West Midland Safari Park changes entry rules from today - steps all visitors must now follow
The park has brought in a new entrance process meaning families will now need to book a time slot to enter the drive-through safari
- 10:05, 5 JUN 2023
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West Midlands Safari Park has introduced major rule changes for visitors accessing its drive-through safari from today. It means that anyone travelling around the park by car will now need to book a time slot.
As of June 5, guests will also only be allowed to go around the drive-through area once during each visit. The Midlands attraction announced the new rules on social media last month and was immediately met with complaints from guests , with some arguing it made their tickets 'worse value for money'.
The drive-through area is home to rhinos, big cat species, elephants and more and gives guests the chance to hand-feed some of the animals including giraffes and zebra.
Read more: West Midland Safari Park introduces major rule change - and people aren't happy
Bosses say the new entrance process has been introduced following feedback from visitors. So, whether you're planning a trip soon or you've already booked tickets, here are the steps you'll need to follow...
How to book tickets for West Midland Safari Park under new rules
Tickets to visit the safari park can be booked ahead of time online at wmsp.co.uk , with prices from £22 for children over three years old and adults. Tickets can also still be purchased on the day, with the same passes starting from £32.
From Monday June 5, guests will be able to enter the safari park's car parking areas without having to present a ticket. Those with pre-booked tickets will have a mandatory time slot to enter the drive-through safari, as well as a ticket to enter the walk-through areas.
Those who need to buy a ticket on the day can park up, then head to the ticket office at Lost City Plaza to pay. Visitors will then be able to enter the drive-through section of the park during their elected time slot and will not be able to re-enter the area after they have completed their lap.
Why has West Midland Safari Park introduced time slots?
Park bosses say they hope the changes 'will improve guest experiences' during their visits. The original announcement from the park on Facebook said: "We’ve listened to all the feedback we’ve had about the length of time it can take guests to travel our four-mile safari drive-through, and will now be introducing safari drive-through time slots from June 5 onwards.
"When booking online from this date, you’ll be asked to select a mandatory time slot to visit our safari drive-through. If you arrive at the safari park without pre-booked tickets, you’ll need to park up in our car park and head over to the ticket office to purchase your tickets and reserve an available safari time slot.
"You can still enter the walk-through areas as soon as the park opens, even if your safari time slot is later in the day and can re-enter the walk-through areas as many times as you like throughout your day – there’s lots to see and discover. Thanks for your cooperation during this time. We really hope these changes will give our guests the best possible experience when visiting WMSP."
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West Midland Safari Park makes major change to drive-through safari experience
A new scheme by West Midland Safari Park to introduce drive-through time slots has received a mixed response from customers and fans.
The popular attraction near Bewdley has announced that it is introducing safari drive-through time slots as a way of reducing the amount of time it takes customers to travel around the four-mile drive-through section.
The new scheme is due to come into force on June 5 and will mean that anyone booking online from that date onwards will be asked to select a timeslot on the West Midland Safari Park (WMSP) website.
Additionally, anyone arriving without pre-booking tickets will be asked to park in the car park, purchase tickets and reserve an available time slot.
The park has said that the new decision had come after listening to feedback from customers about the length of time it could take to travel around the drive-through.
A spokesman for the park also said that customers could still enter the walk-through area as soon as the park opened and could re-enter that area as much as they liked throughout the day.
The spokesman said: "We’ve listened to all the feedback we’ve had about the length of time it can take guests to travel our four-mile safari drive-through, and will now be introducing safari drive-through time slots from June 5 onwards.
"When booking online from this date, you’ll be asked to select a mandatory time slot to visit our safari drive-through.
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West Midlands Safari Park introduces major rule change - and people aren't happy
W est Midlands Safari Park has introduced mandatory time slots for its safari drive-through - but some people aren't happy about the new rules. As of June 5, all guests wanting to see the park's animals by car will need to reserve a time slot.
And in another shake-up they will only be allowed to go around the drive-through once. The Midlands attraction made the announcement on Facebook, saying the decision had been made after feedback from customers.
The post said: "We’ve listened to all the feedback we’ve had about the length of time it can take guests to travel our four-mile safari drive-through, and will now be introducing safari drive-through time slots from June 5 onwards.
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"When booking online from this date, you’ll be asked to select a mandatory time slot to visit our safari drive-through. If you arrive at the safari park without pre-booked tickets, you’ll need to park up in our car park and head over to the ticket office to purchase your tickets and reserve an available safari time slot.
"You can still enter the walk-through areas as soon as the park opens, even if your safari time slot is later in the day and can re-enter the walk-through areas as many times as you like throughout your day – there’s lots to see and discover.
"Thanks for your cooperation during this time. We really hope these changes will give our guests the best possible experience when visiting WMSP."
Reaction to West Midlands Safari Park's new rules
The announcement was quickly met with dozens of comments. Some thought the change was a good idea to prevent congestion, while others branded it 'a shame'.
Jane Summer said: "So we can only go round the safari once now? I’d love to know who suggested that as a good idea!!"
