Longleat ~ The Blonde B

27 March 2015


After feeding the penguins we had the rest of the day to explore Longleat

We left Penguin island and I found a door that caught my eye

Now I'm not one to be attracted to doors but this one was special...

The door that leads to the Secret Garden

I couldn't help but take a peek

Are you coming with me?

The Secret Garden led us to the grounds of Longleat Estate

A garden bursting with love, beautiful fountains and gorgeous greens

That's probably why I was never accepted in to Cambridge...

The gardens led us to a trail advertising Jungle Boat Cruises around Longleat lake

We joined the queue and soon we were off

The Jungle Cruise was the only chance to see Longleat's sea lions and hippos

The hippos are notoriously lazy and they were back in their enclosure having a siesta

But these fun guys were full of energy and ready to play!

The sea lions are believed to be the only colony of California sea lions anywhere in the world to live in freshwater

The sea lions also share their home with Nico the 54 year old silver-back gorilla

Gorillas life-span in captivity is around 40 years old, but Nico was a good 14 years older than that

The old fella has his own island in the middle of Longleat lake and spends his days lounging in front of his flat-screen TV watching Spongebob square pants - no word of a lie!

The next big attraction is the drive-thru safari - it was the first drive-thru safari of its kind outside Africa and completely revolutionised animals in captivity were kept and looked after.

First it was the cheeky monkey enclosure

And when I say cheeky, I mean extreeemely cheeky, naughty, trouble-makers
They stole antennas, people's wind-screen wipers, clambered all over their roofs, bonnets, hung from the wing mirrors and even balanced on tops of the cars whilst they were in motion


Now I can see how monkey's get their name

After getting our car demolished, we carried on with our safari

I think we visited Longleat at just the right time - when the children are still at school

We didn't have to queue for anything and we managed to drive through the safari with relative ease, but I can imagine in the summer months this place gets packed!

Today has just made me start planning a new adventure to proper safari in South Africa


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