Sweetbriar Dreams

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Sunday, 26 October 2014

A Trip to London Zoo

It has been many, many years since I was last at London Zoo in Regents Park.  I can remember Guy the Gorilla still being alive and enjoying watching and learning about the exotic animals, especially the larger predators as well as the large snakes.  If only the memories could still be real years later.  Is it because we grow taller and wiser that we sometimes feel a bit disappointed when the venues are not so impressive?  However, the promised rain kept away and Miss Teen and Miss B came along for another trip down South so that I could show them one of my regular haunts as a child.  So, let's see some of the animals that came to say hello - just be careful not to upset the tiger!
We had been trying to get a clear view of this beauty for hours and kept going back to the Tiger enclosure but due to wired fences, overgrown trees and shrubs, other enclosures in the way, it was so, so hard to see them even with the naked eye.  Just before we left, we finally got a chance to see this magnificent creature.  There was good visual entertainment to be had with the penguins though.  However I could have looked at this little fella all day!
Even though I thought at any moment his sleepy slumber would knock him off his feet...
Our other favourites had to be the meerkats.  Unfortunately once again due to the reflective glass I had to lift the camera up to get any kind of photo, but it certainly got this one's attention - he is even smiling...
... and this one...
Near the entrance of the zoo is this 1920's building, the Reptile House...
I used to love going through the doors here, to be face to face with the large snakes.
Even the famous scene in Harry Potter and the Philosophers Stone was filmed here.  Things have changed as you will see from the notice next to the exhibit since the film, and the snakes were a whole lot smaller!
I tried to get a shot of the items inside but with the highly reflective glass it was impossible.  So outside we went and along to see the Gorillas.  After looking at the Silverback inside (again highly reflective glass so I couldn't get a decent photo), I went outside to see what else was going on and was happily followed by the magnificent creature before he disappeared into the long grass.
This cheeky fella on the other side of the Gorilla's enclosure was not happy with the leaves inside his area so kept foraging for any leaf that had some greenery on it.
And now some colour, the beautiful pink flamingos...
... and this interesting looking Eastern White Pelican.
Not the best looking of the birds, but I loved the different textures of his face.
Then onto another enclosure, this time to walk with spider monkeys.  Well, I say walk, but in fact they were above our heads and looking from the bushes to see if they could take something from us!
They were moving so quickly, but this little one stopped for a second.
Now time to see the kangaroos in the Outback section.
The Africa Section was next but there was only the giraffes to be seen.  This one was very happy to pose though, poking out his blue tongue for the camera ...
Over to the aviary now which was full of Sacred Ibis.
They were feeding on dead rats... no didn't take photos of those!
To go over to the aviary means that you cross the Canal, which was a welcome break to watch the river activity.
And yes, there has to be a canal boat!
It's a busy canal...
So, time to say goodbye to London Zoo, a little disappointed I have to say.  We will return one day to a zoo, but it will probably be Colchester's Zoo which is more open and has far more space and opportunities to see the animals.  They don't seem as bored there.

Our day finished with a walk in Camden Town.  The evening was drawing in but to see the lights gradually coming on in London town was just great!
We will re-visit this place along with the markets, lock and fantastic shop very soon!
But now I am waiting for my laptop to be returned (the blue screen of doom came to visit it!!), and next week both Miss Teen and me will re-visit the Tower of London's Installation to hear one of our ancestor's names being read at the Roll of Honour at sunset (my last visit is here).  Yes, camera will be with me... and tissues for when his name is read nearly one hundred years after his death.

Until then, have a wonderful week!!

Take care.

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This week I am sharing with:


  1. Nice pics! Who doesn't love a trip to the zoo? I especially like your photo of the sleeping penguin. :)

  2. I really enjoyed this blog what adorable animals loved them all ♥ and what a beautiful zoo so much better then the one we have in Aldergrove BC. called The Vancouver Game Farm now that is really boring and the animals really do look sad there. God knows why that place is still open let alone allowed to inhibit animals period.

    Very beautiful place you were visiting Chel, I just enjoy your phlogs my friend! ♥

  3. Super photos, I especially love the meerkats! Camden Lock looks a very interesting place to visit.


  4. Despite all the obstacles, you got some great photos of some of the animals, Chel. It would have been sorely disappointing to see the zoo as it is today I guess. Our perspective on wild animals has changed with time. Wonderful that you will be in London Tower for the reading of the roll of honour. What an honour to be there for that! Blessings. Pam

  5. Some beautiful images and a meerkat that smiles for the camera. For some reason I feel sad about seeing gorillas confined. I think it;s the expression in their eyes.

