Slimbridge Wetland Centre
If you haven’t heard of Slimbridge Wetland Centre before then let me explain. It is a wetland and wildlife reserve located between Bristol and Gloucestershire. It is home to 1000s of birds and different wildlife species such as otters, frogs, toads and newts.
We were super lucky to be invited to Slimbridge and today on the blog I share with you some of our highlights and tips and tricks for having the best time!
Slimbridge opens at half 9 and we got there just after 10. There is a huge free car park and toilets are located here too. Perfect for toddlers who seem to hold it in until the last minute.
After we got our tickets we headed to Toad Hall. Inside was a small soft play area, games and a number of amphibians.
I love frogs so I really enjoyed this bit. I really like the newts as well and caught this one just chilling out.
Next we headed outside and we were really lucky to have dry, warm weather. Wooden ramp ways guide you through Swan Lake.
It is aptly named as there are loads of swans and other ducks and birds to be seen here. The cygnets were just turning and b remembered this from the Ugly Duckling story.
After you pass the lake, Welly Boot Land is straight ahead.
If you have little ones then this is a must. It is essentially a play area with a stream flowing through. The ground soft and squidgy so you can take shoes and socks off without any worry. It was still nippy though so we took b’s welly boots. He still managed to get drenched and needed a full trouser and sock change. It was lots of fun though and we enjoyed some of our picnic here.
After welly boot fun we headed over to see the flamingos. Unfortunately they are kept in at the moment and I believe this is because of the threat of avian flu. B particularly liked the flamingos and told me he thought they looked like prawns!
And he tried perfecting his standing on one leg trick:
We followed the map up to the South lake discovery hide. There were a lot of people in there trying to get super duper photos so we didn’t stay too long with our over excited toddler.
Feeding the Otters
One bit I was really looking forward to was seeing the otters. And they didn’t disappoint. We were just in time for feeding at the otter pool too. They were so cute and we watched them show off their incredible swimming skills.
Another area I really enjoyed walking through was the Tropical House. I enjoyed this part as the birds were really close up in the water. There were some amazing colours too and we really liked the birds that looked like they were walking on stilts.
It was fun to observe and watch them up close.
play Time and picnics
By midday we were hungry and took a rest in the play park at the far end of the reserve. There is a kiosk that sells various snacks, drinks and ice cream, and there are toilets here.
The playground was complete with a wooden tower, slides and a sand pit for treasure hunting.
We had the rest of our picnic there and enjoyed the sunshine. It was actually fairly warm. Spring is on its way!
We ambled back through the Tundra area. The colours, flowers and birds were all beautiful and b enjoyed collecting sticks along the way. And then he got bitten by something…we’re not sure what exactly but it bit him on the wrist and it swelled up fairly quickly. He was pretty upset and we took him to the shop to see if they had anything for bites and stings. And they did! Fortunately he was distracted by the toys and gifts and he soon calmed down.
Have you been to Slimbridge before? We were really impressed with everything it had to offer and it was only when we got home and I took a proper look at the leaflet that I realised we probably only got a third of the way around. We didn’t take the pram and after b got bitten, he’d had enough of walking. I’d love to return though in the summer and when the flamingos are allowed out. I can imagine the colours would be amazing!
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Disclaimer: We were invited to Slimbridge to review the centre. All thoughts and opinions are honest and my own.