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Explore the Animal Kingdom in Wales

Tigers, Penguins, Alligators and Jellyfish. All in Wales? You won’t believe it until you see it.

You may think Wales isn’t the kind of place you’d come across Tigers, Penguins. Alligators or Jellyfish. Wales is riddled with lots of exotic animals, but you better watch where you step because they are not all friendly. Wales is full of animal-themed places to visit like, Zoos, Aquariums, Bird Centres. Although you don’t have to experience these magnificent animals solely in captivity, Wales is full of Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty which are protected by the Welsh government from urbanisation due to their landscape value. The protection these sites are under has allowed for the nature in these ecosystems to flourish. As a way of showing our appreciation that areas like these still exist and have been protected from modernisation, we will be kick-starting our list off with some of these areas and what kind of wildlife call these places home.

The Isle of Anglesey, is a great example of natural wildlife in Wales, starting off the isle, Dolphins and Seals make a regular appearance, but the Isle of Anglesey isn’t their home turf, this belongs to the puffins, who just off the coast from the Isle have their very own island, aptly named ‘Puffin Island’. Unfortunately, unless you’re quite the strong swimmer you won’t be able to visit the island and actually step foot, Welsh laws do not allow members of the public to venture onto the island but there are multiple boat trips company that take multiple groups of visitors on a round trip of the island. Seacoast Safaris offer a range of boat tours around Puffin Island, offering a range of boat sizes, carrying 54, 34 or a smaller 12 passengers. The latter of the three is a much shorter trip only an hour in duration. The trips are modestly priced and won’t break the bank, definitely worth it for the fantastic snaps you’ll get.

Seacoast Safari boat full of passengers on its way to Puffin Island

Moving onto more exotic animals that we promised you, The Welsh Mountain Zoo is home to everything from Alligators to Tigers.

View from The Welsh Mountain Zoo

The Welsh Mountain Zoo, AKA the “National Zoo of Wales”, is the oldest and most established Zoo in Wales. Coming from humble beginnings as a tiny family-run enterprise in 1963 by the Jackson family. The Zoo is made up of 37 acres of rich green terrain which overlooks Colwyn Bay and the Carneddau mountains in North Wales. It is truly one of the most beautiful and distinctive settings for any UK Zoo, making it one of the most unique days out to a zoo you will ever have. The view is only a fraction of what will make you have a great day up the mountain zoo, with over 140 species in their collection, the zoo has attracted visitors from all over totalling a staggering eight million visitors to date. Through all their efforts to. create a fantastic day for people visiting far and wide, conservation efforts remain at the heart of the zoo’s ethos, as well as the survival of their animals and the habitats they come from.

Red Panda at The Welsh Mountain Zoo.

The Zoo is home to two Snow Leopards that are classed as vulnerable, but it is fantastic to hear that the zoo has been able to successfully breed these two beautiful creatures aiding in conservation across the globe. The Zoo’s conservation efforts don’t cease there however, two Sumatran Tigers are also lucky enough to call the zoo their home. These extremely rare tigers come from the island of Sumatra just off the coast of Indonesia unfortunately though they are classed as endangered, due to the fact that there is only an estimated 400 of them left in the wild. There is one more species of animal that completes the family of big cats found at the Welsh Mountain Zoo. The Margays, there are two of them at the zoo, considered by many to be one of the more mysterious members of the “cat family”. Donning a brown and yellow coat with dark spots and around the same size as a domestic cat these guys have stealth on their side with most of their prey in the wild not knowing they are being hunted until it is too late.

Venture 430 feet back down to sea level and a bit further to start your journey at the “SeaQuarium at Rhyl”. Home to hundreds of species of aquatic animals, separated into 9 different pools, as well as their special outdoor cove home to their harbour seals. This exhibit holds 330,000 litres of water for the seals to explore. It is sure to entertain anyone who visits for the day.

Seal at SeaQuarium, Rhyl

The aquarium’s Deep Ocean zone provides visitors with the opportunity to immerse themselves in the life of their aquatic friends, as they watch sharks and eels glide through the 160,000-litre tank.

Deep Ocean Zone

Experience an exhibit never before displayed in North Wales before, the Moon Jellyfish, found all over the globe in warm climates near coastlines in the Atlantic, Pacific and Indian Oceans. Named after their ghostly, translucent bells, these fascinating jellies can be seen in loads of different colours; yellow, green, blue and many more colours which you can pick from with the help of LED light displays around the tank.

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