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Belfast's Best Kept Secret
Member Name: broxi3781
Date: 18/05/10, updated on 14/08/10 (43 review reads)
Advantages: Great little zoo, one of Belfasts best childrens attractions but very uncrowded
Disadvantages: Steep hills
Belfast Zoo is so underrated. Its an absolutely brilliant small zoo. Of course you wont see as many different species as some of the larger zoos, but it has a nice a variety and a decent amount of space for each animal. Its generally not at all crowded, and the children can really get a good a view of the animals for as long as they like without jostling crowds ( the exception being Easter Week when its packed).
The zoo has now become an elephant retirement home and offers a comfortable place for former circus elephants. This is all the more reason to support the zoo with a visit or membership. It also boasts rare barbary lions, penguins, sea lions and a number of other interesting creatures. I especially like the prairie dogs that have escaped their enclosure and live loose on a hillside. We loved the Lemurs running loose too, but these seem to be confined now. One jumped up and stole my sons lunch, which he found amusing, but I suppose others might not. thankfully I was able to snatch back the sandwich as it had clear wrap on it.
The zoo also has a nice play park for the children. It is basic, but always a hit with our boys. It has a farm area where you can pat some of the farm animals near the park. there are several children's events as well throughoout the year such as a teddy bear picnic and a chance to wrap gifts for chimpanzees. More details can be found on their website.
We've had a membership for years, and frequently visit. We still enjoy ourselves every time, and the membership is money well spent for locals.
You can bring your own lunch, or buy one in the zoos cafe ( the one at the bottom offers a great deal more variety). Prices are reasonable for food and the gift shop, staff very courteous.
The only downside is the zoo is quite steep and can be a bit tiring pushing a pram, or could be difficult if not physically fit, although they do have shop mobility scooters available.
Summary: If you visit Belfast, dont miss the zoo, if you live here, try a membership!
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