A Day at Givskud Zoo, Denmark

Yes, this is a very old post that I wrote back in August and forgot to edit and publish. Yes, I know that it is bizarre to publish a post so old and about an event that clearly takes place in summer, BUT for all of you who are contemplating what to do in or near Legoland this summer, this post might give you some ideas? And for all of you who wonder if Givskud is just an old, worn down zoo that promises more than it can keep, I can only say that I have been as honest as any person can be. This was a really funny place to go to with the family. We all enjoyed it. The grown ups, the teenagers of 16-19 and the children ranging from 5-12. It’s one of those activities that suits all age groups in other words, those that are so difficult to find.

Monday 5 August 2013:

Today we headed off to Denmark, at 6:30, to avoid both rush hour traffic towards Malmö and in Copenhagen. We caught some of it still, in Copenhagen, but it was not too bad and the real problem was not so much the traffic but all the road work. We managed to arrive to Givskud Zoo, only 20 minutes after they opened which was fantastic, since it meant that we would be able to get to the hotel in time, before the checking in time was out at 18:00.

We had GIVSKUD_ZOO_Park_map_2013_web_348pxoriginally planned to go to Knutenborg’s Safari park this summer, but since we decided to go to Legoland, we could not justify the petrol going on two different trips to Denmark, in two directions. Givskud Zoo is close by Legoland, so we can do both in one trip. And now when we have been here, I must say that this was a much more fun place! “Gubby” would agree whole heartedly even though he has never been to Knutenborg! I’ll explain why and see if I can find a picture…

One enters at bottom right on the map above. And then park at P1. Here one leaves the car and walks around looking at elephants, camels and so on. We were lucky to be there when they feed the camels. So much fun! All children were given carrots and then were allowed to feed the camels. My children were so excited and laughed and were given more and more carrots to give the camels. At first “Gubby” was scared but then he got more and more confident and finally were petting all the camels. We missed the elephant feeding so I am not sure, how that is done. If the audience is the one that feeds them as well? When you feel done with this part, you sit down in your car and drive in to the safari part. “Dollie” became most excited about the zebras so now we have tons of zebra photos! And all the children informed “Gubby”: – Look, “Marty”!!! (“Madagascar”) I of course took oodles of photos and films of the giraffes, my favourite animal! And the children said to “Gubby”: – Look, “Melman”!  From the safari drive, it is on to P2 where one once again parks the car, and walks around to look at other animals among them the Lemurs. The latter were soooo  cute and the children said to “Gubby”: – Look, “King Julian!”. The gorillas were pretty boring till one female suddenly walked towards us and we saw that she was holding her baby in her hand. Then we stood there trying to get a cute photo of the baby.

From this parking lot, we moved to what the park thinks is the highlight: The Lions. 1 male and his 12 wives! Outside it tells you to roll up all your windows, honk your horn if you are in trouble, lock the doors and so on. As soon as we got through the two security gates we were on the tale of two other cars. The first one had stopped by the lions that were laying under a tree resting. And one of the grounds crew drove up to that car and held up a sign from inside their car, “Roll up your windows!”. Are people insane? The first car was having their windows down! A sudden death wish or what? The lions are only fed Saturdays and Wednesdays so I am sure they were up for a snack! Of course the children said to “Gubby”: Look …, there’s “Alex”!

From the Lions enclosure, one drives to P3 and I went in to the Safari shop while the children ran off to a play ground that they spotted opposite. It took forever to get them away from it, to finish looking at the last animals. Especially, after they had found the petting zoo. All of the children were in there petting goats and having a blast. “Gubby” had thrown off his sandals and were running around among all the goat droppings. What does one do??? One boy left and did not close the gate so lots of goats escaped. “Kitty” and “Gubby” thought this hilarious and helped this old lady try to chase the goats back, and more managed to escape before all were finally back in to the fold. I wish I had been carrying the camera then, but T. was, and he never see the photo opportunities!

“Gubby” was suddenly cranky, tired, and overheated, so we put him in this trolley that one could borrow. We walked to see all the flamingoes. What a funny bird. I was fascinated with their pink feet and pink knees on white legs! We stood there for a while because they were hilarious! One sang a horrible song and all of them moved their heads in unison like some sort of dance. Amazing. I’ve never seen flamingoes before so this was all new to me. I quickly walked by the chimpanzees since they were no fun. But then the children came running saying that I had missed how one of them had urinated from a tree. Oh no, I missed THAT? I couldn’t tell them that I was glad that I was spared. Then we walked off to see these adorable goats with long hanging floppy ears. Never seen anything like them either. And then “Boo” notices that we had missed the hippopotamuses at P2. So we had to walk all the way up there on back roads. I suddenly got very sore heels, and on the way, after we had seen the baby hippos, and the children had said to “Gubby”: – Look, “Gloria”!, we found a second trolley and Daniel pulled me, sitting in that like a queen. Boy was it nice to be spared that long walk back.

We went to the playground again, deeper in this time. Since I had noticed some funny looking drawings on the map’s bottom part. Sure enough. It had a little trail where one drove this little peddle car. “Kitty” got the hang of it right away and had a blast but “Gubby” couldn’t get coordinated enough. Soon we were all over in the trampoline park instead. T. got on the biggest that was a kind I have never seen before, since it was like a half-moon, like a hill that one was jumping on. I don’t know what I laughed at the most, “Gubby’s” excited, happy face jumping up and down, or my husband’s? The girls even got me up on that largest one, but this pervert just sat and watched me the entire time, since my skirt was flying up, so I finally didn’t want to delight him anymore…

playgroundplayground2All in all, there is something like four playgrounds there at the exit of the playground3zoo plus the one inside the petting zoo. I would say that “Gubby” would gladly have spent the seven hours we were at the zoo, at the playgrounds and feeding the camels. He did not want to leave and cried. I must say, that I have never seen such fun playgrounds before. Some of the things really presented a challenge to children and I wish council playgrounds would be like these. Why can’t they? Why do the playgrounds have to be so boring that children at home just go there to pick a fight with who ever else comes along, because it for sure is not fun for them to play at the playgrounds!

langelundWe headed for our rented flat outside Langelund. Apartment 2 is ours for two nights, and is the three windows on the right side. Not at the end, but closest to the big building that looks like a big barn, but contains not two garages but a storage room for toys and mini golf clubs etc. langelund2It’s really nice out here. A big farm, with a gigantic play ground, mini golf course, trampoline dug in the ground so children will not get hurt, stone floors in the flat, fully functioning kitchen. Only backside is that we have to clean it ourselves upon leaving and we had to bring own sheets and towels. But beggars can’t be choosers. The owner told us where we could go shop for food, but when we got to the round about close by, it was closed off. A major accident had happened. Fire engines were there, a big crane, one semi was laying on its side… How on earth it could have fallen over like that is beyond me, but we could not go shopping for dinner. Saturday, I had grabbed three cans of ravioli, for emergency feeding, in case we could not find somewhere to shop for food. I did not think we would have to use them, but now I was glad that I had grabbed them!

The children are happy. They’ve played for hours outdoors and will sleep well tonight I am sure. “Gubby” is running around with a fly swatter, chasing flies and believe it or not, is actually catching them! Poor thing, doesn’t know what we are doing in this strange house though. He came to me and said: “Mamma, let’s go home now!” I told him “No, we are going to sleep here!”. He looked at me troubled and said “No, it is creepy here!”. His newest favourite word. Everything is terrible and creepy now.

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2 responses to “A Day at Givskud Zoo, Denmark

  1. Am I allowed to publish this on my twitter?