Lora Corser commented: "This is honestly a massive shame, I’ve always loved going around the safari as we’re leaving the park. The ability to go multiple times has always meant we’ve been able to see more animals who may have been sleeping or hiding earlier in the day."
Cassandra Oliver wrote: "This is for the best. We didn't get to see the last part of the safari as the que to get through was so long we had to by pass the last third of our journey!" And Joanne Kumar said: "That’s not very good and makes it less value for money. You’ll also find the walk through areas are busier!"
The park clarified in the comments that any returns tickets will stay the same, but guests will still need to book their return visit and time slot online. Responding to another comment, the park said: "Our admission includes access to the drive-through safari once, during your chosen time slot.
"For guests booking online, you will still receive a free return ticket valid for six months that will allow you to come back and experience the drive-through again."
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You are here > Home > Inspire Me > Birmingham Blog > Meet kids' favourites at West Midland Safari Park this half term
Meet kids' favourites at West Midland Safari Park this half term
To continue the celebrations for the tourist attraction’s 50 th anniversary, they have invited some of their favourite friends along, to join in with the fun, including Peppa Pig, Bing, Bluey, Hey Duggee and Paddington™.
The characters will be making personal appearances at ticketed meet and greet sessions in the Park’s Safari Academy (at no additional cost to admission tickets) on the following dates:
Peppa Pig – 27 & 28 May
Bing – 29 May
Bluey – 30 & 31 May
Hey Duggee – 1 & 2 June
Paddington™ – 3 & 4 June
PR & Events Officer, Bethan Davis, said, “ As part of the Park’s 50 th Anniversary celebrations, it’s really exciting that some of our favourite children’s TV characters will be joining us for the whole nine days of May half term.
“After the popularity of previous meet and greets we have hosted, we wanted to give our guests another chance to meet their favourite characters. We have introduced pre-bookable time slots so that guests can guarantee a meet and greet with the character of their choice.”
During the meet and greet session, guests in their group of up to six people will be able to meet and interact with the character and take a picture with them.
As well as the opportunity to meet a special character this half term, there will also be a chance for guests to attend the Park’s 50 th anniversary photo exhibition, some amazing photos from the archives will be displayed and kids can take part in some themed crafts.
The Adventure Theme Park will also be open (ride wristbands or tickets charged extra) and there is a chance to see the animal talks, shows and encounters too.
Character appearances, the four-mile safari, walk-through exhibits, animal talks and encounters, are all included in the admission charge and children under the age of three are free.
Guests are encouraged to book online in advance for the best prices, and a pre-booked time slot for the meet and greet sessions is essential.
Adventure Theme Park rides are charged extra. Admission includes a Free Return to visit again in six months, only when booking online in advance.
Further information about West Midland Safari Park is available from the Park’s website www.wmsp.co.uk or by telephone 01299 402114. Find out more on the Safari Park’s official Facebook page: www.facebook.com/WestMidSafari .
West Midland Safari Park is an award-winning visitor attraction, located in Worcestershire in the heart of England. It is home to a variety of all-weather attractions, including four miles of drive-through safari, the largest animatronic dinosaur exhibit in the UK and a theme park. With acres of versatile outdoor space, easy access from the M5 and free parking, WMSP is the perfect venue.
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Moscow parks – leisure, nature and historical
Moscow is the most green megapolis in the world. There are over a hundred parks and green spaces like gardens, squares and boulevards. You will definitely bump into a few of them wherever you go. Whether you are interested in memorial, historic parks, parks of wildlife or you just want to have a calm break from the speedy city life – city parks have something special for everyone.
Moscow leisure parks
The leisure Moscow parks are undoubtedly the most popular and famous with the locals and travelers. Today such parks provide a great number of exciting entertainments for Muscovites and city guests, adults and children.
The Gorky Park
Gorky Park opened in 1928 and was the first holiday park in the Soviet Union with playgrounds, a sports stadium, exhibition halls and attractions for kids. Today it has a fresh, vibrant appearance. The park features bike rental stations, a comfortable business area with Wi-Fi, an outdoor movie theatre and a greenhouse where you can buy fresh greens such as basil and lettuce. To contemplate the sky and the stars, go to the observatory and look through the telescope while listening to fascinating stories from astronomers. Enjoy many sports in the park: volleyball, handball, football or a peaceful jog around the beautiful surroundings.
Opened in September 2017, Zaryadye is the youngest on our list. Located just a few minutes away from Red Square, it includes various activities like the floating bridge with its thin V-form extension, an ice cave, also concert hall and an amphitheater. The entire territory of the park was divided into four zones of Russia: forest, steppe, tundra, and the floodplains.
By walking along the Moskva River’s bank from the Gorky Park towards Vorobievy Gory (Sparrow Hills) you’ll reach Neskuchny Sad («Not Boring» garden), a wonderful place in the Moscow center, one of Moscow’s oldest parks, charming slice of wildlife. The park mostly consists of pristine forest, dotted with old summer pavilions, ponds and quaint little stone bridges. There are a lot of opportunities for different activities lots of children playground, a ping-pong and chess clubs, football fields and tennis courts, horse riding, tree climbing and having rest in one of the nice cafes.
