|The Arc (from the website)|
It has something for everyone. Botanical gardens, a château, a labyrinth, African safari, kid's playground, petting zoo and of course tons of different animals in a huge, natural outdoor setting that you walk through. They also offer "shows", which are more like college lectures (but hey this is France).
The diversity of the animals is just breathtaking. For a bit of a glimpse, click here.
|Thoiry Chateau and giggles|
The grounds: the trees, flowers, ponds, gardens - just gorgeous. I cannot wait to visit next spring when everything is in bloom.
Thoiry does something that I thought was incredibly unique, though maybe it isn't, but I had never seen this done before. For a few of the animals, they put the people in the cage (so to speak) and the lions were free to roam. There was a long (very thick) glass covered corridor which people walk through. The lions were laying on top of them when we were there. Their heads are enormous! (no pics this time, sorry).
The drive-through Safari is also cool. Animals strutting down the main road next to the car, very cool. I may have seen buffalo before, but have no recollection of their enormity. They really are beasts.
Here are just a few pics I took with my phone today of the Safari part. I was alone with Sabine and Leo, therefore couldn't really get into picture taking during the animal park part. That is one thing about being with small children, they really demand ALL of your attention (and some!). But in the car, they were strapped in their car seats...
|bonus pic of my sweet Sabine <3|