2015 has certainly been a busy time for Noah’s Ark! Christmas is the perfect time of year to reflect on all the wonderful things that have happened over the last 12 months, so where shall we start?
Well, we’d like to thank our visitors who came to us in record numbers this year! Noah’s Ark welcomed over 200,000 visitors though our gates this year, our highest attendance to date, with an increasing number travelling to see us from overseas.
We had super-busy bank holidays at both Easter and at the end of the summer in August, plus our ever-popular nativities proved to be huge hits once again this Christmas. Finally the year was rounded off in royal style with a very special visit from HRH The Princess Royal, as she officially opened our flagship Elephant Eden habitat. We were very pleased to receive praise for our work with the elephants from our royal visitor – something we are especially proud of here at Noah’s Ark as we have an on-going commitment to these marvellous, majestic animals.
If you’ve visited Noah’s Ark this year, you will have hopefully found it better-equipped, tidier and more clearly signed. That’s because we’ve put a lot of time and effort into improving the park’s facilities – from the play areas and the toilets to the general presentation and signage around the zoo. We endeavour to give all visitors to Noah’s Ark a professional and well-equipped experience and we always welcome your feedback. In fact why not let us know how we’re doing next time you’re here?
New year opening times
Noah’s Ark is closed for just 2 weeks over the Christmas period, reopening for the New Year on Saturday 9th January. And remember that a 20% discount still applies for the whole of January, so why not beat the post-Christmas blues and save some pennies in the longest month of the year, kick-starting 2016 in the best way possible with a trip to see our amazing animals?!
So what have we got in store for visitors in 2016?
Our Andean Adventure is set to become one of the largest and enriched habitat for bears in the UK, with important conservation, education and research benefits. Visitors in 2016 will be able to watch them from special viewing areas, including an elevated platform so you can get a bird’s eye view of the action! Features in the exciting new habitat will include caves, climbing frames, an artificial river with a shingle shore, hills and a private heated house for cubbing – we can’t wait to see those new little bear babies!
More work will continue on planning a brand new Visitor Centre and Shop at the entrance to the zoo where our current ticket offices are. With increasing visitor numbers and the needs for conference facilities, we are scheduling in the building of a purpose-built facility to ensure visitors have an improved welcome on entry and more choice in an enlarged gift shop. Work may begin later in 2016, or we’ll firm up plans for a 2017 start.
Either way, more information will be coming out in 2016 so keep your eyes peeled!
We’ll also be making continuous improvements to our play areas, toilets, exhibits and kiosks. We’re adding a new set of toilets next to the Andean Adventure area to anticipate demand around the zoo on busy days.
We also have a number of educational developments taking place in the New Year, making Noah’s Ark a must-visit destination for learning outside the classroom. New workshops and outdoor education options will be ready to book in 2016 – come and experience a day at the Zoo! We look forward to welcoming you soon!