I became aware of the Monkey Forest in Trentham Gardens about a year ago and I have wanted to visit it since.
It took us a while to get around to it but just over a week ago I made a last minute decision to go.
Ophelia, Francesca and I packed a picnic and set off at about 10am in the morning. The drive was roughly 1 hour 15 minutes from our house in Manchester to Staffordshire. We could have knocked off 10 minutes but the sat nav brought us in the wrong direction. Having said that, there are plenty of sign posts closer to the attraction and it is not an overly complicated route.
On arrival the car park was quite full but we managed to find a space very close to the entrance.
There is no option to book before arrival and pay online for families and individuals so you pay at the gate which is located about 200 yards from the car park.
The price is reasonable:
Adults: £8.00 each
Senior citizens/students £7.50 each
Children (from 3 to 14 years old): £6.00 each
Disabled/carers £5.00 each
Under 3 years old Free of charge
If you combine a trop to Monkey Forest with a trip to Trentham Gardens which is a one mile away in the car you can then purchase a joint ticket which saves you money. I was unable to visit Trentham Gardens that day as Francesca wasn’t in the best of moods but we will definitely be adding it to the list of ‘Family days out’.
They have a café on site which we didn’t visit so I’m unable to comment on the food offered as I decided to bring a picnic instead. I always prefer to take a picnic as I usually find that at attractions like this the food on offer is usually fast food. With the picnic I pack I know I am packing healthy alternatives.
As you walk through the entrance you will see the café, play area and picnic area straight in front of you with the toilets located at the side of the café. It’s quite a straight forward layout.
The entrance to the Monkey Forest is enclosed and as you approach you are greeted by one of several guides who gives you a quick introduction and some rules. They also have an area for you to leave any bags you don’t wish to bring into the enclosure and they also require you to leave any plastic bags you may have with you or water bottles as they can attract the monkeys to you.
It is a one way system around the Monkey Forest and there is another guide at the beginning to give you any information you require.
The scenery is beautiful and we were greeted by Monkeys no more than a minute down the path.
It’s obvious that they Monkey’s are very used to having company as they are so unfazed by visitors.
Our timing was right too as they were giving a talk about the Monkey’s and their history which was quite interesting. They included a bit of interaction with the audience also by asking questions and we also watched them being fed. This was a nice sight as most of the Monkey’s seemed to come out of hiding for food time.
As we made out way around the trail we were lucky enough to see some beautiful sights and images of the natural forest and hillsides.
Both of my girls, who are 18 months and 6 years old really enjoyed it. It’s important to me that I can find activities that will suit both of them, and as you can appreciate, it’s always possible. This trip however ticked the box.
As you come to the end of the trail there is quite a steep hill leading you down the path. I had the pushchair for support but had to go steady. It’s not an impossible fete though, just one to be careful on.
We were afforded some lovely sunshine on our visit which only enhanced our trip but even if the sun wasn’t out it is definitely a trip worth taking if you enjoy wildlife in a nice setting.
After we had completed the trail, which took us about 30 minutes to get around we ate our picnic. There was enough space for us to lay down a large blanket and have plenty of space around us.
The girls then played on the play area for around 30 minutes. It’s not a big play area but it kept the children amused.
I would definitely take a trip back here with Mr.S in tow and also combine the visit with the Trentham Gardens. It was a worthwhile visit at a reasonable price.