Located in Winkhill, Staffordshire, Peak Wildlife Park is home to a diverse range of animals that visitors can get up close and personal with. With a focus on exotic birds, the safari also features meerkats, wallabies, zebras, and penguins. The park’s zookeepers offer a one-on-one experience and demonstrate how each animal is taken care of, and even allow visitors the opportunity to do some of the work: help feed penguins, pet the meerkats, and provide human company for ring-tailed lemurs inside their enclosure!
Onsite, you’ll also find a café and restaurant serving up mouth-watering Neapolitan pizza, a play area & bouncy castle, an indoor play area, a gift shop, and a sizeable picnic area.
History of the Peak Wildlife Park
Peak Wildlife Park was first established in 1991 under the name Blackbrook Zoological Park by original owner, Diana Holloway. Having owned and maintained the Hillside Bird Oasis in Cheshire since 1974, Holloway turned her new venture into an even bigger sanctuary for exotic birds, which boasted a diverse range of 200 different species at its peak.
Holloway died in 2006, and Blackbrook Zoo was inherited by her son, Mark Rubery. Rubery expanded the zoos facilities: the gift shop, café, and main entrance were added in 2006, and the penguin exhibit was constructed in 2008, which cost £500,000!
Blackbrook closed after falling into administration in 2014 but was quickly taken over by Jake Veasey and Colin MacDougall and reopened as the Peak Wildlife Park in 2015.
Things to see and do at Peak Wildlife Park
Lemur Heights – Experience Madagascar from the comfort of the Peak District at Peak Wildlife’s Lemur Heights walkthrough. This experience allows you to enter their world, walk through their enclosure, and get face-to-face with the Madagascar natives. Several different species of lemur live throughout the enclosure, notably: the Black and White Ruffled Lemurs, who love climbing up high to eat fruit, and who are native to the eastern side of Madagascar; and the iconic Ring Tailed Lemurs, of which the enclosure only has a small population of, so you’ll need to keep your eyes peeled for them.
Penguin Paths – This walkthrough focusses of animals native to South America, with the main attraction being the Humboldt Penguins, who regularly march through the enclosure, where you can get up close and feed them. There is even an underwater viewing area, where visitors can spectate the penguins swimming in action. In this enclosure you’ll also find Patagonian Maras – the 4th largest rodent in the world!
Wallaby Wonderland – In the Staffordshire moorlands during the middle of the 20th century there was a surprisingly large population of wild wallaby’s. the story goes that a wallaby breeder, Henry Brocklehurst, had to let go of his beloved pets due to wartime restrictions in 1945; the population was seen to grow healthily into the following decades. Numbers deteriorated as the years went by, however, many people, even up to recently, have claimed to see survivors still roaming around this area of the Peak District. As a nod to Brocklehurst’s wallaby’s, Peak Wildlife have created a large enclosure for wallaby’s, which is open for visitors to get to know the former Staffordshire residents!
African Village – This segment of Peak Zoo offers more of a traditional zoo experience, with the animals kept behind glass, but still makes for a fun and exciting experience, with an interesting array of African-native animals populating the area. Designed to look like African plains, this enclosure features Pygmy Goats, Slender Tailed Meerkats, and a range of chicken breeds.
Peak Wildlife Café – The café at Peak Wildlife has a fantastic selection of Neapolitan stone-baked pizzas, a range of sandwiches, and of course teas and coffees.
How to get there
By car – the park is located on Ellastone Road and can be reached via the A523 road, which connects Leek and Ashbourne.
Postcode for Satnav – ST13 7QR
Car Park – There is a free car park onsite.
Good to Know
– Dogs are not allowed onsite, and the park offers no onsite dog facilities. Peak Wildlife recommend Foxtwood Kennels, who can mind your dog for the day, and are located only 10 minutes away from the park.
– There are many picnic areas onsite.
Moday – Sunday – 9.00am – 5.00pm
Adult – £12.95
Child (2–16-year olds) – £10.95
Under 2s – Free
Concessions (Over 65-year olds and students, with a valid ID) – £10.95
Carers – Free