Today we were lucky enough to head to Howletts Wild Animal Park Near Canterbury in Kent, Howlett’s is Kent’s original Wild Animal Park having opened in 1975.
Once in the park it is clear to see that conservation underpins everything Howletts do. They work closely with the Aspinall Foundation, A conservation charity leading the way in the reintroduction of captive-bred animals back into the wild. Wherever possible they aim to return animals born at Howletts back to protected areas of their natural habitat , working with the Aspinall Foundation their Back to the Wild initiative has already seen the return of black rhino to Tanzania, Western Lowland Gorillas to Africa, Primates to Indonesia, European Bison to Romania and Spain and Clouded Leopards to Cambodia.
In the past few years they have released 8 black rhino, 49 Javan Langurs, 9 Javan Gibbon, 11 European Bison and over 60 Lowland Gorillas back to their natural habitat.
What is also outstanding is they protect an area in Africa roughly the same size as Kent! Something I did not know before I went. They have their own overseas projects in Congo and Gabon, Madagascar and Java.
The Park is covers 90 acres of ancient parkland is home to more than 400 animals! Which in my opinion appeared to be looked after really well, We even saw Gorillas eating a giant block of ice which they clearly enjoyed.
Upon arrival parking was clearly sign posted and spaces available.
We entered via the gift shop and given a map, We then headed straight in, the girls were very excited to get walking to see all of the animals. My girls absolutely adored seeing Nusu the Elephant Calf a cheeky headstrong little guy.
The park was very clean and pushchair friendly too.
There were also lots of opportunities to purchase food or drinks throughout the park, the choice was really fun too, Food like chips or pasta with your choice of topping or hot dogs/ burgers, they catered really well for vegetarians and vegans too.
My tip would be; Wear comfortable footwear, as lots of walking around the park and also to go on the climbing adventure * additional charge
The girls really enjoyed exploring the Ice Age area of the park with the giant models of animals that are now extinct. Which they had so many questions about and we were able to answer from the helpful fact board in front of each exhibit.
If you do go and love what you see, they have a second park called Port Lympne Hotel and Reserve. The pictures we saw for their short breaks looked fantastic and by staying there it helps support their vital overseas work.
We had a fantastic family day out at Howlett’s there is so much to see and do there all in beautifully picturesque surroundings.
We were kindly gifted our entry tickets in exchange for this review and social media coverage.