in their special enclosure – flying and jumping around really fast to quote my son.
The toddler also discovered the indoor play area – the mammoth ark, so good that we needed strategies to get him out.
There’s also a lake to pedal in with swans, a treetop action trail and a go ape activity – planning to go back soon for the first and in couple of years for the latter . All in all a great day out, more interactive than your typical zoo and closer & more convenient than an African safari.
Disclosure: Many thanks to Woburn safari park for my complimentary pass for the purpose of the review. Views, photos and attempts to please toddler, baby and the other grown up (needless to say not as successful as each desired) all mine.