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Top 15 Amazing Zoos in Manchester to See Animals

Top 15 Amazing Zoos in Manchester to See Animals

If it weren’t for zoos, we can’t experience the wildlife and visit amazing animals. Fortunately, there are quite a handful of zoos near Manchester, and they’re quite exquisite when it comes to animal lineups and the overall vibe of the Amazon and Everglades. 

The UK has never been known to have dense and rich jungles, so the next best things are zoos. Are you excited to see wild cheetahs and lions on your next visit? Here are the top 15 exciting zoos in Manchester! 

Chester Zoo

Address: Chester CH2 1LE, United Kingdom

Contact Details: +441244380280

Website: https://www.chesterzoo.org/

Operating Hours: Daily 10 AM to 5 PM 

Located just outside of Manchester, the Chester Zoo is a must-visit for animal lovers. With over 35,000 animals from 500 species, this zoo offers an incredible experience. 

You can immerse yourself in natural habitats, from rainforests to savannahs, and marvel at the underwater life in the aquarium. 

Chester Zoo is also dedicated to conservation, participating in breeding programs and protecting endangered species. 

With activities for families and plenty of dining options, it’s an unforgettable adventure supporting wildlife preservation. 

Pro tip: 

For a unique experience at Chester Zoo, make sure to catch the daily ‘Meet the Penguins’ session. It’s an extraordinary opportunity to get up close and personal with these adorable creatures.

Blackpool Zoo

Address: E Park Dr, Blackpool FY3 8PP, United Kingdom

Contact Details: +441253830830

Website: https://www.blackpoolzoo.org.uk/

Operating Hours: Daily 10 AM to 5:45 PM

At Blackpool Zoo, you’ll encounter a diverse range of animals from around the world. From majestic lions to cheeky monkeys, there’s something for everyone. 

You can also explore their exhibits, designed to mimic natural habitats, and get up close to fascinating creatures.

One of the highlights of Blackpool Zoo is their interactive experiences. You can feed giraffes, meet penguins, and even handle some of the smaller animals— it’s a chance to connect with wildlife in a hands-on and unforgettable way.

Pro tip:

Blackpool Zoo is also passionate about conservation. They actively support conservation projects and work to protect endangered species. By visiting the zoo, you’re contributing to these important efforts and making a positive impact.

Knowsley Safari

Address: Prescot L34 4AN, United Kingdom

Contact Details: +441514309009

Website: http://www.knowsleysafariexperience.co.uk/

Operating Hours: Monday to Friday 10 AM to 5:30 PM; Saturday 10 AM to 6 PM; Sunday 10 AM to 6 PM 

Knowsley Safari is not your typical zoo. It’s an expansive safari park that allows you to get up close and personal with a wide variety of animals. 

Of course, you have the conventional mighty lions and playful monkeys to check out, and this place has it all too! As you drive through the park in your own vehicle, you’ll feel like you’ve been transported to the African savannah.

One of the highlights of Knowsley Safari is the chance to see the magnificent big cats in action. Witnessing a lion’s powerful roar or a cheetah’s lightning-fast sprint is a sight that will leave you in awe.

Pro tip:

If you’re lucky, you might even catch a glimpse of the elusive Amur tiger which is arguably Knowsley Safari’s best animal. 

Yorkshire Wildlife Park

Address: Hurst Ln, Doncaster DN9 3QY, United Kingdom

Contact Details: +441302535057

Website: http://www.yorkshirewildlifepark.com/

Operating Hours: Monday to Friday 9:30 AM to 6 PM; Saturday and Sunday 9 AM to 6 PM

The Yorkshire Wildlife Park offers an incredible experience, with a wide range of animals to see and learn about. From land animals to soaring birds, there’s something for everyone. 

Also, the park’s spacious enclosures mimic the natural habitats of the animals, giving them plenty of room to roam and thrive.

As you stroll through the park, you’ll encounter various exhibits that showcase different species. Don’t miss the opportunity to get up close and personal with the beautiful giraffes, or catch a glimpse of the adorable penguins as they dive and swim.

Pro tip:

Enter the lemurs’ habitat and observe these curious creatures in their natural environment. It’s an experience that will leave you feeling amazed and connected to the animal kingdom.

Blue Planet Aquarium

Address: Longlooms Road CH65 9LF, United Kingdom

Contact Details: +441513578804

Website: http://www.blueplanetaquarium.com/

Operating Hours: Daily 10 AM to 5 PM 

If you’re looking for a more aquatic zoo adventure in Manchester, then you’re in luck! You can dive into the fascinating world of marine life at the incredible Blue Planet Aquarium. 

As soon as you step inside, you’ll be transported to an aquatic wonderland. From graceful sharks to colourful tropical fish, the aquarium is teeming with a diverse array of marine creatures. 

Yes, you can also get close and tap on the aquarium glass to see mesmerising sea turtles and other marine life as they glide through the water, or marvel at the vibrant beauty of coral reefs.