Hermitage Garden has always been known as an amusement, entertainment center with theatres, shows, cafes, summer pavilions, pergolas since 1830. Shalyapin, Sobinov, Nezhdanova – great Russian opera singers starred on the garden stage. Famous Russian composer Rakhmaninov conducted the orchestra. Sara Bernar, Maria Yermolova, outstanding actresses, played in the open air performances. Tolstoy and Lenin had a stroll in the garden. So lots of celebrities from different epoques liked it a lot and spent their time in Hermitage Garden. You can find here three theatres in the garden: Hermitage, Sphere and New Opera. During winter an ice rink works here and in summer a musical stage is assembled to host jazz and brass band festivals.
In Sokolniki Park visitors can play billiard, chess or draughts, table tennis, as well as go cycling, roller blading and swimming in the summer and ice skating or skiing in winter. Each season is highlighted by special memorable and bright events, for example, Summer Jazz Festival or Baby Fest (for future mums), open air beach disco parties, Ice Cream Day, International Clown Festival and many other shows and exhibitions. The park has an observatory, kids center and a co-working zone with free Wi-Fi which is really nice for spending high quality work time there.
Moscow nature parks
The nature parks are national reserves with the amazing forestry and incredible variety of animals and plants there. The breath of wildlife and the chance to be closer to the virgin nature excites both children and grownups. Hundreds of different species of animals can be found in Moscow nature parks. The richest woodlands with old and even ancient trees, like a 200 years pine-tree in the Elk Island National Nature Park, are the point of passionate interest for visitors.
Aptekarsky Ogorod (Apothecary Garden)
Aptekarsky Ogorod (Apothecary Garden) is one of the oldest gardens in Moscow. It was founded in the XVIII century by Peter the First (great Russian emperor). A larch that he planted himself still grows in the garden, so it’s more than 250 years old. At the time of its foundation, it was a garden with herbs and medicinal plants and was used as an educational center for doctors. Today there are the orangery with its tropical palms, the carp pond, and the immense trees that dot the landscape and turn wonderful golden shades in the autumn. Several restaurants and cafes work here making it a very nice spot for relaxation no matter what season it is. You can book a special tour or join the guided excursion group.
Losiny Ostrov (Elk Island Park)
Losiny Ostrov (Elk Island Park) is located at the north of Moscow. It covers 22 km from the west to the east and 10 km from the north to the south and it’s one of the most beautiful national parks in Moscow. Two rivers, Yausa and Pechorka begin here. You can find lots of fields, ponds, meadows, streams in the park as well as elks. Here you can enjoy guided tours, available in English. You can choose a guided tour about flora and fauna of the area, you’ll learn why elks are there, which animals are their neighbors. Or enjoy another excursion, which is totally devoted to historical past of ancient tribes once lived there, you’ll know about old Russian mythology, rituals and traditions.
Serebyany Bor (Silver Forest)
Serebyany Bor (Silver Forest) is a famous pine forest in the west of Moscow. The park has 230 forms of plant life, and is also home to watersports complex, providing a lot of activities for visitors. The layout of Serebryany Bor is unusual, as it is located on an artificial island between a meander in the Moscow River and a channel. There is an artificial lake, the Deep Gulf and picturesque Bezdonnoe (Bottomless) Lake in the depths of the forest. Serebryany Bor’s beaches are the cleanest in the city and very popular among Muscovites. On weekends it is difficult to find a free spot here, especially because a whole range of services are offered to visitors, from simple deckchairs to catamaran and yacht rides. Driving is prohibited on the territory of the island so be ready to use trolleybus to reach the entrance.
Greenhouse of Botanical Garden
Main Botanical Garden of The Russian Academy of Sciences is the largest and most famous is Moscow. The garden is a real museum of nature with a very rich (more than 18000 types) collection of plants. The park was founded in 1945 at the place of the 17th century Apothecaries’ Gardens. The garden’s collection is turned into botanical expositions, made with use of modern receptions of landscape architecture. Here you can see a tree nursery, a shadow garden, hothouse complex, collection of flowers, a rosary, exposition of coastal plants, garden of continuous blossoming, Japanese garden and expositions of cultural plants and natural flora plants. The biggest part of Garden is the Tree nursery occupying the space of 75 hectares. About 2 thousand wood plants grow here. Another big exposition of the Garden is nature Flora, divided into six botanic-geographical collections: European part of Russia, Caucuses, Central Asia, Siberia and Far East. Pride of the Main Botanical Garden is the collection of tropical, coastal and water plants, which is considered as the best in Europe. The Japanese garden, a great model of Japanese landscape gardening art has a 13-level stone pagoda of the 18th century, stone Japanese lamps, ponds, falls and streams, tea lodges and more than 100 species of the most character Japan plants. It is especially decorative in spring, during Oriental cherry blossoming and in fall, when foliage blazes in crimson colors.
Moscow historic parks
Historic nature parks and estates once were the mansions of the Moscow aristocracy. At that far times the estates were outside the Moscow city limits, but after the city expansion and urbanization, they became easily accessible.
