If you are looking for an enjoyable day out which offers you the chance to get up close to some animals and wildlife in north Norfolk then here are some top suggestions of places to visit:-
The Amazona Zoo is less than 30 minutes drive from the Harper, one of the leading north Norfolk hotels and is one of the most popular attractions in the area. It is home to 200 different tropical animals from South America and as well as being a fun day out it is also an educational one with focus being on the animals and the challenges they face in their natural habitats.
Happisburgh Owl Barn
An excellent option for those staying in any of the hotels in Holt, Norfolk, the Happisburgh Owl Barn offers a unique experience; they are only open to those who have pre-booked and visitors are treated to two hours with some wonderfully tame owls including a European Eagle Owl, a pair of Tawny Owls and a melanistic Barn Owl; an owl born with a rare genetic mutation which occurs 1 in every 100,000 owls with none surviving in the wild. Each experience is a private viewing and is a lovely way to get up close to these beautiful owls in a relaxed environment.
Redwings Horse Sanctuary
Located in Aylsham, the Redwings Horse Sanctuary is home to 50 rescued horses, donkeys, mules and ponies. Entry is free although donations are always gratefully received and the sanctuary is surrounded by beautiful countryside. There is also a playground and café on-site as well as special events held during the school holidays.
Thrigby Hall Wildlife Gardens
Thrigby Hall is a little further down the coast than some of the other attractions mentioned here but if you like big cats then it’s a real treat to visit. Thrigby is home to Sumatran Tigers, a very rare species and there is a Tiger Tree Walk which allows you the chance to look down on these fascinating animals. Aside from the big cats there are also primates, red pandas, meerkats, otters and lots of reptiles. One of the interesting things about Thrigby is that it is a ‘progressive zoo’ which means that they work with specialists to try and breed rare and endangered animals in captivity.
Hunstanton SEA LIFE Sanctuary
In the far north of the county you will find the Hunstanton SEA LIFE Sanctuary; a seal rescue centre. The centre works to rescue, rehabilitate and release injured seals and pups from the colony at nearby Blakeney Point as well as being home to a number of other marine life and exhibits. It is possible to see some of the seals who are currently being treated by the centre as well as other highlights which include Ernie, the Green Sea Turtle and Alan, a Bosc Monitor Lizard.
Church Farm is a working farm located in Stow Bardolph and it is open to members of the public every day. Here you can enjoy animal encounters, tractor rides, an indoor and outdoor play area and the chance to see some traditional farm animals up close.