Wednesday, 18 July 2012

Family Days Out: Drusilla's Park (Review)

We were recently treated to a fantastic day out at Drusilla's Park in East Sussex.  Originally established as a tea rooms in 1922, the attractions and animals were added to boost trade, and the park has grown and grown, but remains a family-run business.  This unique character really comes through in how the place is run, and from initial contact well in advance to the last goodbye on our visit day, we were delighted with the service and professionalism of the staff.

In 2010, Drusilla's won the Tourism South East Awards' gold prize for Visitor Attraction of the Year, and I certainly wouldn't be surprised if they won it again this year.  After our recent less than happy experience at London Zoo, we were so pleased to see how well the animals, from mice to alpaca, are looked after at Drusilla's.

The large enclosures are all well kept, and the animals and birds seem happy and well cared for.  There is also a big focus on conservation and education work, all of which rather puts to shame the aforementioned bigger organisation.

The fun begins out in the car park, where there is a lovely little children's playground, which it was hard to tear Lara away from!  Then, as you go in to the park, you have the option to go straight to the immense children's play areas and the Thomas the Tank Engine train ride, or to go straight to the animals.  We went with the latter, but I think I would go the other way round next time purely to get rid of some frantic toddler energy and excitement!

Here are some of the lovely animals we saw, starting with mice and reptiles and moving on to the cute and fluffies.  For schools and home edders, there is masses of useful study information on the animals, and also a working farm area and a Masai area.

Lara peering in to the mouse house with a new friend

Gorgeous lemurs you can get up close to

Cheeky lemur baby who stole the keeper's walkie talkie and peed on her jacket!

When we got to the play areas, Lara had a whale of a time in the play parks, both inside and outside, and on the huge trampoline.

We also went for two rides on Thomas, which was great fun, even when the rain started!  Other characters such as Peppa Pig, Ben & Holly, Mike the Knight and Zingzillas wil also be appearing at Drusilla's over the summer holidays.  Something tells me we may well be making a return visit very soon...

We were at the park from 10am till nearly 6pm, and went round the animals twice, as well as spending a fair amount of time in the play areas, but to be honest I'm sure we could easily have spent the next day there and seen even more.  The only thing I would advise is to take a picnic, because we found the on site catering rather expensive, and there were some lovely picnic areas available.  This fantastic paddling area would be amazing on a sunny day!

We had a superb day, and would highly recommend Drusilla's to all age groups.  The park is open all year round with a variety of price bands dependent on the season, school holidays etc, which you can check here.  Even at peak prices, it is a fantastic value day out for the whole family - go!

Here are some more photos from our lovely day:

The ubiquitous meerkats!  Very cute though

Stunning flamingoes

Lara expected the prairie dogs to talk like in the TV show...

My favourites :o)

Gorgeous little desert fox species I can't remember the name of!

A final ride, and a kiss goodbye

Disclosure: We were provided with tickets to Drusilla's for the purposes of this review, but the words and opinions are my own.

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  1. Oh wow that looks like a fabulous day out! IF we are ever in the area we shall definitely pay a visit!

    Thanks for linking to family frolics :)


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