Paignton Zoo Environmental Park

Paignton Zoo Environmental Park: Hours, Address, Paignton Zoo Environmental Park Reviews: 4.5/5

Paignton Zoo Environmental Park

Paignton Zoo Environmental Park
4.5
Nature & Wildlife Areas • Zoos
10:00 AM - 6:00 PM
Monday
10:00 AM - 6:00 PM
Tuesday
10:00 AM - 6:00 PM
Wednesday
10:00 AM - 6:00 PM
Thursday
10:00 AM - 6:00 PM
Friday
10:00 AM - 6:00 PM
Saturday
10:00 AM - 6:00 PM
Sunday
10:00 AM - 6:00 PM
About
Paignton Zoo Environmental Park is a conservation and education charity located in South Devon. With around 2,500 animals across 80 acres, we have more species than anyone else in the South West. These include: lions, tigers, giraffes, crocodiles, rhinos, lemurs, flamingos, meerkats, orang-utans, Komodo dragon... the list is endless! We also have indoor and outdoor play areas, the Jungle Express train, a seasonal bird show and numerous food and drink outlets. With something for guests of any age to enjoy, you'll need all day to experience what we have to offer! Paignton Zoo is a member of the British and Irish Association of Zoos and Aquariums (BIAZA) and the European Association of Zoos and Aquaria (EAZA).
Suggested duration
More than 3 hours
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Popular mentions

4.5
5,217 reviews
Excellent
3,347
Very good
1,222
Average
392
Poor
152
Terrible
105

Will
United Kingdom9 contributions
Brilliant day
Jul 2021 • Family
Lovely zoo; bigger than we expected. Lots of animals to see and they all seemed well looked after. Virtual talks available as well which was good. Pre-booking advised; we booked a couple of days in advance and availability was already low. I think it was sold out on the day. Cheetahs, lions, tigers, baboons, lemurs were the favourites!!
Written 30 July 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

TMR
London, UK24 contributions
Really enjoyed our visit. Great Zoo!
Jun 2021 • Couples
Excellent Zoo with a wide variety of well cared for animals. Really enjoyed the keeper talks which have started up again. A great day out for all the family !
Written 29 July 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
Hi, thank you so much for leaving your excellent review, we are so pleased that you and your family had a wonderful trip to Paignton Zoo. Thanks for supporting us and we hope to see you at Paignton Zoo in the future. Kind regards, the PZ team.
Written 30 July 2021
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Legg360
Exeter, UK7 contributions
Decent zoo but really untidy and dirty
Jun 2021 • Couples
Been to this zoo many times over the years and this has to have been the worse time. The place looked a mess with large areas unkept, grass so long you could not see the animals, windows so dirty it they almost looked forested. Parts have been barrier off including the giraffe house and lion viewing area, these areas were unacceptably dirty and untidy to see from the open area with random bits off wood and rubbish just left laying around, it looks like they haven’t been swept clean for months. It’s a very good zoo but for the price it was disappointing especially considering the state it now is in.
Written 28 July 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
Hi, thank you for taking the time to leave a review from your recent visit and we are sorry that you were disappointed. At Paignton Zoo we try to balance the conservation aims and efforts of our charity with the likes and preferences of our guests. Our enclosures are designed with our animals needs in mind, mimicking as close to their natural environment as we can, this may at times make it difficult to spot animals. When you visit Paignton Zoo, you’ll see plenty of examples of how we are managing our sites for the benefit of conservation, and helping our native species of plants and animals. Importantly, you’ll also see how we can all work together to encourage wild life, and wild places, in our communities, homes, and gardens. From bug hotels and bird boxes, to log piles and butterfly friendly planting; there’s something for every location, from window box and upwards. Because of this, in early summer it can look unkempt, but it is vital for the native species. The giraffe house is closed due to essential maintenance and only outdoor viewing is available for this enclosure. Like many others, we have navigated a very challenging time and are constantly reviewing changing guidelines, so hope you will understand that we are making every effort to ensure all our visitors enjoy a fantastic day out and adapting our approach wherever necessary. We do appreciate your feedback, without feedback directly from our guests, Paignton Zoo and our charity Wild Planet Trust, would not be able to deliver our message of conservation through customer experience to our visitors. Kind regards, the PZ team.
Written 30 July 2021
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

parker880
4 contributions
Average zoo compared to a couple of years ago
Jul 2021 • Family
We visited the zoo for the second time since 2016 and were quite disappointed in the lack of maintenance and care around the zoo. We were looking forward to the train which said it was under maintenance but its clear it has been out of action for a long time

The children enjoyed the parks and soft play but there is lots around the zoo looking very tired and sorry for itself. Lots of empty enclosures with signs saying new things coming soon but it looks very messy.

The monkey enclosures was very good and great views.

