Have you ever been to Peel Zoo? My friends, I’m ashamed to say that I’d never even HEARD of Peel Zoo, let alone been there. And yes, living 1.5 hours away from Pinjarra has a lot to do with that, but seriously, guys, this place is worth travelling to. And I can assure you, with three children and a weak bladder, that’s not something I say flippantly.
When we left the northern suburbs, at 9.30 on a Saturday morning, it was GLORIOUSLY sunny, and so we donned summer attire, for we are idiots who consistently fail to check the weather forecast. Because of course, by 11am in Pinjarra, it was pouring down. When we saw the sign for Peel Zoo – through the rain – and cheered, Ben shook his head and said forlornly: “Well this day’s taken a turn for the worse.” And, as we sat in the carpark, huddled together for warmth, waiting for a break in the rain to make a dash to the entrance, I thought he might have been right.
It says A LOT about Peel Zoo, then, that our day turned out brilliantly. It really did! I met one of my oldest, dearest friends there, which was ace, as she lives not far away. FYI, Peel Zoo is a great place to meet old friends who happen to live south of the river, when you live north.
And: we pretty much had it to ourselves. Strangely enough, zoos aren’t that popular on pouring-with-rain days. Go figure. The lovely lady on the front counter gave us a huge bag of food (for the animals, not for us, although this took some explaining to Alice), and we soggily set off to see the animals.
First stop: the snake, which Ben wore merrily around his shoulders. The rest of us politely declined, despite the snake being kinda cute, in a reptilian sort of way.
As a privately run zoo, Peel is a warm, fuzzy place to visit. You do kind of feel as though you’re wandering around someone’s private petting zoo, with up-close-and-personal access to weird and wonderful creatures. We spent ages with each animal, which made a nice change from just peering and pointing, as you do at most zoos. And the animals are brill! Foxes and ferrets and deer and alpacas and roos and koalas and wombats and dingoes and Tasmanian devils and Bengal cats. My dear friend got pooed on in the walk-through aviary, but that’s lucky, right?
Frankie took a shine to Jack the kangaroo, who’s kept in an enclosure because of his propensity to cuddle ladies. Literally. But he was happy to pop his snout (snout?) through the fence and kiss Frankie.
There’s no café here, but there are barbecues and picnic tables (undercover! Yay!) and a lovely, welcoming vibe. Mrs Mac’s pies and sausage rolls are available, plus drinks and Mini Melts ice cream, and the coffee machine does a pretty good double-shot flat white for $3.50.
Peel Zoo got 20 out of 10 from my children (even BEN), and we’ve decided it’s a must-stop destination the next time we’re heading down south. Good idea, right?
Peel Zoo is the KidzaBuzz book! Check out V127 for one free child’s entry, and V128 for a special offer on a family pass.
Peel Zoo is at Sanctuary Park Drive, Pinjarra. Phone 9531 4322 or visit the website.