Kolomenskoye Museum and Park
The chief attraction of the park is undoubtedly the stone Church of the Ascension of the Lord. It was constructed in 1532 by order of Tsar Vasily III to commemorate the birth of his son and heir, Ivan the Terrible. But there is a lot more to see in the park: the pretty Church of the Icon of Our Lady of Kazan – with its bright azure domes and plenty of gold. Further into the park there is a charming Church of the Beheading of St John the Baptist, built by Ivan the Terrible to mark his coronation.
Kuskovo Park is one of the oldest country estates in Moscow. It was given to General Sheremetev by Peter the Great in 1715, but was left to fall into neglect before being plundered by Napoleon’s troops in 1812. Nowadays the estate has been restored to its former glory and is a good example of Russian 18th Century imperial architecture. The palace is a fine and rare example of wooden neoclassicism. It was completed in 1775, and the rich interiors remain unchanged since 1779. It includes a room hung with exclusive exquisite Flemish tapestries, an abundance of silk wallpaper and an impressive collection of 18th century European and Russian paintings. The palace looks onto the lake, which is surrounded by smaller pavilions: pretty Italian, Dutch and Swiss Cottages, Blank’s Hermitage and the old Orangery, where the State Ceramics Museum is located now, an extensive and absorbing collection of porcelain from the 18th century to the present day. On the other side of the lake is a large wood popular with local cyclists and joggers.
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West Midland Safari Park
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The Adventure Theme Park is closed for the Park’s winter season. It will reopen on Saturday 10th February 2024.
Rides in the Theme Park open 90 minutes after the Park gates open. Please see our Calendar of Opening Times to check the date you’re visiting.
Ride Wristband Prices: Ride Wristband – £12.00 Little Penguin Wristband – £7.00 (child between 0.8m-1.0m in height)
Ride Ticket Prices: 1 Ride Ticket – £2.00 4 Ride Tickets – £7.00 6 Ride Tickets – £9.00
Please note: If your child is under 3 but tall enough to go on the rides, they will still need a wristband or ride tickets. These can be purchased on the day of your visit.
We operate a time board system during off-peak dates (weekdays outside of school holidays), with rides running for 20-30 minutes before closing and then reopening 30 minutes later.
Wild River Rafting is closed until further notice.
Select your height below to see which rides you can go on!
Wristband and ride ticket prices are charged in addition to Park admission. Everyone, including under 3s, will need a wristband or ride tickets to go on the rides if they meet the minimum height requirements.
If the ride requires 1:1 accompaniment of a child due to their height, each child would need to be accompanied by at least one person who meets the height requirements. On water rides, this person must be a person over the age of 18.
We will issue an essential companion wristband free of charge when accompanying the guest requiring support has purchased a wristband. You will need to show your essential companion admission ticket again at the Wristband Office. In order to qualify for a free essential companion, you must have applied through Nimbus, please click here for more information .
Wristbands and ride tickets are available to purchase separately on the day of your visit from the Adventure Theme Park. Wristbands and ride tickets are only valid on the day of purchase and no refunds are available. Wristbands must be fitted by the cashier at the point of purchase, are non-transferable and invalid if removed.
The Wristband Office will close one hour before the Theme Park rides close.
There is a maximum weight limit of 250kg on a Wild River Rafting boat and a maximum of 2 adults at any time. If guests do not wish to be weighed prior to boarding Wild River Rafting, they will not be permitted on the ride.
A shirt must be worn by all guests wishing to go on any of our Theme Park rides, and must remain on whilst on the rides. Shoes must also be worn at all times to access our Theme Park rides. If you are wearing loose footwear (flip flops/sandals etc.), our ride operator will attend and advise where to leave your shoes on certain rides.
Long sleeved shirts must be worn if a guest would like to go on ‘Slippery Snake Slide’.
All guests must also be able to sit up and hold on unaided when on any ride.
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WATCH THE MOMENT A RARE BABY RHINO IS BORN ON CCTV…
The amazing moment a rare baby southern white rhino was born at West Midland Safari Park, has been caught on CCTV.
Keepers watching the live footage behind-the-scenes, saw the female calf arrive at 1:48am on 11 January 2024, following a tricky breach birth, for 15-year-old mum, Keyah.
After a few attempts, keepers noticed that the calf was struggling to get to her feet, so stepped in quickly to get her standing, enabling her to tentatively walk to her mum to have her first feed.
Now at a week old, the calf is doing really well and has been given the African name Malaika, meaning ‘angel’.
Head Keeper of Ungulates, Lisa Watkins, said, “ The team are absolutely over the moon with the safe arrival of a female white rhino calf. After a long wait, having had two male calves born in 2021, a female was a very welcome addition to the crash. Mum, Keyah, is doing a fantastic job of caring for the newborn with older brother Jumani eager to meet his little sister.
“I am really proud of the team for all their daily hard work and dedication, to allow this calf to arrive safe and healthy. We all look forward to showing the new arrival off in the near future, but for now, both mum and calf are spending some important time bonding in the warmth and comfort of their house.”
