As I’ve mentioned before on my blog, I don’t like zoos. I don’t really like safari parks, or in fact anywhere that wild animals are kept locked up, however I also accept that these places are necessary.
If they are going to exist though, then they should all be like the one not too far from me. Situated a short distance to the west of Nantes is this place: http://www.planetesauvage.com a great example of how to run a park. I come here fairly often, bringing my kids and grandkids when they come to visit, but also my friends kids when I haven’t been for a while and fancy a visit. It must be said, I love the place.
There are three main parts to the park. 1. The safari trail, done in the car. 2. Half way round there ‘s a stop with a kids zoo type thing, goats, sheep, donkeys and chooks roam free trying to steal your popcorn, then finally, 3. There is the pedestrian area, which encompasses the reptile park, Marine City, large birds, primates and various other creatures from this great big wide world.
The “big five” are here, and the route of the safari trail takes you through the middle of their habitat. Many years ago I was in a car with a sunroof, and my daughter was standing up through it feeding a giraffe. My friends behind took a picture but sadly, over the years and various house moves, its been lost. Over the course of my visits I’ve hand fed elephants, camels and had a tiger put the drivers side wing mirror into its mouth.
Driving through with the windows open, all manner of beasts come to to your window to see if any nutrient less popcorn you’ve bought at the entrance is available. Its quite exciting to have a zebra, or a kudu with its head entirely in the car, and feeding them by hand remains a thrill, no matter how many times I do it. (Be careful though, zebras bite)!
The lions are magnificent, the big male serenely surveys his harem (the windows are closed here).
Its not a cheap day out, its a tourist spot so all food, drinks and souvenirs are horrifically expensive but there’s little in this world that gives me a better feeling than this:
This post is linked on here: http://eco-gites.blogspot.fr/2015/03/animal-tales-14.html