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family friendly activities devon

Family Activities at Dartmoor Zoo: Unforgettable Experiences for All Ages

Dartmoor Zoo: A Dedication to Family Experiences

At the core of Dartmoor Zoo’s ethos lies a profound dedication to delivering enriching and engaging family experiences. Situated amidst the breathtaking landscapes of Devon, the zoo presents a unique fusion of education, conservation, and entertainment, establishing it as a must-visit destination for families.

Recognising the significance of interactive learning, Dartmoor Zoo has curated an array of family-oriented activities and experiences. From intimate encounters with intriguing wildlife to education about conservation endeavours, the zoo ensures that every visit is entertaining and educational.

The zoo’s commitment to crafting memorable family experiences extends beyond animal exhibits. With its picturesque setting, comfortable facilities, and various events throughout the year, Dartmoor Zoo guarantees a comprehensive and enjoyable day out for the entire family.

Whether it’s the thrill of observing a tiger at close quarters, the delight of feeding the otters, or the excitement of partaking in a zookeeper experience, Dartmoor Zoo is dedicated to making each visit a cherished family memory. Come and discover the magic of wildlife and the beauty of nature in a family-friendly environment at Dartmoor Zoo.

Key Features for Families at Dartmoor Zoo

Affordable Family Fun: Children aged 2 years and under enter for free. We also offer a discounted Family Pass (for 2 adults & 2 children or 1 adult & 3 children).

Stroller-Friendly: Our site is fully accessible for strollers, ensuring a comfortable visit for the youngest members of your family.

Play Areas: We have a calm garden with a play area, a climbing/jungle frame near the jaguar exhibit, and a playground on the lawn area. There’s also a wooden build-your-own-den section near the lynx exhibit.

Indoor Soft Play: Located in our restaurant, this area provides a fun, safe space for children to play.

Family Facilities: We provide baby changing facilities in our bathrooms and high chairs in our restaurant upon request.

Children’s Menu: We offer a great selection of food on our dedicated children’s menu. Lunchboxes are also available for families wanting to eat on the go.

Inclusive Experiences: Many of our experiences are inclusive of children (age limits apply). We offer special experiences like Junior Keeper for the Day and Rangers Academy, designed specifically for our younger visitors.

Holiday Fun: Our half-term and summer holiday activities focus on family-friendly fun, with educational and adventurous trails around the zoo.

Convenient Location: We’re just a 15-minute drive from Plymouth, helping to keep those “are we there yet?” questions to a minimum.

Interactive Walk-Through: Families can enjoy interactive experiences with Mr Pickles the fallow deer and our goats in the pen.

Roar n Snore Events: For a truly unique experience, families can camp overnight at the zoo (age 4+).

Partner Discounts:

We offer discounts with other tourist attractions, such as 50% off with the National Marine Aquarium and 20% off with Shaldon Zoo, helping families entertain their little ones without breaking the bank. We also offer:

  • 25% Discounted entry to Drakes Den (if you’ve been to DZS)
  • 10% Discounted entry to Dartmoor Zoo (if you’ve been to Drakes Den)

Also, on any future party bookings, you will receive either:

  • Free birthday child entry to Dartmoor Zoo for each birthday party booked at Drakes Den
  • Free family pass to Drakes Den for each birthday party booked at Dartmoor Zoo.

Featured Family Activities at Dartmoor Zoo: 

Please note that some of these experiences are 18+, so please read the descriptions carefully.

Feed the Tapirs

During this experience you will get to feed our tapir family, Chana and Rofilho. You will be with a keeper…

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Meet the Tiger (for two people)

During this unique experience, you’ll meet one of our keepers and get up-close and personal with  Dragan our male tiger…

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Feed the Otters

This experience is not currently available to buy. However, we are still taking bookings for existing vouchers. During this experience…

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Big Cat Keeper (for two people)

You’ll be working with our expert big cat team caring for the widest variety of big cats in the South…

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Keeper for a Day (for two people)

You’ll be working alongside our expert zoo keeping team caring for a wide variety of species. You’ll learn about animal…

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Junior Keeper for a Day (for two children)

A day for the younger enthusiasts getting up close with a variety of species. You’ll take part in feeding selected…

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The VIP ‘We Bought a Zoo’ Tour (for two people)

In 2007, Benjamin Mee committed the story of Dartmoor Zoo to writing in the best-selling book, “We Bought a Zoo.”…

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Meet the Meerkats

This experience is not currently available to buy. However, we are still taking bookings for existing vouchers. During this unique…

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Rangers Academy (age 13 to 18)

Running from Monday to Friday, Rangers Academy is a full week packed with practical activities, lectures and animal encounters; giving…

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Rangers (age 6 to 12)

The ‘Rangers’ is a fully interactive, three day workshop that will have kids thrilled with animal encounters and activities designed…

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Big Cat Keeper Experience:

“Everything, from start to finish, was an amazing experience, optimised by the knowledge and enthusiasm of Maddie, Callum and Izzy. Being so close to the Big Cats was surreal – and the addition of visiting the wolves and the otters put an extra cherry on top of the cake. I would never have thought that, when asked about my day, I would answer that a highlight was cleaning up cheetah sick, jaguar urine and lioness poo! This is truly the day that gives life-long memories. Lunch was delicious as well. The whole day far exceeded our expectations. I honestly can’t think of any improvements. The staff were all polite and helpful and their enthusiasm shone through. It was our first visit to the Zoo and we really liked the intimacy of being in a smaller zoo, with such excellent animal viewing.”