Malaika is the sixth baby white rhino to be born at the Park in the last eight years, marking another success for the Park’s involvement in a collaborative European breeding programme, conserving threatened species.
Katie McDonald, Research and Conservation Officer, said “Like all wildlife attractions, we believe it is extremely important for us to contribute to the conservation of the species we hold. White rhinos are one of the species for which there is a European-wide breeding programme and WMSP has been a strong contributor. This is the sixth white rhino calf born since 2016.”
She continued , “Having safe and healthy populations in zoos and parks is extremely valuable when the situation in the animal’s natural habitat is precarious. White rhinos are threatened in the wild by poachers, who kill them so they can sell rhino horn on the black market.
“Through our amazing conservation partner, Save the Rhino International, we actively support rhino conservation by helping to fund anti-poaching activities in uMkhuze Game Reserve, South Africa, where dedicated ranger teams work every day to monitor and protect rhinos across the reserve.”
Southern white rhinos are classed as ‘near threatened’ by the IUCN (International Union for the Conservation of Nature), with around 16,000 remaining individuals.
The population of white rhinos has recovered greatly since almost becoming extinct in the early 1900s, but despite being somewhat of a conservation success story, they are the subspecies of rhinos most threatened by poaching.
Malaika will be kept in the warmth of the house while she settles in, then will slowly be introduced to the rest of the herd, including brother Jumani, half-brothers Granville and Jambo and dad, Barney.
She brings the number of white rhinos at the Park to nine, who can be seen on the safari drive-through.
BOOKINGS OPEN FOR SAFARI PARK’S WILD NEW LODGES…
Bookings are now being taken for West Midland Safari Park’s brand-new luxury lodges, which include overnight stays with views of hippos and African wild dogs.
Following planning being granted last month, work has now started on the development, which will see the instalment of eight lodges, alongside new habitats for the animals.
First of its kind in Europe, four lodges will offer incredible views of African wild dogs, whereas four more lodges will be the only place in the UK where you can stay overlooking hippopotamus.
The African Wild Dog Lodges will be single-storey and can sleep up to six guests, offering incredible views into the dogs’ habitat through the huge windows spanning the bedrooms, living spaces and outside decking area.
The Hippo Lodges will be two-storey, with open-plan living spaces, covered outdoor viewing areas, spacious balconies and two bedrooms, sleeping either five or six people.
Two of the Hippo Lodges will be accessible for wheelchair users, with a double or twin singles downstairs, as well as a wet room, wide doorways and car parking outside the lodge.
Neil James, Project Manager, said, “ As with all our lodges, we take influence from the animals themselves when it comes to the designs and the interiors. For the African wild dog lodges, we wanted to create a different style to represent the world’s most prolific land predator. These animals are perfectly designed to cope with the harsh African environment and these lodges will feel like they are born from the earth, but with a chic finish.
“Overlooking the pool and natural landscape, the tones throughout the Hippo Lodges will really complement our group of hippopotamuses. We have blended a natural and neutral palette with African textures and patterns. These lodges are warm, welcoming and stylish and the perfect place to sit back and relax whilst watching the charismatic animals.”
Guests will be able to watch the UK’s largest pod of hippopotamus, from the comfort of their lodges, as the four animals explore their new environment, which will be upgraded with 24-hour access to both their indoor and extended outdoor habitats.
The new hippo house will also be suitable for future breeding programmes, with an indoor pool, mud wallows and evening pools which offer close access viewing for guests from their lodge balconies.
The wild dogs’ habitat will be expansive, allowing the pack of four dogs to explore, socialise and play, with integrated enrichment points to stimulate natural behaviours.
Both habitats will integrate into the Park’s pedestrianised African Walking Trail, which will allow day guests to view the wild dogs from a split-level viewing point, with additional viewing along the trail for the hippos.
This will be the first time in the Park’s history, that guests will be able to see the African wild dogs on foot.
African wild dogs are classified as ‘endangered’ and common hippos ‘vulnerable’, by the IUCN (International Union for the Conservation of Nature), with both species facing threats in the wild such as poaching and habitat loss.
Both species are part of an EEP (EAZA Ex-situ Programme), a breeding programme supporting the conservation of their wild counterparts by creating a reserve population. The new facilities will enable the Park to continue its important work with the EEP.
Safari Lodges short breaks include breakfast and dinner, spectacular views of the animals, admission to the Park for two days and Theme Park wristbands, during the summer season.
Guests can now book their Hippo Lodge or African Wild Dog Lodge stay, via the Safari Lodges website, where they can choose dates from 19 July to 30 September 2024. Prices will start from £515 per night, based on two guests.
TREE-MENDOUS TREAT FOR CUB’S FIRST CHRISTMAS…
A Sumatran tiger cub at West Midland Safari Park has been involved in the festive celebrations by being given her very first Christmas tree.
Five-month-old Lestari will be experiencing her first Christmas at the Park and will be spending it with her mum, Dourga and her keepers, who at this time of year are often using seasonal items as forms of enrichment, for the animals in their care.
