New Forest Wildlife Park is one of our favourite days out, partly because with a large age gap between my children they both enjoy themselves and there’s plenty to keep children of all ages entertained.
Situated in woodland between Ashurst and Southampton it’s easy to find and home to a great range of animals in very natural settings. We love the animals at NFWP and they’re quite different to what you’d expect to find in zoos. The animals include (in size order!) adorable and tiny harvest mice, hedgehogs, incredibly cute otters, snuffly wild boar, lynx, deer and the HUGE European Bison.
We ventured back to NFWP for a family day out on a sunny day this July and thought we’d let you know about the changes at the park which have been made to keep us all safe.
Unlike some attractions you don’t have to pre-book your tickets which is great for last minute trips and also the worry of booking a day only for it to rain torrentially! Numbers are being closely monitored so please check the NFWP website before visiting in case of a change.
The restaurant is situated at the entrance and is currently serving take away food and drinks. There’s plenty of outside seating and it’s all well spaced to keep you separate from other families.
The entrance kiosk is now outside to save you an unnecessary trip indoors. Where possible they’re promoting cashless payments and preferably contactless which can be scanned through screens.
One way system
Understandably there is a one way system around the park which flows nicely. Where paths lead to a dead end there is plenty of signage reminding people to give each other space. The butterfly house is currently closed as it’s a humid environment which can’t be ventilated but I think that’s the only attraction off show.
Keeper talks have been cancelled to avoid drawing large crowds but you’re still able to watch feeding time and the keepers, who are very knowledgeable are happy to answer any questions you have about their beautiful animals.
One of the highlights of NFWP is their impressive adventure playground, it’s huge and it’s great fun. It was fantastic to see parents were supervising their children far more than I’ve ever seen before at a playground. Even though it was a warm July day in the summer holidays the playground is so large that there was plenty of space. I saw hand gel at the entrance exit to the deer enclosure and wolf/wallaby/lynx area but not in the playground so it might be worth making sure you have your own supply to keep little hands clean.
Information is correct at the time of writing but as things can change so quickly please check the New Forest Wildlife Park website before visiting.