Dublin Zoo

So today we visited the Dublin Zoo.  The kids have already been twice and I knew they were somewhat bored that last time we went in March 2015, but as I had three free tickets using Tesco points, we paid 12.20 for one child to get in and had a nice family day out for cheap!!   The first time we visited the zoo, we were just tourists living in the UK checking out Dublin to see what it was like while Nils had a conference here and we moved 8 months later.  It was FREEZING cold.

They opened a new sea lion area with a cafe and a flamingo area so we thought why not, let’s have a look. But had our fill for the next two years – or until they do something major.   I’d rather travel up to Belfast to check out the Belfast Zoo or even to Cork for Fota Wildlife Park – as it’s been well over 10 years since we’ve been there.

The sea lion show, while short, was good – Flo was great!

For some reason, nearly all the animals were sleeping today so I only took photos of those who were actually awake.

The elephants were so cute – now there is a male in the mix, they have three babies and a pregnant female [which we learned their gestation period is 22 months!]  I never new elephants like swimming – they babies were in there under water, etc.

HOW CUTE are these babies in the water?!  I never new they could swim – apparently they can and are very good at it.

Snow Leopard was awake and walking around for a few minutes but then went to the cave and started to nap.

The giraffe in the middle kept being followed by the oryx until finally he just accepted he was never going to leave his side.  A lady next to me told her child it was a GOAT!  LOL

A stop off at the playground area – which was packed!

A fun day out but I think we are content on not returning for a few more years (unless free, of course). There is just not enough to do or see to justify the cost of admission – not including anything else is  63.00 for the day.  I think €18.00 per adult and €13.50 per child or an annual pass is 185 for a family is a bit steep for the value.   Sorry Dublin Zoo!

Dublin Zoo

Last year when we were in Dublin for a long weekend, the kids & I visited the Dublin Zoo.   As you’ll see from the photos on that post, we were nearly the ONLY people in the zoo that day … it was FREEZING cold.

As we had Tesco vouchers for two free adult admission tickets and the weather yesterday was lovely, we took advantage and headed there.   Clearly half the families in Dublin and all the scout groups were there too… and when they arrived in the playgroun, we cleared out asap.

Unlike the one-on-one personal touch you get when visiting the otters, spider monkies, caymans and jaguars at the Cromer Zoo, here the zookeeper chucks a few handfuls of veg to the Orangutans – a small talk (no microphone = impossible to hear) and off we went to see other animals.



The elephants also had a feed with narration, but the speaker system was pretty bad and couldn’t hear… plus kids had to pee, so wanted to move along after not long.  They were my favorite animals.






A few photos of the animals we passed…








and our animals…




and how funny is it that their favorite potato chips have a promotion with IBIZA!

Overall the day was a nice family day, but one thing is for certain, is that we’d NEVER spent 170 euro on a family membership.   Instead, we’d go with a membership to Tayto Park – and even that is a stretch as I’m not sure we’d go there as often as I’d like.  Unless you live very close to these places. the chances you’ll go often are slim.

Would we go back – NO!  Having been twice now with the kids, they are bored of it.   Unless we are given free tickets, I cannot see us paying to return.


Dublin, Ireland: Exploration & Fact Finding Trip – Day Two

Day two begins with he kids and I starting our day off at Starbucks just next to our hotel in the HCQ building.   I had what is called a “Venti Misto”.  A the whopping price of €3.70, you think it was gold or something fancy like a Grande Skinny Mocalatte Frappachino, but no, it’s just a large sized black coffee mixed with warm milk.  Robbery at that price.  The kids both had an Innocent Smoothie and Blueberry muffin each.  Anyway, we won’t be going there much. It was SOOOO expensive – I think it was something like €15.00.   I was thinking it should be like €7.00 tops.    Clearly the kids need something to eat, so we’re going to try the bagel place around the corner tomorrow.

After we finished, we made our plan for the day.  We decided as it was dry, we’d head to the Dublin Zoo.   We started out with the plans to take the LUAS up to Heuston Station and then walk.  But when we were waiting for the tram to come, there was an announcement that there was an accident involving a tram at Museum station, so no trams were running after Abby Street.  Grrr annoyed a bit, we scrapped the LUAS idea and took a taxi, despite already having bought tickets.   The driver, from Raheny, was a nice guy and gave me lots of insider information about the areas and which places are nicer for families and others not so nice.

When we go to the zoo, it was cold – much colder than we thought.  I thought they had created an indoor play space too, but turns out there is a covered play space so if it rains they will be out of the rain, but still freezing!   The kids had fun, climbing and getting a snack in the machine seen behind (and then at every machine throughout the park asked for something).

After we left this play area, we found two others in the park, where they had some fun.


Both kids were cold and at times pushed my buttons, but all in all it was more fun than horrible.  Maebh took about an hour long, much-needed nap in the rented buggy.  Soren and I walked around looking at all the animals.

Towards the end, we came to the elephants.  When Nils I were here over 7 years ago, there was a baby and it was so cute.  Today we were the only two there (clearly everyone knows not to go to the zoo in the freezing cold) and two elephants gave us a private show.  They were so sweet and cute!

He was not feeling well and sat down and folded his arms.  When I asked what was wrong, he started crying saying he was sick.  And when I asked what would make it better – his reply was priceless – “THE GIFT SHOP”!

During the entire 4 hours at the zoo, Soren kept asking for the gift shop.  To the point where he was reading the map and the signs, only with the exit gift shop on his mind.  At one point, I had to threaten that if he mentioned the gift shop one more time, we’d skip it completely.  Soren did come up with a song – “Heron’s flying, Seals are barking & a Peacock is sleeping on a bench.”

They had several giraffes outside in the open area, but three were kept apart indoors.  That is when
Soren spotted a red needle sticking out of the giraffe’s side and said it was like the lion in Madascar, who saw swirls in his eyes.

When we left, we decided to walk down to the Heuston station and take the LUAS back to George’s Dock.  It was a long walk and I felt bad as his feet where tired from walking, though I didn’t particularly enjoy walking in the cold pushing Maebh in the stroller either.   So after a long, cold day at the zoo with loads of walking, we retired to the hotel room ate our Mexican takeaway on the bed watching Cbeebies.

Oh and almost forget – the squirrel trying to get the bottle.

Read all about Day One.