No trip to Jersey would be complete without a day at Durrell. Durrell Wildlife Conservation Trust is first and foremost is a wild life conservation site that caters to endangered species from around the world.
I’ve visited Durrell several times before but this time as a guest of Visit Jersey I was able to experience Durrell in a slightly different way, I was there to do their ‘winter experience’ which included feeding the meerkats, a sneaky look behind the scenes and a delicious picnic lunch.
On the day we visited Durrell it was blue skies and the sun was shining and perfect for a day outside with the animals. We arrived and ordered our picnic lunch at the cafe before heading out to see some of the endangered species they have on show.
As soon as you walk into Durrell the bear enclosure is right in front and we were lucky to spot one of the bears up on a tree. The bear has recently had a baby and you spot it on a hidden camera titled Den Cam.
We stopped to see the bat cave which I thought was awesome! There were so many bats hanging around and I couldn’t believe the wing span on some of them, I was blown away by these creatures and it was great to see them in day light.
We wandered around to see the gibbons and orang-utans just in time for their feeding time, the orangs are my favourite, I just love them! They feasted on some vegetables and one of the staff members gave us some info on these incredible creatures. It is so interesting to see how they interact with each other, there was a mother and baby outside feasting and the big male inside banging around and making sure you knew who was boss!
The gorillas were out in full force as well.
We then moved on to the main event which was part of the winter experience at Durrell. I got to feed some of the cute meerkats with one of the keepers. For the animals safety and obvious reasons we weren’t allowed in the enclosure, this is to ensure both we and the animals are safe and so the animals don’t contract any illnesses but we got to feed these little guys and they sure loved my GoPro!
Maddie the keeper who took us for the winter experience was so enthusiastic about her job, her personal interest was with the lemur’s so we chatted a lot about them and the other animals that Durrell conserve.
Maddie then took us ‘backstage’ to see some of the other animals from behind the scenes.
It is so great to see these animals interacting with their keepers and knowing that it is all in the name of conservation.
I just adored this bear at Durrell. Look at that face!
Our picnic had been made whilst we were looking around Durrell so once we were done seeing all the animals we headed for the cafe. We picked up our lunch and headed straight for the picnic tables outside to bask in the winter sunshine.
In our picnic was a hot drink of our choice, you could have tea, coffee or hot chocolate served in a fancy take away cup. Our sandwiches were ham and cheese plus we got some delicious scones with jersey cream and jam to top it all off.
The scones passed the delicious test as you can see from my husbands face. It was so lovely to enjoy the picnic in the sunshine and enjoy Durrell’s wildlife at the same time.
If you find yourself on Jersey (and you should because it is amazing) you must go to Durrell and certainly splash out on this experience. I loved meeting keepers and finding out about their passion for animals and conservation and it is clear how well the animals are looked after here. I don’t see it as a zoo at all, rather a very special place for very special animals.
You may have seen a new programme called ‘The Durrells’ on ITV recently, this is all about Gerald Durrell and his family during his early years and well worth a watch. Check out the other experiences you do can at Durrell here.
Disclaimer: My visit to Durrell was complimentary, thank you to Visit Jersey and Durrell for having me.
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