We did see lots of animals which was great but the zoo as a whole is looking quite sad and I wonder if covid 19 pandemic has had a huge impact which will hopefully start improving for them
Written 27 July 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
Hi, thank you for taking the time to leave a review from your recent visit, we are sorry that you were disappointed. Unfortunately the train is not currently running as it requires extensive repairs. This is not something that we have been able to complete as it needs to be carried out by external contractors who are not currently able to source the parts because of Brexit. Due to the cost and complexity of the repair we are currently reviewing our options, and at present we are not able to confirm whether the train will be running again in the future. As you’ll appreciate, Paignton Zoo has faced significant challenges over the course of the last year, and this has resulted in a number of changes to the range of species that we look after. With regards to the animals and birds here at Paignton Zoo, we are taking the opportunity to evaluate ‘who lives where’ and this has meant that some enclosures are empty whilst we move animals around and into improved new housing. We are pleased that you enjoyed our play areas and the monkey enclosure, and delighted that you saw lots of animals. We look forward to welcoming you back at Paignton Zoo in the future. Kind regards, the PZ team.
Written 28 July 2021
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Chelsea
Barnstaple, UK3 contributions
Awful will not return.
Jun 2021 • Family
After having to rearrange our booking a few times(no fault of the park) we finally made our booking today, after 2.5 hours driving we arrived at 9.30 to check in for 10, were one of the first 3 families through the door,and we managed to see a whole of 5 animals, there’s no organisation, and every animal is rammed. Just because the government has deemed it safe,covid is still a thing and this seriously needs addressing at Paignton zoo, we were the only people wearing masks.

inside bits over capacity, loads closed, when complaining to the zoo, they couldn’t care less and blamed it on the school holiday, as if there isn’t one every year. We were offered to go back in, but it was busier than when we first arrived so didn’t bother.

They have a cafe, where the staff are very polite, but very overpriced at £1.50 for a mini milk. £2.40 for a ‘latte’ or slight coffee flavoured milk. I actually clocked a bottle of out of date (25/5) coffee syrup also🤭

Will not return anytime soon.
Written 27 July 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
Thank you for taking the time to get touch about your recent visit, we are sorry that it was disappointing for you and your family. At Paignton Zoo we try to balance the conservation aims and efforts of our charity with the likes and preferences of our guests. Because of the nature and temperament of animals, sometimes they prefer to lay in shaded or grassy areas in the hot weather or go in covered areas if it’s wet or cold. Our enclosures are designed with their needs in mind, mimicking as close to their natural environment as we can, this may at times make it difficult to spot animals. The safety of our guests, staff, volunteers and animals is our utmost priority, even more so at this time with the pandemic. All of our staff are aware of the COVID-19 safety measures we have in place and will ask guests to follow them if necessary. We do have members of staff regularly patrolling the site to keep an eye on this. Unfortunately we just cannot control the behaviour and actions of every single guest and will continue to emphasise the importance that guests must adhere to the safety regulations in place around Paignton Zoo. We currently only have a very small number of exhibits closed either for guest safety under COVID-19 safety measures due to their size or for essential repair works. We will not open a particular area unless we can meet all of the required health and safety measures set out by Visit England and the Government. Full information on any empty or closed exhibits can be found on the Updates page of our website - we encourage all guests to have a read through this prior to their visit, so that they can be aware of what a zoo trip will involve. Please be assured that we are doing all that we can at this difficult time to make appropriate progress and redevelopments. We have spoken to our catering team and the date that you saw on the syrup bottle is the date the item was opened, and this particular product has a 12 month shelf life. Our food and drink prices are in line with other visitor attractions of a similar size. Thank you for your feedback, without feedback directly from our guests, Paignton Zoo and our charity Wild Planet Trust, would not be able to deliver our message of conservation through customer experience to our visitors. Kind regards, the PZ team.
Written 30 July 2021
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Matt B
Cinderford, UK28 contributions
Not worth the money
Jul 2021
We visited as a family as we were on holiday and staying at Finlake. There were 4 adults aged between 34 and 61 and 2 children aged 13 and 11. We enjoy visits to zoo's and safari parks but have never been to Paignton.

Unfortunately, we wont be visiting again in a hurry. I will explain. It was a hot day! Let's start with that - you can't blame staff for the animals wanting to stay in the shade or inside. Humans do, its natural. However, we saw hardly no animals - we did see some, including giraffes, monkeys and birds, but if you wanted to see lions, tigers or apes, you were in for a shock. However, this is a wild animal zoo and as mentioned I dont blame the staff for this.

The site was not kept well, overgrown branches, trees etc in walkways and so on. Staff did not appear happy (but the girl on the front desk was happy and greeted us with a smile, she was the only one though!) The site is not good for people with walking problems, - this should be highlighted more.

The parking was an issue, there is an overflow car park, which we needed to use, but there were spaces in the main car park so not sure why.