    I do have mixed feelings about zoos but the one near to us has huge open spaces for the animals many of which have been 'rescied' from other parts of the world where their living conditions weren't perfect . Some are part of breeding conservatuon programmes and others have retired from such programmes in other zoos, They have just created a polar bear area that consists of a ten acre park incorporating a lake 8 metres deep. They've also constructed caves as dens.The first bear has arrived - a retiree from a breeding programme and they are hoping to bring a second from Spain as it is suffering in the heat there.

  6. It has been a long time that I visited a zoo, but the pictures of the animals are great. Especially the giraffe and the sleepy penguin are cute.

  7. Those are stunning photos. I feel like they should have the post read by David Attenborough! Cant wait for our next trip.

  8. OH! I have been to London Zoo only once in my life, it was in 1985!!
    And you know, when I watched that scene from the Harry Potter movie, I recognized that it was the Reptile House from London Zoo! (Did you know that it was the very first zoo anywhere? Sorry, you might have said that in your post, I am such an airhead these days!)
    Love your photos here, that meerkat looks like its smiling to me too!!
    Wish I was in London right now, we only got to spend two nights there last month, wish it could have been longer. xx

  9. It's so difficult to take pictures of animals that are constantly moving around. Great job, you really caught their attention too.

  10. I too, remember seeing Guy the Gorilla MANY years ago, when we went on a school trip to London Zoo!! I haven't been back either! We prefer Marwell Zoo, near Winchester, if any! I have never been to Camden Lock, mmm! on my list!!! I just love the picture of the oh! so tired Penguin!!! Maybe he was out of kilter due to the clocks changing!!!! Will look forward to hearing about your return trip to the Tower of London, an emotional moment no doubt. X

  11. Despite the reflective glass and high grasses, you got some excellent shots! Love the tiger :) We live near Metro Toronto Zoo, and used to enjoy seeing the big animals like the rhino. Imagine our surprise when my son and I visited the Toronto Museum and saw that the biggest and oldest rhino from the zoo had died and been purchased by the museum and he is now on display there! I didn't know that the Reptile House from HP was at the London zoo. I love those old buildings. The shots of the town coming to life at night are very intriguing and I'd love to go wandering through the streets. Wendy

  12. You took such amazing photos. It looks like the animals cooperated and posed for you. The close ups are incredible. It's been a long time since I went to a big zoo....it's such a good experience. Wishing you the very best week my friend! Hugs, Diane

  13. Such amazing photos of the animals. The tiger has the sweetest face. The sleepy penguin has to be my favorite though...cute little guy. I hope you have a wonderful week full of blessings!

    Hugs, Vicky

  14. Another wonderful post Chel.Thank you so much. Now I'm looking forward to Camden Town.


  15. A wonderful vicarious trip to the zoo. Love that giraffe. Such an odd and interesting animal. Wishing you a wonderful week ahead.


  16. Last time I've been at the London Zoo ?????? I don't remember ….. but I remember both orang-utan and gorilla mums were showing their babies to us ….. they were so proud …..
    thank you for this visit !!!!!
    xxxxxx Ale

  17. Thanks for sharing your photos - I've never been to London zoo.

  18. We use to do a zoo every year when our daughter was younger. There are still a couple I would like to revisit from my youth, but like you I am afraid I might be disappointed.

  19. What a beautiful zoo. I never tire of looking at animals of all kinds. Love the photos of the meerkat and penguin.

  20. Wow it looks like you all had a lot of fun at the zoo and such wonderful photos! I love all the animals you took pictures of. It has been a while since I've been to the zoo! I will have visit again maybe during the summer! Thanks for taking us along with you. Have a nice week Chel.

  21. Oh, that tiger's gaze sends chills - I would not like to meet up with one in the wild. You would die just from that stare! Magnificent creatures and lovely photos you have shared of all the animals. I love the meerkats. xo Karen

  22. Great photo-tour, Chel! I do feel that London Zoo seems a little small, somehow - though I know they do great work protecting endangered species. Whipsnade's good.

  23. Stunning images, looks like a great day out.

  24. Gorgeous animals so beautifully photographed. A day at the zoo is always nice.

  25. Thanks for a fun tour through the Zoo. I loved seeing the different animals. So glad you got to see that Gorilla, he's quite handsome.

  26. I totally enjoyed this visit to the zoo with you, Chel! For all of the challenges you faced with photographing the animals, you sure got some amazing shots! Camden Lock seems like a fun place!

  27. Hello my friend! Your pictures are incredible! My son and I have been wanting to go to the zoo and you have just given us a trip to the zoo from our home :) The giraffe is adorable!

    Thank you for sharing, dear Chel! You are so talented. Hugs to you!

  28. Ahhh I remember Guy the Gorilla too... my Dad used to be a member of the zoo and took me all the time as a child. My picture on my 365 Project today is from the Zoo too, was taken at one of their summer late events


  29. Wow, you have some great animal shots for your collection. Love the image of the canal with the bridge.


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