Pairi Daiza Animal Park
In Old Persian Pairi Daiza means “enclosed garden”, an old name for paradise. Reality is not that far away! The animal park Pairi Daiza, located between Mons and Ath in the province of Hainaut, harbours over 5,000 animals and stretches out over more than half a million square metres. The diversity inside the park is exceptional and will charm all ages.
The old Cambron Abbey is now part of the Pairi Daiza wildlife park; that is why the site does not at all emit an industrial look and feel. The explorer’s journey starts immediately on entering the park.
We get to ‘La Vallée de la Source’ where we find many birds (of prey). Enthusiasts will be enchanted by the daily falconry show. All information is provided on panels in front of every cage; where do the birds come from, does it concern a dangerous (or endangered) species,... In some cases it is possible to caress the birds.
Pairi Daiza has been divided into several ‘worlds’, each with its own characteristics, animals and decoration. We arrive in ‘La Terre du Froid’, followed by ‘Le Royaume de Ganesha’. The latter is – in our humble opinion – the most interesting of the entire park. The Asian temples, beautiful gardens and rice fields inhabited by the most extraordinary animals; it’s truly an amazing view.
Next up: Africa! And of course the Big Five are indispensable: we find the rhinoceros, the African elephant, the lion, leopards and buffaloes. In one word: spectacular! Right next to them we see a funny looking giraffe eagerly greeting the visitors.
‘La Cité des Immortels’, the aquarium, the crypt of bats, the playground,... It all ensures an absolutely memorable day in the Pairi Daiza animal park.
We were pleasantly surprised by the diversity of the restaurants inside the animal park. Every restaurant has its own style and menu: gastronomic, Italian, Asian, African,... Prices, however, are quite steep.
+ animal well-being comes first; no elephant will be forced into the water just to amuse the visitors;
+ it is possible to very closely approach the animals and the information panels are very educational;
+ quality of the restaurants.
- practically impossible to cover the entire park in just one day, a second day is recommended;
- not recommended in case of bad weather.
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