ZooParc de Beauval, Saint Aignan
ZooParc de Beauval is one of the best zoological parks in France, if not the world!
Located at Saint-Aignan in the Loir-et-Cher department of France, ZooParc de Beauval is quite commonly known as just Beauval Zoo and is a truly wonderful place to visit. There’s a huge variety of different types of animals at the zoo including Giant Pandas which cannot be found anywhere else in France other than at ZooParc de Beauval.
Our visit to ZooParc de Beauval
We visited ZooParc de Beauval during our holiday to Les Alicourts Resort in 2016. We had visited Les Alicourts campsite in 2015 and our eldest had seen a leaflet for the zoo and wanted to visit when we returned in 2016.
The zoo is located just over an hours drive from Les Alicourts campsite and we’d recommend you set out as early as possible if you’re planning to visit. Beauval is such a massive zoo that you really do need to spend the whole day there to make the most of it.
We set off fairly early as we thought we’d probably run into a lot of traffic en route as it is such a popular attraction. We were quite surprised to have a fairly clear journey, although the last few miles did incur a small amount of traffic jams.
There is ample parking around the zoo and although we only arrived around 30 minutes after the park had opened, we were still in car park 6 so you can see by this that it’s a very popular place to visit.
The car parking and zoo are very well laid out with plenty of staff available to help. We were also pleased to see security staff present, who were checking those with rucksacks and the ticket booths ensured that we only waited a few minutes before entering the zoo.
If you’re planning to visit ZooParc de Beauval, you can book your tickets prior to arrival by visiting their website. We didn’t bother as you only save €1 per ticket but we can see the benefits of booking as it may save you a few minutes.
Now if you look at the prices you may think that it’s quite an expensive place to visit. We are a family of 5 and for us to enter it cost approximately €133 which at our time of travel was around £115 however there are some important factors to take into account.
Firstly you really will get a full days worth of animal fun. The zoo is so large and there are so many animals there it really will blow you mind! Secondly some of the animals you’ll see at ZooParc de Beauval you will simply struggle to see anywhere else. Finally, when you consider that a visit to Longleat Safari Park in the UK would cost our family of 5 around £127 (which is inclusive of a 15% discount) it really is value for money. We’ve visited Longleat Safari Park in the past and there really is no comparison. ZooParc de Beauval beats it hands down.
Animals at ZooParc de Beauval
One of the biggest attractions at the zoo are the Giant Pandas. They were one of the animals that both we and our children really wanted to see as none of us had seen them in real life before.
ZooParc de Beauval’s variety of big cats were also massively impressive. With 30 different species of big cats calling the zoo home, felines such as African Lions, pumas, tigers, panthers, jaguars and many many more can be found here.
One of our favourite areas of the zoo was the primate zone. There are lots of different types of apes and monkey available to see and they always seem to be able to put on a brilliant show. The stunning Gorillas were quite playful and the chimpanzees spent their time running around and making fun of the visitors. One particular chimp sat within his enclosure and appeared to be posing for the visitors. We found it highly amusing when one of the visitors to the zoo was spending more time talking to his friend than watching the chimps. This particular chimp was watching him, picked up a handful of straw before throwing it at the window as if to show his annoyance at the visitor not paying him attention.
The Orangutan was equally funny, having covered his head with straw in a comical pose.
One of the other big attractions at Zoo Beauval was the show, “L’Odyssée des lions de mer”. During March to November you can see the sea lions at play during their water based show.
There were so many animals to see, we really can’t list them all but you can rest assured we spent over 6 fun filled hours at the zoo and still didn’t see everything that was on offer.
If you fancy a really fun filled day out and want to give both yourselves and your children a trip to remember, please make sure you visit ZooParc de Beauval!