And a lot of these sounds I let out when I found out that Ben for my surprise weekend/nameday getaway has planned to go and do Safari tour. Of course, do not expect Kruger national park or Moremi Game Reserve but still, judging by the European standards, it is impressive.
Park is called Beekse Bergen and you can either walk through the park, drive your car/join the bus tour or take a boat tour. Or you can do all of them (as we did it). I must say that the amount of animals that they have and how much freedom they have, is amazing. And we were lucky as well, as all the animals during our visit were quite active: chimpanzees got into some kind of gang fight (with fists, shouts and everything), chitas were so close to our car, that parking sensors were beeping like crazy and camels decided to scratch themselves against the bus next to us, which made the bus shake like a jelly 🙂
Beekse Bergen is situated in Hilvarenbeek, Netherlands. From Brussels it takes 1 hour and 30 minutes to get there by car. If you would like to use public transportation, use Belgian and Dutch public transport sites (train to Tilburg).
Park is open all year round from 10 in the morning till 16:00/16:30/17:00/18:00 depending on the month you go there. To see park fully with no running around, count approximately 5-6 hours. We were there in the middle of September: weather was perfect and there were not a lot of people. Which, of course, makes the experience more exciting.
Entrance ticket costs 19.95 eur during summer time and 13.95 eur during wintertime. This price involves all the possibilities to see the park (car/boat/bus/walk).
An extra cool option is spending the night in safari park (which initially was Ben’s idea, but unfortunately due to some circumstances we didn’t do it. maybe next time :)) in a camping together with a ranger that would explain more on animals and their life.
Of course, it is understandable that a person like me (who loves animals and everything) would not have a clear judgment on this and would say that this was one of the best days this year, but also Ben (reasonably cynical person) admitted that this park has exceeded all his expectations. So, it is going to be as interesting for children, as for grown-ups. It is my recommendation to go there :))
For more pictures from the park click here.