Days Out

Snow Leopard
Sep 20

Let’s be realistic…living in the UK, there’s a handful of weeks in the year that we can enjoy a family day out in the glorious sunshine…the rest of the time, there’s a 50% chance it will be raining!

With this in mind, it seems sensible that destinations such as Marwell should be geared up to deal with British weather. But after two trips to Marwell in pretty miserable weather, we’ve found this sadly isn’t the case. On both outings we’ve been left feeling a bit short changed – parting with an entry fee of £16 per adult should really leave you with a more fuzzy feeling on departure.

While I’m sure there are lots of animals living at Marwell, they don’t seem to want to come out on a rainy day! As a consequence, on both of our trips to Marwell, we’ve been a bit disappointed with the lack of animals to see. It becomes a bit difficult to entertain a toddler at a zoo in the rain when you’re walking from one empty enclosure to another. Of course we did see some animals and my favourite has to be the snow leopard as pictured, and Little I was fascinated by the penguins and giraffes who thankfully didn’t seem bothered by the British weather.

A note of caution: Marwell features several treetop walks and viewing platforms, but in the rain the timber can get very slippery. We saw quite a few children taking nasty tumbles on these walkways, and it really is something that Marwell needs to be better aware of.

The tractor train was easily the highlight for Little I, which thankfully had a canopy roof and kept us dry while we took a trip all around the wildlife park. There’s also a lovely miniature steam train that you can ride on, but at £2 per person, it’s an additional expense on top of an already pricey day.

There are a couple of small playgrounds for younger children, but being out-of-doors, they were way too soggy for a two-year-old to run around on. This of course didn’t go down well with Little I and she was asking to go to the swing park all day long!

Despite the criticism that we had of Marwell, we still had a lovely family day out and certainly made the most of what we could while we were there. I’m sure it’s a totally different story in the sunshine – it’s just a shame that we seem to be jinxed with the weather!

About the Author

Wendy McAuliffe

Social media & online PR consultant and trainer, and ex-journalist. Founder and Director of Populate Digital and Mum of two. Living by the sea in Bournemouth. @wendymcauliffe.

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