Last weekend we fancied a family day out, something I think we all needed, so on the morning of Sunday 8th July we got up, had breakfast and with the sun peeking through hinting at it being a bright, warm day we grabbed the sun cream, little ones hat and our sunnies and headed to Slimbridge Wetland Centre.
A little bit about Slimbridge WWT
The Wildfowl and Wetlands Trust was set up at Slimbridge by Peter Scott in 1946, Peter was a Olympic sailing medallist, broadcaster, well known, talented painter and founding chair of the WWF, he even drew their famous panda logo. Peter loved the open marshlands of great Britain and it’s mysterious feathery visitors so much so that he became a wildfowler and learnt how to protect the birds and their habitat. The Wildfowl and Wetlands trust at Slimbridge was opened to the public as a science and conservation centre where anyone could come and enjoy getting up close to nature. During Peters life WWT grew from strength to strength and has continued to do so since his death in 1989. Slimbridge WWT was the first of 9 Wetland centres in the UK and together they welcome a million visitors a year. Supporters, volunteers and specialist staff work tirelessly to protect wetlands and save beautiful Wetland wildlife from extinction through science, research and anything at hand. To find out more about the fascinating history follow the link …
Information source – History of Slimbridge WWF
We arrived at around 10:30 and made our way to reception to pay admission.
On the way to the entrance, across the bridge we spotted some feathery friends below, little one was keen to get a look.
As a child I loved feeding the ducks and birds on our visits to Slimbridge and so of course when I seen you could purchase the bags of grain in the lobby I simply had to get some! I think I was just as excited as Freya! We brought 2 generously filled bags and made our way out to start our little adventure.
There’s so much to explore and the scenery is absolutely beautiful. All three of us love animals and there is plenty of opportunities to get up close with the wonderful Wildlife, interesting talks and lots on offer for all ages including birdwatching, canoeing And even Land Rover safaris, something I think we must look into for our next visit!
This swan may be a little camera shy …
however we did manage to capture these…
Walking through Slimbridge WWT you come up close to such a wide range of beautiful wildlife.
Little monkey was absolutely in her element, she’s already a big animal lover and is so curious and has such an interest in birds or “cheep, cheeps”.
She was eager to start feeding the wildlife and we found the perfect feeding spot just off the track to dig into the bags of grain. Feeding the wildlife really added to the enjoyment of the visit, we all loved it! Freya started off by singling out one little grain at a time but soon resorted to throwing handfuls to the grateful cheep, cheeps and still we had enough to last the entire visit.
As we were walking through one thing Luke and I noticed was there is plenty of benches and seating areas located around the Wetland centre, that Sunday was sunny and rather hot which meant I really appreciated that there was plenty of shaded seating available, small touches like that make a huge difference for us, especially now we have little lady.
We made a pit stop into welly boot land, an adorable play area equipped with picnic benches, play equipment, plenty of paddling space and snack shack! All three of us took off our shoes and socks and enjoyed a paddle in the cool water.
Little one did end up getting a bit of a wet bum after crouching in the water, but it didn’t take long to dry off in the sun. When we eventually persuaded Freya to let us put her socks and shoes back on we got an ice cream and headed back out to explore some more.
Throughout the centre there is loads of stunning viewpoints, observatories and fascinating information all about the wildlife and habitats.
At lunch time we headed to the spacious Kingfisher kitchen, the food was delicious, me and Luke both chose a double Gloucester ham hock panini and Freya had a kids pick a mix meal, you can chose from a variety of options for the littlies pick and mix including sandwiches, crisps, fruit etc.
The kingfisher Kitchen has stunning views of the beautiful flamingo’s and when we’d finished lunch we headed out to take a closer look and continue are adventure around the wetlands centre.
I love that you can stray from the main walkway and explore the more secluded areas, it has a secret garden feel and despite being very popular the whole centre has such a wonderful, calm, peaceful atmosphere.
We spotted the puddle ducks…
More beautiful flamingos…
Luke found his throne…
We attempted a family photo…
Chilled out in the shade of the trees for a while…
Then continued are walk, by now Freya was getting quite tired and therefore was happy to lay back in her pram, by the time we got to the otters she was fast asleep, there was still more to see however Luke and I was also starting to feel tired and tea time was approaching so at this point we started to make our way back. Of course we had to take a look in the lovely gift shop which has so many beautiful goodies. We picked a rather adorable soft toy for little one, a duck, of course and made our way back home not long after.
This is the second time we have taken Freya to Slimbridge WWT and this time around the clouds cleared and we enjoyed sunny skies whereas the first, earlier this year, in February there was still a bit of a chill in the air, both days out were very enjoyable and I would agree that Slimbridge has so much to offer all year round!
We had such a lovely time at Slimbridge WWT and we will definitely be planning another visit, it’s a great family day out with so much to offer for all ages and I would highly recommend it to all.
If you’ve got this far then thank you so much for reading
This post was in no way sponsored by Slimbridge WWT and is not a paid review, all photos and opinions our honest and my own.