Britain’s top 10 zoos and wildlife parks

Calling all animal lovers and adventure seekers! Let your inner zoologist go wild with a roar-some day out.

Forget trekking across the globe – Britain is bursting with brilliant zoos and wildlife parks, just waiting to be explored.

So ditch the telly, grab your sense of wonder, and get ready to meet some incredible creatures. From playful penguins to majestic monkeys, our list of Britain’s top 10 zoos and wildlife parks has something for everyone.

1. Blackpool Zoo

britains top zoos and wildlife parks

Blackpool is renowned for its beautiful sandy beach, traditional resort feel and of course its illuminations. But away from the beach, there’s a whole collection of animals waiting to be discovered at Blackpool Zoo. Head up to Giraffe Heights and see what the world is like for the world’s tallest living animal, or immerse yourself in all things avian at World of Wings – a walk-through aviary where you can meet all kinds of fascinating birds.

There’s also the Children’s Farm with all the farm favourites for the little ones, and there’s Gorilla Mountain and Orangutan Outlook where you can meet some of the cheeky primate families.

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2. London Zoo

Top 10 zoos and wildlife parks in BritainLondon Zoo is an absolute must-visit if you’re staying at any of our London Hotels. This conservation centre spans 36 acres and houses over 650 species – you could easily spend a week here! Highlights include the lion and penguin feeding, as well as the brand new Giraffe Experience and Tiger Territory.

If you just love zoos, then why not become a keeper for the day or book your children on to the junior zoo academy. A once-in-a-lifetime experience!

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3. Chester Zoo

britains top zoos and wildlife parksChester Zoo is one of the biggest zoos in Britain and is home to over 20,000 animals for you to peek at. As an active conservation site, Chester Zoo is home to a group of Black Rhinos which are classed as critically endangered – not to be missed!

Beat the winter cold in the Tropical Realm and get up close with Crocodiles, Galapagos Tortoises and many species of rare birds. Check the animals out online on the Chester Zoo social media pages and see what they’re up to.

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4. Longleat Safari Park

britains top zoos and wildlife parksLongleat is one of the top Safari and Adventure Parks in the UK and a great day out for all the family. Stay at our nearby hotel for easy access to this drive-through adventure which will transport you to another country, as you get up close to zebras, rhinos, lions and cheeky monkeys.

For the ultimate wildlife experience hope on the Safari Bus Tour to discover a world of exotic animals accompanied by your very own tour guide.

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5. Edinburgh Zoo

Top 6 zoos and wildlife parks in BritainWhen staying in Edinburgh be sure to visit the magnificent Edinburgh Zoo which is over 100 years old! If cuddly animals are your thing then meeting Tanami, Inala and Kalari, Britain’s only Queensland Koalas, will leave you squealing with delight. Other popular animals include the beautiful Malayan Sun Bears and the UK’s only Pandas.

But you’d better visit soon as after calling Edinburgh Zoo home for over a decade, the Pandas are returning to China towards the end of 2023!

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6. Drusillas Park

britains top zoos and wildlife parksWhen staying in Sussex be sure to visit Drusillas Park. Widely known as the best small zoo in Europe, Drusillas Park offers a fun-tastic day out that includes animals, adventure play and rides! With the zoo at the heart of Drusillas, you’ll come face to face with hundreds of exotic animals, from monkeys and meerkats to penguins and pandas, and be sure not to miss the walk-through enclosures – Lemurland and Lory Landing.

But the animals are only half the fun! Your little monkeys will adore themed adventure play areas including Jurassic Jungle and Get Wet! – the ultimate splash pad experience.

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7. Blair Drummond Safari

britains top zoos and wildlife parksLocated in Stirling, less than an hour’s drive from Glasgow and Edinburgh, Blair Drummond Safari and Adventure Park offers fun-filled animal action for all the family. Embark on a thrilling safari experience, stopping off around the park to see a variety of wildlife. From gentle giants to curious cats, you’ll be roaring with delight at all of the marvellous sights.

When the journey ends, you can get up close and personal with the many species on show and discover more with informative talks and demonstrations throughout the day. Be sure to hop aboard the boat to Chimp Island and marvel at the mischievous primates as they monkey around throughout the day. With many different areas to explore and lots of wildlife to see, you’re guaranteed entertainment for all ages. 

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8. Bristol Zoo

britains top zoos and wildlife parks

The original Bristol Zoo sadly closed in 2022, but their work has continued a short distance away at Wild Place Project. Wild Place Project is an entertaining destination for families that offers opportunities for outdoor exploration, play and education. Visitors can encounter extraordinary creatures from various parts of the globe, such as playful lemurs from Madagascar and majestic European brown bears.

Additionally, each visit contributes to the zoo’s charity efforts towards wildlife conservation.

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9. Marwell Zoo

britains top zoos and wildlife parks

If you’re looking for some family fun in Hampshire, Marwell Zoo is the perfect place to visit- and they’re ‘otterly’ excited to welcome you! From the very popular penguins, gibbons and giraffes, to the rarer sightings of endangered Amur tigers, snow leopards and white rhinos, there’s a lot to get excited about.

As well as the park’s 140 species, there are 5 adventure playgrounds so the kids can unleash their wild side, and over 140 acres of parkland perfect for getting closer to the natural world with the animals or even for enjoying a sunny family picnic.

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10. Whipsnade Zoo

britains top zoos and wildlife parks

Prepare yourself for a day of fun and discovery at Whipsnade, officially the UK’s largest zoo. There are over 3,500 animals across its 600 acres including brown bears, Amur tigers and penguins among more endangered species such as its large group of Asian elephants.

When you’re not wandering around admiring the animals, there are plenty of outdoor play areas and exhibits to marvel at and spectacular Chilterns scenery to enjoy.

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