If the entrance fee was less, it might be worth it, but it isnt worth the money you pay. You can do many better zoos or wildlife experiences with better value for money! We stayed around 2 1/2 hours and decided to leave.
Written 26 July 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
Hi Matthew, thank you for taking the time to leave your review, we're sorry to hear that you were not happy with your recent visit to Paignton Zoo. We take great pride in the overall look and maintenance of our 80 acre site, aiming to achieve a more immersive and 'wild' feel with the landscaping and exhibits, rather than a barren look. Importantly, you’ll also see how we can all work together to encourage wild life, and wild places, in our communities, homes, and gardens. From bug hotels and bird boxes, to log piles and butterfly friendly planting; there’s something for every location, from window box and upwards. Because of this, in early summer it can look unkempt, but it is vital for the native species. We cannot guarantee that you will see every single animal at the exact time that you visit their exhibit. Our animals are free to choose whether to seek privacy/shelter or be outside where they can be seen by guests. There are plenty of indoor/undercover viewing areas where guests can try to spot some of our animals keeping cosy indoors. If an animal is not immediately visible, we recommend guests make time to pop back later in the day to try again - it will be worth the wait! We’re sorry to hear that you experienced difficulties regarding accessibility around the zoo. We do appreciate that our site, located in a valley, comes with steep inclines and we make every effort possible to navigate this for guests. We have full accessibility audits by Currie and Brown, DDA access audit and have highlighted on our accessibility page that some of our paths are quite steep and not easy to manage independently. We also offer an accessibility map of the site upon arrival which identifies clearly that a number of our paths have a steep incline / rough path surface, this page can be viewed here: www.paigntonzoo.org.uk/plan-your-visit/accessibility For ease of access for disabled guests we also offer one free carer to assist individuals who may need extra help around the zoo as well as hiring out electric mobility scooters and wheelchairs to enhance your visit, these can be booked in advance by calling our reception team. Please rest assured that we take all feedback very seriously and will look again at how we could improve as we try hard to make our site accessible to all. Thank you again for your feedback and for supporting us and our wildlife conservation work through your visit. Best wishes, the PZ team.
Written 30 July 2021
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

wesleycowley
Richmond, UK2 contributions
Dont go! Read this honest review waste of money
Jul 2021 • Family
Went here as a family with a 7 yr old by for the wort zoo ive ever been to overgrown pathways ,huge lack of staff half of the cages & enclosures are overgrown and empty a sad excuse for a zoo please dont wast your money read other reviews too no lions or tigers but mo signs to tell you they are not there the enclosures tell the story they havnt been there for a while the member of staff i asked was like a rabbit in the headlights and said she had seen them before when i asked yeah but are there any here today told me to ask at reception ! I undersatand weve been in lockdown but this is a rundown rip off conning public for a sub standard day out in return if there are no animals in enclosures please have signs saying so not conning people into thinking there is we spoke to at least 4 other familys who felt the same this place either needs a huge cash and staff injection or closing a real shame because it could be so good
Written 25 July 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Raveydavey1982
Taunton, UK36 contributions
Overall a good day
Jul 2021 • Family
We are regular visitors to the zoo and have to agree with previous reviews in that for this trip it felt like there were lots of enclosures and cages empty, some just overgrown, and you spent a long time trying to work out if there was actually an animal to see or if it was just another empty enclosure.

That being said the zoo is well laid out with good facilities. Plenty of picnic benches and places for the kids to play. Good parking, staff are friendly and helpful and the food is decent quality. We always have a nice visit.

Perhaps they could just put a sign up saying “nothing to see” when there is nothing to actually see.
Written 25 July 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Andrew E
Telford, UK7 contributions
What a fab find!
Jul 2021 • Family
After reading a few negative reviews on here about the zoo I was apprehensive about going, but I'm so glad I did. What a lovely place! So many nooks and crannys my 2 little ones (age 7 and 5) loved exploring.

We were there 4 and a half hours in total. Plenty of space for us to find a secluded spot to have our picnic and lots of play areas on site for the kiddies. Toilets were ample and clean.

We all feel exhausted after a lot of walking, which isn't a bad thing. It has felt like a full day out with the family, which we all desperately needed. I would say around some of the enclosures were slightly overgrown, but I personally enjoyed that as it added to the experience of feeling you're in the wild.

Some enclosures were closed (nocturnal and reptile) but that was to be expected given current circumstances, but we still found plenty to do. The orangutans were a personal favourite and not to be missed!
Written 25 July 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Haimi A
1 contribution
Not impressed
Jul 2021 • Family
Very expensive , Unable to see most animals as either they are sleeping inside or hiding somewhere. No elephant any more. Unable to see the Rhino, Lion and few more others. Kids didnt enjoy it much. If animals are sleeping in specific time and not shown specially lunch time, tickets should have been discounted. Not worth of the money. I dont recomend it.
Written 24 July 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

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