Pro tip: 

You can feed and touch certain species under the guidance of knowledgeable staff members. It’s an incredible chance to learn more about these fascinating creatures and gain a deeper appreciation for their conservation.

Manchester Museum

Address: University of, Oxford Rd, Manchester M13 9PL, United Kingdom

Contact Details: +441612752648

Website: http://www.manchester.ac.uk/museum

Operating Hours: Tuesday, Thursday, Friday, and Sunday 10 AM to 5 PM; Wednesday 10 AM to 9 PM; Saturday 8 AM to 5 PM; Monday closed

This museum may not have a typical zoo, but it does have preserved animals that are either extinct or passed away then used as exhibits to ambassador the species. 

In its Zoology section, you’ll find some unique animals like arctic foxes, the Maharajah Elephant, and Maude the Tigon. 

These are incredible exhibits that once lived in Manchester and even stayed in the Belle Vue Zoo Park back in the day when it was still open in 1976—now that’s a neat fact for you! 

Pro tip:

For museums, it’s always better to join in on a group tour with others who are as interested to learn about the past wildlife with you! Fortunately, the Manchester Museum has in-house tour guides to walk you through the exhibits! 

Sea Life Manchester

Address: Trafford Palazzo in TraffordCity; next to the Trafford Centre, Trafford Park, Stretford, Manchester M17 8AS, United Kingdom

Contact Details: +441617492875

Website: https://www.visitsealife.com/manchester/

Operating Hours: Daily 10 AM to 5 PM

Another great marine-themed zoo is Sea Life Manchester, and it’s definitely a must-visit for anyone who likes wildlife in general! 

Sea Life is home to a diverse range of marine creatures. You can find different species of sharks and playful penguins too, and you’ll encounter a whole new world beneath the surface. 

The best part? You don’t need scuba gear to explore it all! There are also unique shows where actors swim underwater to give your children (or yourself) a delightful time. 

Examples of these are the Little Mermaid or divers’ show where you can see professionals interact with your favourite marine animals like sharks and sea turtles. 

Pro tip:

If you’re feeling brave, make your way to the mesmerising underwater tunnel. As you stroll through it, you’ll be surrounded by sharks and other wonderful creatures swimming overhead. 

The Garden House 

Address: Lakes Rd, Marple, Marple Bridge, Stockport SK6 7DH, United Kingdom

Contact Details: +441614278712

Website: http://thegardenhousemarple.com/

Operating Hours: Tuesday to Sunday 10 AM to 4 PM; Monday closed

Who says farm animals aren’t worth checking out? That’s right, the amazing Garden House is home to a lot of farm animals like pigs, cows, and ducks. 

You can also pet and feed them unlike stricter zoos where you can’t interact with the animals. What’s even better is the environment is safe, and there are local cafes and restaurants if you want to eat while viewing the amazing landscape of the place. 

Pro tip:

Always ask the caretakers and keepers before feeding the animals. While this isn’t your conventional zoo, there are still rules to be followed. 

Ponderosa Zoo

Address: Off Smithies Ln, Liversedge, Heckmondwike WF16 0PN, United Kingdom

Contact Details: +441924235276

Website: https://ponderosa-zoo.co.uk/

Operating Hours: Daily 10 AM to 5 PM

Ponderosa Zoo boasts an impressive collection of wildlife from around the globe. What’s fascinating about this zoo is they also feature animals outside of Africa like the Everglades in America and Australia’s jungles. 

From prowling big cats to playful primates, and everything in between, you’ll be in awe of the diverse range of animals here. The zoo is home to over 80 different species, each with its own unique charm and beauty.

But it’s not just about the animals at Ponderosa Zoo; the whole experience is designed to be fun and engaging. 

With interactive exhibits, feeding sessions, and even the chance to meet some of the animals face-to-face, you’ll be entertained from start to finish. Plus, the knowledgeable and friendly staff are always on hand to answer any questions you might have.

Pro tip:

The mornings are usually quieter, giving you more time and space to appreciate the animals up close and take some fantastic photos. Plus, you’ll have plenty of time to explore the entire zoo without feeling rushed.

Tatton Park

Address: Tatton Park Tatton Park, Knutsford WA16 6SG, United Kingdom

Contact Details: +441625374400

Website: http://www.tattonpark.org.uk/

Operating Hours: Daily 10 AM to 7 PM

Tatton Park Zoo is home to a diverse range of fascinating creatures, from big cats to giant reptiles. 

You can stroll through spacious enclosures and observe these incredible animals up close. Prepare to be awestruck as you witness the grace of cheetahs, the power of lions, and the curious antics of monkeys.

Aside from the captivating animal exhibits, Tatton Park offers a myriad of other attractions for visitors to enjoy. 

You can take a leisurely walk through the stunning gardens, explore the historic mansion, or even indulge in a picnic by the lake. The serene surroundings make it the perfect place to unwind and reconnect with nature.

Pro tip:

Don’t forget to check the schedule for special animal encounters and feeding times at Tatton Park Zoo. These interactive sessions offer a unique opportunity to get even closer to the animals and learn fascinating insights from the knowledgeable zookeepers.

