Travel | Longleat Safari Park

Monday, 1 December 2014

I'm pretty sure that I have posted about a day out to Longleat Safari Park before, but Dan & I went again on Saturday and it was just so amazing that I couldn't help but write another post!

Longleat has to be my favourite park (of all the ones I've visited, anyway!). There is just so much to do and I really love how interactive it is. This sounds like something that would make it great for children, which it undoubtedly is, but its also so much fun for us 'grown ups' too. It takes away the whole 'zoo' feeling where you just wander round looking through bars and glass at various animals and makes it feel as though you have been transported into the heart of the safari where you can explore and get stuck right in with everything on offer.

It is quite a long journey to Longleat from our home, 2 hours in fact. But this was made easier by the yummy homemade pastries we packed and the beautiful countryside that we drove through.
It is a long way but it is worth every minute because as you drive though that grand entrance, the feeling of excitment sure takes away the feeling of a numb bum!

We started the day by visiting the 'safari' portion of the park. This is the part where you stay in your car and drive round designated enclosures, so you can really get up close and personal with some of the worlds most iconic animals! You are given an adorable CD to play in your car, which talks and teaches you all about the animals as you drive round - what a brilliant idea.
As we expected, some of the animals were away sleeping as they are not accustomed to the cold winter weather, but this was no biggie - there were still a thousand and one things to see and, on such a clear day, we had a perfect view.

We saw a herd of absolutely gorgeous fallow deer lying in the morning sun and we even saw some young stag's play fighting, we were so close that you could even hear their antlers butting together. The surroundings were so peaceful and the view was just beautiful. We spotted a few zebra grazing on the grounds and they were such a treat to see up close - their coat is amazing!
Next we ventured into my most favourite enclosures - the big cats! Big cats are my absolute favourite animals. They are elegant, they are wild, they are stealthy and they are so so beautiful, so to be this close was a dream for me.
First we saw a pride of beautiful tigers. At first I thought the tigers were hiding in the warmth but then Dan told me to look out of my passenger window, so I did, and there was a the most beautiful tiger walking alongside me so stealthy, getting ready to pounce on its brother! I was so desperate to put the window down and see what its thick fur felt like, but I vale my hand too much, so I decided against it ;)
We drove on through to the second of two prides of lions, and they did not disappoint. We first saw them from a distance, eating some grass - something I thought only smaller and domestic cats did. But, then, one of the females spotted something in the distance and they came racing toward us. Once again, one stopped dead at my window, giving me the perfect view of its shiny eyes, long whiskers and those impressive teeth! It was amazing!
We carried on though and came to the Cheetah enclosure and, although we did not see them running anywhere, they were so beautiful. I love their coat and their muscular form is so streamlined and beautiful to see so close up. I wish we could have stayed all day!

After an exciting 2 hour safari drive, we parked up and decided to get some food in one of Longleat's own restaurants. These were, as expected for any attraction, quite costly, but the food was so delicious, so we didn't mind too much! We ate in an Italian style eaterie and chose a yummy pizza and the best wedges ever (which I could easily eat again now looking at that picture!). The restaurant was clean and tidy, family friendly and had a great choice of food.
There were lots of little kiosks situated around the park, selling everything from sweets and popcorn, to ice cream & donuts, to hotdogs & burgers. So, even if you prefer a  more informal lunch there was something for you too.

After stuffing our faces we wanted to see some more animals so we visited a cute litle interactive section of the park where we saw this amazing ant-eater (which was masssssivveeee!) amongst other things.
We got to walk around the Meerkat enclosure which was so cute. The meerkats are so inquisitive and they seemed to have a great time treading on and running over my boots - leaving some adorable footprints on them!
We got to touch some stingrays too, which was such fun. Last time we visited Longleat the stingrays were still in their eggs waiting to hatch, so seeing them this time was so great! They were so elegant and mesmerising and they felt all smooth, although I couldn't touch them for too long as their tank was absolutely freezing - just how they like it. There was a wonderful park worker around the stingray tank who knew so much about them, it was lovely to listen to him and learn all about them!
We visited Dan's favourite animal - the penguins! In this enclosure you were also allowed to walk through so we got to see the penguins as close as can be!
We stopped at a small aviary where you could buy little pots of bird food and walk through. The birds loved it and landed all over you to eat the food in the cup - Dan definitely made a few friends in this enclosure haha!

We had a look around the beautiful Longleat house. Only certain areas of it are open but they are definitely worth seeing.
We saw the kitchen, decorated with copper pots and cookware, as well as servant bells and original ovens and fittings, and we saw the amazing grounds where every inch of the grass is mowed to perfection and there are flower displays and even a secret garden too!

The day we visited was the first day of Lonlgeat's 'festival of lights'. This was a really good thing to see. As well as being decorated for Christmas there were amazing Chinese lanterns and sculptures around, and even a Chinese acrobatic show to be seen.
The show was fantastic and I loved it when the sun had set and all of the lights were turned on. There were elephants and pandas and floral displays which all lit up, and there was even a massive dragon constructed from over 15,000 pieces of porcelain which lit up and and even blew smoke!

Longleat really is a brilliant day out - and not just for families, there is always so much going on and I cant wait to go again! You can find out more on their official website and you can even get discount on your tickets when bought on line!

*These photos are all my own!*


  1. Sounds like an amazing time! Xx

    1. Its so Lovely! Days out seeing the animals are always so exciting, aren't they?! <3

  2. It sounds like you had a great time, I would love to have a place like that to visit! We've got some nice zoos around here, and although you can walk through some parts, there's nothing anything like what you got to experience! This was so awesome to read; hopefully one day I'll get to visit.

    Sarah xo
    Diary of a Beauty Padawan