This may be stockings full of hay for the rhinos, bauble pits for the meerkats, or in this case, offering the textures and scents of a small, tiger cub-sized Christmas tree, donated by the Park’s events team.
Head Keeper of Carnivores, Chris Hodgkins, said, “ As it’s Lestari’s first Christmas, to make it extra special she was given a Christmas tree as enrichment. Enrichment is important for all our animals, as it gives them something to explore and encourages natural behaviours.
“Lestari loved the tree and it didn’t take her long to realise she could play with it, especially after her mum had pulled it out the ground! We loved watching her stalk and pounce on it, then drag it around her habitat. I think it’s safe to say she has been a good girl this year and will be getting a nice present from Santa! The keepers are thrilled to see how much she has grown and developed her own little personality! ”
At this time of year, there are over 300 trees at the Park, being using as decorations for the Park’s Santa Safari and Safari Skating events.
In the new year, the trees will either be donated as enrichment for the animals or recycled as part of a ‘treecycling’ campaign for the Park’s partnership with local charity, the Grace Kelly Childhood Cancer Trust.
Volunteers, including staff members from the Park, will be collecting used Christmas trees from people’s homes and dropping them at the Park where the trees will be chipped on site to be used as bedding for some of the animals.
Donations from the treecycling service will support children and their families in the area, fighting childhood cancer. More information can be found here: www.gkcct.org/treecycle
The Park will be open daily over the Christmas period until 7 January 2024, closing only for Christmas Day and Boxing Day.
Guests can see the animals on a winter safari, or on foot in the Park’s pedestrianised areas, including Lestari and Dourga in Tiger Tropics.
SAFARI PARK PRESENTS TO PARLIAMENT…
A member of staff at West Midland Safari Park has had the honour of presenting to members of parliament, about the amazing work the Education Team do at the tourist attraction.
Chloe Walton-Stenson, Senior Education Officer, was invited to speak at the All-Party Parliamentary Group, on behalf of BIAZA (British and Irish Association of Zoos and Aquariums) and chaired by Labour MP, Sarah Champion.
Peers and MPs listened to how the Education Team at the Park, actively engage learners of different ages, why there is a need for age-diverse education within zoos, with the example of Chloe’s award-winning Amateur Zoologist Club.
Chloe’s award came from BIAZA for the Education Team’s Amateur Zoologist Club, which was set up in 2022, working with the Park’s local ‘University of the 3 rd Age’, providing members with chances to learn a variety of zoological topics and get closer to nature.
Chloe said, “Being invited to share the fantastic work we do as part of education at West Midland Safari Park, with members of parliament was an honour and a very exciting opportunity. Bringing conservation education to learners of all ages, but especially mature learners, is one of my favourite parts of my job role, so it was incredibly special to share this with a new audience. It is vitally important that zoos value everyone who wants to learn about biodiversity, as we can all play in part in protecting the natural world.”
Alongside Chloe, there were presentations from Noah’s Ark Zoo Farm on their fantastic work, improving accessibility at their site and Dr Jo Judge, CEO of BIAZA, lead discussions on behalf of the zoo members present.
Dr Jo Judge said, “ The extinction and climate crisis means it’s more important than ever our politicians are thinking about how to empower people of all ages to take action. Chloe did a fantastic job representing the work of good zoos and aquariums, to inspire people to take care of the natural world and then help them to take action to protect the planet. BIAZA members such as West Midland Safari Park are committed to creating a better world through conservation and education .”
As well as the Education Team’s involvement with mature learners, Chloe also talked about the Park’s commitment to supporting local schools and charities, and opportunities for the Park’s animal care students, who take part in courses onsite at the Park’s Safari Academy.
The All-Party Parliamentary Group was held at Portcullis House, a government office for Parliamentary staff, in London, on 5 December.
SAFARI PARK’S SANTA AND SKATING SPECTACLE UNVEILED…
West Midland Safari Park is pleased to announce that its popular Christmas event starts tomorrow and this year there is an exciting new feature – Safari Skating.
From 24 November and running daily until Christmas Eve, guests will have the chance to see Santa in his magical grotto during the day, or on selected dates, visit Santa during the evening.
Alongside seeing the big man himself, the Park is inviting guests to try out their skating skills on its brand-new Glice® rink, which is open until 7 January 2024.
This eco-friendly ice rink alternative is suitable for all the family and doesn’t require any water or energy, meaning it’s more sustainable (and not a soggy bottom in sight!).
Ahead of opening, who better to test the new feature than Santa, who grabbed his Head Elf (and a stability aid), then was seen zooming around the rink and enjoying the frequent ‘snow’ flurries.
Head of Marketing, Rochelle Zare, said, “ Christmas is one of the best times of the year to visit West Midland Safari Park, and this year is no exception. After the tremendous amount of work that’s been put into this year’s event, the team here cannot wait to see the faces of families entering the Park, seeing the beautiful winter wonderland we’ve created, and experiencing our magical grotto and new Glice ® rink. ”
Guests looking for some extra festive fun, can choose to purchase a skating only ticket or add Safari Skating on to their Santa Safari or winter visit to the Park.
