Yesterday, Myles and I decided to go out for the day somewhere outdoors as the weather was beautiful and we wanted to make the most of it on our only day off together. We love animals and love visiting places where we can get pretty close to them. With that in mind, we decided to go to Trentham Monkey Forest, a gorgeous woodland sanctuary in Stoke-on-Trent.
It is a very unique place to visit in the UK, as it’s the only place you can walk amongst 140 free roaming Barbary macaques! They literally walk right between you and will happily allow you to stand close by for a good photo. Look at this little guy posing!
With no cages or bars, the monkeys are completely free to roam the forest and live as they would in the wild. Once you enter the monkey zone, you can walk along the pathway through the forest and watch the monkey antics right in front of you. There are feeding times and talks with the staff, information boards and beautiful surroundings to enjoy. There are also many members of staff situated throughout the forest to help answer any questions you may have during your trip and to ensure the park rules are being followed.
We had so much fun watching the babies play and fight together, jumping over our heads from one branch to the next. It’s so nice to see endangered animals like these living like they would do in the wild.
During the feeding time talk, the staff throw about food and whistle for the monkeys to arrive. Only a few decided to emerge for us, but it was great to hear about their natural diets, where they come from and more about such fascinating little creatures. They have a lot more character than you think too!
Outside the monkey zone, there is the Banana Cafe, a kids play zone, The Jungle Shop and an information shelter with boards and screens showing more information on the macaques. On this particular day, they had stalls and a band singing animal songs like those from The Lion King.
It wasn’t what I expected, but I loved our little day out and if we’d had gone with children, I’m sure we’d have spend the whole day there.
Unfortunately, Barbary macaques are listed as an endangered species by the IUCN Red List, this is mainly due to loss of habitat and the illegal pet trade.
Trentham Monkey Forest does a great job by not only looking after the monkeys, but also providing visitors with a unique, interesting and educational experience. All whilst raising awareness and informing people of their involvement in conservation of the endangered wild Barbary macaques, and the research they do to help protect them.
I’d definitely recommend you visit, especially with kids as it does make a lovely family day out. We loved it! It’s good value for money and we really enjoyed watching them play fight and chase each other about.
Have you been here before?
See you next time!
Love Charlie x