Have you ever wondered what happens at night at the zoo? Once all the visitors go home and the keepers are done for the day, there’s really no one left. And that’s when the animals – big and small – rule the roost. Last week, I had the opportunity to visit and stay over night at the ZSL London Zoo and sleep in a lodge right next to the lions.
The ZSL London Zoo Lodges are located right in the heart of the Land of the Lions. They have a very cute mini village of wooden huts that provide your accommodation for the evening.
The night tour started with a glass of prosecco and toasting what was to be a really fun and unique evening. Our guides for the evening were very attentive and were very knowledgeable. The tour started at the Asiatic lions, which are extremely endangered. I was really disturbed to hear from our guide that there are only several hundred Asiatic lions left in the wild, and they only live in the Gir Forest, India, in an area that is smaller than Greater London.
After visiting these magnificent beasts, we were given an evening tour around the zoo. It was so much fun to see what the animals get up to at night.
Around 8:30pm, we interrupted our night-time excursion for dinner at the zoo. The food was really delicious, with a wide variety of scrumptious options to choose from. We walked off our dinner with a further tour around the zoo. I really enjoyed feeding some of the animals – although I believe our dinner was way better haha – and was asleep by 10pm in our lodge.
After a good night’s rest in the lodge, we went for breakfast at 8:00am. Breakfast was very good, with an English breakfast style buffet and lots of pastries, cereals, juices and fruits. After breakfast, we visited the Penguin Beach, which was super fun. We also saw the statue of “Winnie the Pooh” bear! The famous Winnie-the-Pooh teddy bear stories were written by the English author Alan Alexander Milne. The stories were based on an actual Canadian black bear that used to live at the London Zoo in the 1920s.
We also attended one of the kitchens and saw how they prepare the meals for the animals. It was incredible to see all the different menus they have for each species. We also saw the monkeys – always fun little creatures to watch as they play – and the tour ended at 10am at the African Lions. The staff were extremely friendly, attentive and knowledgeable about all the magnificent animals.
Once the tour ended, we had the opportunity to carry on and explore the rest of the zoo. Overall, my experience was amazing and I had so much fun spending the night at the ZSL London Zoo Lodges next to the lions. (In the morning you can actually hear them roaring – thankfully my little cat Sienna was safely at home haha).
Find out more about the overnight ZSL London Zoo – Here