There will also be the opportunity to purchase some winter gifts or some festive food and drinks, at the new outlets next to the rink.
For the Christmas season, the Park has been magically transformed into a winter wonderland, with over 300 Christmas trees, new illuminated characters, lights, baubles, photo points and even thick layers of ‘snow’.
Guests to the grotto will be greeted by Santa’s team of friendly elves who will magically transport families to the North Pole on Santa’s newly refurbished sleigh featuring a talking owl and enchanting northern lights.
Disembarking the sleigh, they will follow a path through a magical winter wonderland, busy elf workshop and reindeer stables, finally reaching the grotto to pay a visit to the big man himself.
Children will receive a memento of their day by having a picture taken of themselves with Santa which they can then take home, alongside being able to choose their very own present from the elves’ workshop.
Also included in the package is a visit to Mrs Claus’ Kitchen, where children can enjoy a drink and cookie, whilst adults are treated to a hot drink and festive treat.
There will be a chance for children to write their letters to Santa and post them in his friendly talking postbox, with a chance of winning a family annual pass.
Additionally, guests visiting this winter can add on a virtual reality sleigh ride – a magical 4D adventure to the North Pole, helping Santa to test out his sleigh before his big journey on Christmas Eve.
PAW-SOME PUMPKIN PLAY FOR PARK’S BABIES…
Something spooky is in the air at West Midland Safari Park, as the animal keepers have been treating the Park’s newest cubs and pups to their own pumpkins.
For Sumatran tiger cub, Lestari, red panda cub, Lushan and meerkat pup, Lily, this is the first time they have experienced pumpkins and there were mixed reactions to the large, seasonal fruits!
Lushan and Lestari seemed to be very wary to start with, approaching the pumpkins with extreme caution and then retreating hastily, leaving their mothers to enjoy them instead.
Lily the meerkat pup however, had her paws straight on the prize, led by the rest of the mob, who were very excited to see this novel form of enrichment and frantically started to scratch and nibble at the tasty, orange flesh.
Katie McDonald, Research and Conservation Officer, explained, “ We use enrichment to allow our animals to exhibit natural behaviours. This might be to give the animals different foraging opportunities, or sometimes it exercises muscles they might not always use. It may also increase exploration of the environment by using interesting scent trails.
“Novel objects such as pumpkins allow our animals to investigate something that looks, smells and feels different. Some species, like our meerkats can use their cognitive skills to find food inside them, whilst other animals such as our tigers, like to stalk and capture them! Enrichment is very important for our young, developing animals. They need varied environments to develop their movement and thinking skills, just like human babies, so it was great to see how each one reacted.”
For the red pandas, keepers hollowed out their pumpkin and filled it with bamboo, which was enjoyed by Lushan’s mum, Mei Lin, whereas the meerkats’ was filled with wriggly meal worms.
As the Park is currently themed with hundreds of pumpkins for their Spooky Spectacular Halloween event, any surplus are donated to the animals, so the tiger keepers also offered Lestari a complete, uncarved pumpkin.
Presented in this way was an instant hit and the four-month-old cub ‘stalked’ the pumpkin before pouncing on it and attacking it with her tiny claws, teeth and feet!
She was also seen fiercely protecting her precious plaything from her mum, Dourga, who was warned off with a few playful pats to the face.
Guests to the Park may spot pumpkins in some of the other animal habitats, on the safari and in the pedestrianised areas, some of which make up spooky photo points for guests to snap a picture.
During Spooky Spectacular (running until 5 November), guests can take part in a trail to win a tasty treat, enter a competition to win a Rhino Lodge stay, meet Patch the pumpkin-headed scarecrow, or take part in a brand-new ‘silly science show’ with new mascot, Mitzy Monster (from 28 October).
Lestari, Lushan and Lily can be seen in the walk-through areas of the Park and along with Spooky Spectacular activities, are included in the admission charge.
Rides available for 1.2m - 1.4m
African Big Apple Coaster
Flying Lion Kings
Monkey Mayhem (if accompanied)
Wild River Rafting
Dr. Umboto’s Catacombs
Jungle Cat Dodgems
Rescue Fire Rangers
Slippery Snake Slide
Zambezi Water Splash
Rides available for 1.0m - 1.2m
African Big Apple Coaster (if accompanied)
Jumbo Parade (if accompanied)
Pirate Ship (if accompanied)
Rhino Rollercoaster (if accompanied)
Wild River Rafting (if accompanied by an adult)
Congo Carousel (if accompanied)
Hurtling Hippos (if accompanied)
Jungle Cat Dodgems (if accompanied)
Slippery Snake Slide (if accompanied)
Zambezi Water Splash (if accompanied by an adult)
Rides available for 0.8m - 1.0m
Dino Dashers (if accompanied)
Rides available for 1.4m+
Venom Tower Drop
Jungle Cat Dodgems
Slippery Snake Slide
You’ll receive an exclusive tour behind the scenes of our state-of-the-art African Lion House while meeting and feeding our incredible pride of lions!