Walk on the Wild Side:

“It was fabulous. We met Keeper Mitch, Manager Maddy and Zoo director Scott; who were all so welcoming of us and informative of the animals nature’s, characters and the zoo’s goals. It was beautiful to witness the bond that the big cats have with Scott; it’s not every day you see a fully grown tiger excitedly bound towards his best friend at the fence 😊 It’s clear the team live and breathe the zoo, and constantly strive to do the best for the welfare and happiness of all its residents. Thank you all for a very special day, and the best of luck for the zoo’s future 💖”

Big Cat Experience:

“My Daughter and I had the pleasure of doing the big cat experience on Saturday 1st July, I would like to say a big thank you to Ella for making our experience truly enjoyable, we both had an amazing time getting to meet and finding out about your wonderful animals. I would also like to say how welcome we were made to feel by all your members of staff we met from the other keepers to the people in the restaurant and behind the scenes workers, they all took their time and spoke and asked if we were enjoying our day, which made the day even more enjoyable. So once again thank you for making our day truly memorable. Yours sincerely, Rita Hill”

Practical Tips and Recommendations for Your Family Day Out at Dartmoor Zoo

Planning Your Visit

  1. Book in Advance – To ensure a smooth entry and avoid queues, consider booking your tickets online. You can also pre-book any unique experiences or encounters you wish to enjoy. Prebooking in advance saves you £1 on every ticket Book your tickets here.
  2. Check the Weather – Dartmoor Zoo is an outdoor attraction; it’s a good idea to check the weather forecast before your visit and dress accordingly.
  3. Plan Your Meals – Dartmoor Zoo has a great selection of food on the children’s dedicated menu or lunchboxes for those wanting to eat and explore on the go.

Navigating the Zoo

  1. Arrive Early – To make the most of your day, try to arrive early. This will give you plenty of time to explore all the exhibits.
  2. Use the Map – Upon arrival, you’ll receive a zoo map. Use this to plan your route and ensure you don’t miss any favourite animals or exhibits. There are also 11 large maps around the site for reference – we would like to remain green and reduce waste/paper printing where possible.
  3. Stroller Accessibility – The zoo is stroller-friendly, making navigating the site easy for families with young children.

Making the Most of Your Day

  1. Join the Animal Talks – Dartmoor Zoo offers a variety of animal talks with enrichment activities throughout the day. These are entertaining and educational, providing insights into the animals’ behaviours and conservation efforts.
  2. Participate in Interactive Experiences – From feeding the otters to meeting the tiger, several interactive experiences allow you to get up close and personal with the animals. These experiences are sure to be a hit with the whole family. Book your experience here.
  3. Explore the Play Areas – Don’t forget to take some time to relax and let the kids burn off some energy in the play areas. There’s a calm garden with a play area, a climbing/jungle frame near the jaguar, and a playground on the lawn area/wooden build-your-own den section near the lynx. There is also a soft play area in the restaurant.
  4. Visit the Gift Shop – Before you leave, stop by the gift shop to pick up a souvenir of your day. It’s a great way to remember your visit and also supports the zoo’s conservation efforts.

Remember, every visit to Dartmoor Zoo is a unique adventure. So, take your time, explore, and most importantly, have fun!

Ticket Pricing and Availability

At Dartmoor Zoo, we believe in providing a memorable, affordable experience. We offer a range of ticket options to suit different needs and budgets. Here’s what you need to know:

Individual Tickets

  • Adult (age 16+): £15.70
  • Child (age 3-15):  £12.65
  • Child (age 2 and under): Free
  • Concession (Students, Seniors 65+, Disabled): £13.60
  • Child Concession: £10.35

Family Tickets

We offer a discounted Family Pass for 2 adults and 2 children or 1 adult and 3 children. This pass is priced at £47.20, providing a saving compared to individual tickets.

Special Offers and Discounts

We believe in rewarding our loyal visitors. That’s why we offer a 20% discount for those who have visited Shaldon Zoo and a whopping 50% off for visitors to the National Marine Aquarium. There is also a 25% Discounted entry to Drakes Den.


We offer annual memberships for those who can’t get enough of Dartmoor Zoo. Enjoy unlimited visits to the zoo and a host of other exclusive benefits. Learn more about our membership options.

Booking Your Tickets

We’ve made it easy to secure your spot at Dartmoor Zoo. Click on the link below to book your tickets. Remember, pre-booking is not required for DZS Members.

Book Your Tickets Now

Please note that all prices are subject to change.


FAQs and Customer Support

We aim to ensure that your visit to Dartmoor Zoo is as enjoyable and hassle-free as possible. Here are some frequently asked questions that might help you plan your visit:

Planning Your Visit

  • Do you have baby-changing facilities? Yes, we have baby-changing facilities available for your convenience.
  • Can I return to my car during my visit? Yes, you can return to your car if necessary during your visit.

Navigating the Zoo

  • Do you have play areas? Yes, the zoo has several play areas for children to enjoy.
  • Is the site stroller accessible? Yes, the zoo is stroller-friendly, making it easy for families with young children to navigate.

Making the Most of Your Day

  • Are there any special offers or discounts? Yes, we offer discounts with other tourist attractions, such as 50% off with NMA and 20% off with Shaldon Zoo and a 25% Discounted to Drakes Den. This can help families entertain their little ones without breaking the bank.

If you have any other questions or need further assistance, please don’t hesitate to contact us. You can reach us via phone, email, or our live chat service on the website.

For more detailed information, please visit our FAQ page on the Dartmoor Zoo website.