Sun 7 Sep 2014
Yesterday my husband and I took our daughter, who is almost 2, to visit Edinburgh Zoo for the first time.
We got there early, which meant it was nice and quiet when we first arrived, and there was only a short queue for tickets. The zoo is built on a hill, so it was quite a struggle in parts with a buggy, but we managed. We took a clockwise route around the park, heading up towards Penguin Rock for the first highlight of the day. As we approached we could see all the penguins swimming through large glass panels under the pool. We were all fascinated to see them fly through the water.
As we continued along our walk we saw various apes and monkeys, which were definitely my daughter’s favourites. She was constantly giggling as she saw them playing, jumping and swinging. Up at the top of the hill were all the big African animals – lions, tigers, other big cats, zebras and antelopes. Some of the cats were hard to spot, but we got a really great view of a jaguar, which came right up to the glass.
At lunch time we went to the Grasslands Restaurant, a diner with a canteen service. I had Lamb and Mint Sausage Casserole with Creamy Mash and my husband had Macaroni Cheese and Chips. (My daughter had a packed lunch I brought with us). The 2 meals plus drinks came to £18. The food was nice enough, but it could have been hotter.
On the way back down the hill we saw the chimpanzees, sun bears, birds and meerkats. We saw many more animals than this, but I couldn’t possibly list them all. Unfortunately we didn’t see the famous giant pandas. Their enclosure was closed off as the female is possibly pregnant and is being closely monitored.
I hadn’t visited the zoo for a long time. They have made lots of changes over the years and the enclosures have been improved a lot. I remember thinking some of the animals looked bored before, but now they have more interesting things to do. There are also better view points for visitors to get up close to them.
Tickets were £16.50 per adult and children under 3 go free. Although expensive, we felt it was worth it. We had a wonderful day out, and it was so much more fun with an excited little girl to show around. I’m looking forward to taking her back again soon!
Edinburgh Zoo, 134 Corstorphine Road, Edinburgh, EH12 6TS