Heaton Park

Address: Middleton Rd, Manchester M25 2SW, United Kingdom

Contact Details: +441617731085

Website: http://www.manchester.gov.uk/heatonpark

Operating Hours: 24/7

Heaton Park (heatons manchester) stands out as one of the most amazing zoos in the area. This hidden gem offers a delightful escape into the animal kingdom, right in the heart of the city.

One of the most remarkable aspects of Heaton Park is its stunning natural setting. As you wander through the zoo, you’ll be surrounded by lush greenery and picturesque landscapes, creating a serene and immersive atmosphere. 

It’s a refreshing change from the typical concrete and cages you might find elsewhere.

Pro tip:

If you’re visiting with kids, Heaton Park has something special in store. The zoo offers interactive activities and engaging talks, making it an educational and fun experience for the whole family. 

Trentham Monkey Forest

Address: Trentham Estate, Stone Rd, Tittensor, Stoke-on-Trent ST12 9HR, United Kingdom

Contact Details: +441782659845

Website: http://www.monkey-forest.com/

Operating Hours: Daily 10 AM to 4 PM

Probably the most unique zoo near Manchester, this hidden gem will make any animal lover go bananas with excitement—the Trentham Monkey Forest. 

This extraordinary zoo offers a one-of-a-kind experience that sets it apart from your typical animal sanctuary.

As you walk through the zoo’s forest (forest manchester) conservatory, prepare to be greeted by a mischievous troupe of Barbary macaques swinging from branch to branch. 

These playful primates are not confined to cages but roam freely in their natural habitat. It’s like stepping into their world, observing their social dynamics and witnessing their wild antics up close.

The immersive nature of Trentham Monkey Forest allows you to witness the genuine behaviour of these fascinating creatures. It’s a rare opportunity to see their intricate relationships, watch them groom each other, or witness their adorable babies frolicking around.

Pro tip:

The monkeys at Trentham Monkey Forest are wild animals, so it’s important to treat them with respect. Keep a safe distance and avoid touching or feeding them. 

Walton Hall and Gardens

Address: Walton Lea Rd, Higher Walton, Warrington WA4 6SN, United Kingdom

Contact Details: +441925262908

Website: https://waltonhallgardens.co.uk/

Operating Hours: 8 AM to 8 PM

Once you step into Walton Hall and Gardens, it’s as if it’s not a zoo to begin with. This place is filled with domesticated animals and a few wild critters like wild squirrels and hares that you can interact with! 

Unlike conventional zoos, this place seamlessly combines stunning botanical gardens (rhs garden bridgewater manchester) with an impressive collection of fascinating creatures. 

You can stroll by their lush terrains while admiring a diverse array of animal species like parakeets, woodpeckers, and chipmunks— talk about a one-of-a-kind adventure!

Pro tip:

Unlike most zoos or domesticated areas, the Walton Hall and Gardens aren’t that strict in feeding animals. Just be sure not to provide harmful substances to these critters. 

Gauntlet Birds of Prey Eagle and Vulture Park

Address: Manchester Rd, Knutsford WA16 0SX, United Kingdom

Contact Details: +441565754419 

Website: https://gauntletbirdsofprey.co.uk/ 

Operating Hours: Wednesday to Sunday 11 AM to 5 PM; Monday and Tuesday closed

One of my favourite zoos to visit is the Gauntlet Birds of Prey Eagle and Vulture Park. This unique park is home to large eagles and vultures that will leave you in awe— especially if you’re a bird lover like me! 

With their impressive wingspans and fierce presence, these birds are a sight to behold. You can take a stroll through the park, watch captivating flying displays, and even have the chance to hold one of these magnificent creatures on your arm. 

Pro tip:

If you’re feeling adventurous, consider booking a personal encounter with one of the birds. It’s a unique experience that will leave a lasting impression. 

Martin Mere Wetland Centre

Address: Fish Ln, Burscough, Ormskirk L40 0TA, United Kingdom

Contact Details: +441704895181

Website: http://www.wwt.org.uk/wetland-centres/martin-mere/

Operating Hours: Daily 9:30 AM to 6 PM

Lastly, the Martin Mere Wetland Centre is one that you shouldn’t miss if you’re an avid animal enthusiast. What’s unique about this place is most of the species you can find here are forest animals. 

This place is a haven for both wildlife and visitors alike. With its sprawling wetlands and diverse habitats, you’ll get to see a wide array of fascinating creatures up close. 

You can find a wide array of aquatic birds too from graceful swans gliding on the water to colourful ducks waddling about, there’s never a dull moment at Martin Mere.

But it’s not just about the birds here. The centre also houses other animal species like otters, beavers, and even flamingos! Yes, you heard that right— these elegant pink birds are a sight to behold as they strut around, showing off their vibrant feathers.

Pro tip:

Don’t forget your binoculars! As you explore the wetlands and wildlife at Martin Mere, having a pair of binoculars can take your experience to the next level.

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