Fota Wildlife Park

Baby zebra at Fota Wildlife Park, Cork, Ireland.Fota Wildlife Park is set on 70 acres in the heart of Cork Harbour and is just a few minutes drive from Cork city. I drove there from Killarney and didn’t have to face the city traffic at all. I was staying in the nearby Fota Island Hotel and Spa which is a post for another occasion perhaps.

The Wildlife Park has been open for quite some time but this was my first visit. It is very easy to walk around and you can get surprisingly close to the animals. I think children would really enjoy a day out here. There is a ‘train’ ride which I sampled but it was rather fast and bumpy and there was absolutely no interaction between the driver and the passengers. Perhaps they were just having a bad day but it certainly wasn’t worth the round trip. There no indication of what we were passing to our right or to our left, no pausing to give an opportunity to take photos although on the plus side, the train did stop briefly close to an onsite cafe so you could get off there, perhaps have a coffee or lunch, a bit of a stroll, and then hop on the train back to the entrance. All in all, though, I would think it is better to take you time and walk around. You’ll see more – and it is not so big that even the fairly unfit such as myself couldn’t comfortable complete the circuit.

As well as the zebra pictured here, there are giraffe, monkeys of various kinds, llamas, bison, a fabulous snowy white owl, and lots more.

For information on the opening times and prices, visit