Speak to our Experiences Team regarding what dates and times are available. Phone 01299 406461 or Email [email protected]
£175.00 per person (aged 6+ years. Children aged 6-15 years must be accompanied by a full paying adult).
- Meeting and feeding our lions with a visit to their state-of-the-art house
- Admission to the Safari Park
- Mid-morning snack & drink
- Box of animal food
- Pictures from your day on a memory stick, taken by your guide
- A Free Return Code, allowing you to visit the Park again within 6 months
Please note that timings are subject to change. Timings may be earlier during the school holidays.
9.30am – Arrive at WMSP and pull over on the left-hand side of the main drive. Please remain in your vehicle and your Safari Guide will greet you. They will escort you to the main car park and then embark on our special Safari vehicle.
Arrive at our African Lion House. Your VIP guide will give you a tour behind the scenes. You will see the lions in their outdoor compound and have an opportunity to feed them. Afterwards, some of the other pride members will be released into the reserves.
10.30am – Time for a refreshment in Dino Diner.
11.00am – You are now free to spend the rest of the day at your leisure in the Safari Drive-through, Discovery Trail, and African Village.
Don’t forget to call in at Reception to pick up your memory stick and Free Return Ticket.
- Minimum age for participants is 6 years.
- This Experience is available on Thursdays, Saturdays and Sundays during our Summer Season, and Saturdays and Sundays during our Winter Season, subject to availability.
- Children aged 6-15 years must be accompanied by a full paying adult
- VIP Experiences can either be booked for a specific date or on an open-dated basis valid for the season. Whilst we will always try to accommodate changes in date, this is subject to availability and cannot always be guaranteed.
- Once an experience has been purchased refunds will not be considered.
Enter your E-Voucher code below to check your balance.
Take the main Hagley Road to the Quinton Expressway A456 through Hagley and Blakedown following Safari Park signs through Kidderminster to Bewdley.
Take the A449 to Kidderminster. Take the A456 to Bewdley. From the North: Take the M6 South, leave on exit 8 and join the M5. Take the M5 to exit 3 and follow the A456 through Kidderminster to Bewdley.
From the South:
Take the M5 North, leave on exit 6 and follow the A449 to Kidderminster. Take the A456 to Bewdley
WORK STARTED ON SAFARI PARK’S SECOND PHASE OF LUXURY LODGES…
Work has started at West Midland Safari Park for their second phase of luxury accommodation, including overnight stays with giraffes and white rhinos.
Following planning being granted last week, the Park can now go ahead with building eight two-storey lodges, integrated into the white rhino and giraffe habitats, giving guests a truly unforgettable and immersive experience.
The white rhino lodges will sleep four people and will be the only experience of its kind in the UK. The ground floor will provide an open-plan living space with a balcony offering ground-level views of the rhinos. Two bedrooms and a bathroom will be located on the first floor, along with a balcony providing panoramic views of the rhinos and Safari.
In the giraffe lodges, guests will be able to come eye-to-eye with the Park’s charismatic tower of eight giraffes from the balcony on the first floor, which is where the living room, kitchenette and dining room are situated. A bathroom and two bedrooms will be downstairs, providing accommodation for four people.
The introduction of the new lodges also enables the Park to update and improve the habitats of the animals, giving them 24-hour access to both their indoor and outdoor environments.
Managing Director, Chris Kelly said, “ We’re thrilled that planning has been granted for the next stage of our development. This will see new habitats, housing and facilities being built for our giraffes and white rhinos, enabling our brilliant team of wildlife keepers to continue the high standard of care they provide for our animals.
“Alongside the new animal facilities, we will be installing eight new lodges, four of which will offer spectacular views of the white rhinos, with the other half bringing you face-to-face with our beautiful giraffes, from the second-storey balconies.
“We’re hoping that we have the same guest reaction for the new lodges as we had for our elephant and cheetah lodges and our Red Panda Cottages, which has been outstanding. We look forward to releasing more information on booking and an opening date, later in the year.”
White rhino and Rothschild’s giraffe are classified as “Near Threatened” by the IUCN (International Union for the Conservation of Nature), with both species facing threats in the wild such as poaching and habitat loss.
The Park’s white rhino and Rothschild’s giraffe are both part of an EEP (European Endangered Species Programme), a breeding programme, supporting the conservation of their wild counterparts by creating a reserve population. The new facilities will enable the Park to continue their important work with the EEP.
As well as the new accommodation and habitats for the animals, the Park will also be installing pathways so that day guests can go to see the giraffes and African elephants on foot – a first for the Park in its 44-year history. These will be accessible from the Park’s current walk-through areas.
The new lodges will be integrated into the four-mile Safari and will sit alongside the elephant and cheetah lodges which opened earlier this year and quickly sold out. More recently, the Park opened two Red Panda Cottages, which still have some dates available for 2022.
Bookings for the new lodges will hopefully be available at the end of the year, but guests can book the Red Panda Cottages and find further information on the Safari Lodges website: www.safari-lodges.co.uk .
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