Paradise Park, Hayle
Home to all sorts of birds and animals, Paradise Park is West Cornwall’s largest wildlife sanctuary. With penguins, macaws, eagles, otters, goats and red pandas, there is plenty to see and learn. Ideal for all the family, Paradise Park also has a huge indoor soft play zone, the JungleBarn, and beautiful, exotic gardens to explore.
Paradise Park started out in 1973 as ‘Bird Paradise’, a tropical bird garden set up by owners Mike and Audrey Reynolds. As the years passed, the Park became a home for many endangered species, and grew with the addition of several endangered animals including the red squirrel and red panda. The Reynolds family and Paradise Park established the World Parrot Trust and Operation Chough, and many been involved with many other projects, including the Black Honey Bee Project.p>WHAT IS THERE TO SEE AND DO?
The main attraction at Paradise Park is the many beautiful and colourful bird species – parrots, flamingos, kookaburras, toucans and Cornish choughs to name a few. Of course there are also lots of animals here too, including pygmy goats, guinea pigs, sheep and miniature donkeys down on the Fun Farm – don’t forget to buy a bag of goat food on your way in, the goats are always hungry!
Each day during the main season, there is a busy timetable of events to get along to, starting with penguin feeding at 11am. If you are lucky, you might get selected to help the keepers hand out the fishes! Otter feeding is just after, at 11.15am;the Eagles of Paradise show off their amazing flying skills at around midday; the Flight of the Rainbows takes places at 2pm (a hands-on feeding experience with the friendly little Lorikeets); this is followed by the Free Flying Bird Show at 2.30pm (including beautiful Macaws); and finally, the penguins are fed again at 3pm.
The JungleBarn is a fantastic addition to the Park, providing year-round rainy-day entertainment for little ones. With a ball pool, demon drop slides, astro slides and soft play zones (plus a separate section for toddlers), you will have a hard time trying to get the kids to leave! The JungleBarn has its own café and seating area (complete with newspapers for Mums and Dads), and jungle-themed party rooms ideal for birthday celebrations.
The exotic gardens are an attraction in themselves, with many unusual species such as Chatham Islands Forget-Me-Nots and Bottlebrushes in the Australian Aviaries. The Gazebo Garden is home to Eucalyptus, Astelia and Palms – and in the Butterfly Garden grow Buddleia. The Parrot Jungle is filled with bamboo and tree ferns, and the Bee Garden is home to dandelions and honeysuckles.
When the sun is shining, there is no nicer place than Paradise Island to sit and enjoy a picnic. Just outside the JungleBarn, this large lawned area has benches and an outdoor play area with slides and swings.
If you don’t fancy bringing your own food with you, though, the Otter Pool Café is open throughout the year, serving a range of snacks and light meals (and roast dinners during the winter months!).
Be sure to have a ride on the Jungle Express Train, and don’t miss the gift shop on your way out – a great place to pick up a souvenir of your visit or a unique Cornish gift for someone special.
*** NEW FOR 2016: The Dinosaur Quiz Trail! ***
Birds evolved from dinosaurs after all, so this summer, see how many answers you can find hidden around the Park and claim your official ‘Paradise Park Professor of Palaeontology’ Certificate!
OPENING TIMES AND ENTRY PRICES
Paradise Park is open every day except Christmas Day, from 10am. During the summer (28th March to 2 November), last admission is at 5pm; the rest of the year, last admission is at 3pm (due to fewer daylight hours). Entry prices are as follows (as at March 2016):