Region: South East

Disabled Facilities: Yes

Category: Day Trip Destinations

Address: Herne Common, Herne Bay, Kent CT6 7LQ

Contact: 01227 712111



Wildwood Trust Kent is a wildlife park for British animals only, past and present, set in an ancient coppiced woodland between Canterbury and Herne Bay in East Kent. The education team uses both the animal collection (including wolves, lynx, owls, deer, wild boar, bison, red squirrels, beavers, badgers, elk and reindeer) and the woodland for teaching and also has a purpose-built log cabin-style education centre, heated by a wood burner.

We offer a range of guided tours and meet an animal sessions which enhance understanding of animal adaptation, homes and woodland habitats while indoor workshops build on these topics in more detail and look at teeth, skeletons, green plants etc. Our experienced tutors also offer a thriving ecology and conservation programme for older students, teaching sampling techniques and ecological statistics, as well as supporting students’own coursework investigations.

Why is this venue great for School Trips and Educational Visits?

Most children are more familiar with exotic animals from all over the world than their own native wildlife, so Wildwood provides a superb introduction to the issue of conservation within our own island. Our woodland setting provides a natural background against which to view these animals and our experienced education team draws out the best from the animals and their woodland environment to make classroom topics come to life. We believe in fun learning – we want students to leave us brimming with enthusiasm and not realizing that they have actually been taught. We enthuse children with interactive, hands-on workshops in which the participants solve problems for themselves whilst having loads of fun.

What does a typical school trip or educational visit include?

We offer a pick’n’mix programme, not a set menu of activities, and are always happy to tailor an existing workshop to an individual school’s needs or design one just for them. So the general activities list below is always available for discussion and change.

Pre-schools: close encounters with reliable animals, suitable for this young age group.

KS1: 1hr guided tours, meet an animal sessions and a range of suitable workshops, including green plants, minibeast hunts, variety of life and nocturnal animals for Yr2 SATs.

KS2: 1 or 2hr guided tours, meet an animal sessions and a range of suitable workshops, including CSI: Wildwood, adaptation, animal teeth and skeletons and Let’s Talk Wolf (SEAL programme). 1 or 2hr guided tours, meet an animal sessions and a range of suitable workshops, including CSI: Wildwood, Food digestion and poo, Nature’s recyclers, Adaptation, Animal teeth and skeletons, Evolution and inheritance and Let’s Talk Wolf (SEAL programme).

KS3/4: guided tours and half/whole day courses and workshops covering adaptation, habitats, food chains, CSI, introductions to ecology and conservation. level/IB: practical ecological sampling techniques, students’ own investigations (different coppice woodland stages, sand dune and rocky shore), conservation initiatives for native endangered species, including captive breeding/reintroduction schemes, conservation grazing and rewilding.

Do you have a YouTube Video link regarding your venue? 

Are you currently on Twitter, Facebook or other social media? 

This venue has the following accreditation:

Wildwood is proud to hold a LOTC Quality Badge (awarded September 2013). In addition, we have won a national award for the best educational programme in a small zoo for CSI: Wildwood and in 2010 were selected as one of the top six zoo case studies in the country by DEFRA for our conservation education

What size groups do they cater for?

Min group size: 10 Max group size: 250

What can they provide you with to support your school trip or educational visit?

The education team – teachers, ecologists and zoologists – have prepared a range of helpful resources to assist students and teachers, as well as trails and quizzes for more informal groups. Just ask – we’re happy to design something especially for you.

KS1 and 2: Teacher resources on a range of animals are published on our website and are free to download:

KS3 and 4: Worksheets and teacher notes are provided where relevant to the topic (e.g. adaptation/prey v predator/ecological sampling).

A-level/IB: all ecology/conservation worksheets are provided, together with explanatory support notes and useful references for students and teachers during their visit. Some scientific papers for conservation/ecology.

Can you take photos, video or audio? Are there any copyright restrictions?

Yes, children and students may take photos, video or audio, there are currently no copyright issues.

How do you arrange a risk assessment?

We can provide risk assessments to teachers in advance, both for general visits and for specific activities if applicable. Teachers are welcome to come to the
park for a free pre-visit inspection, this can be arranged through our Education team on 01227 712 111 or by email: A staff ID is required on the pre-visit day.

What are the contact details for their education officer?

We have an education team: Head of Education: Anne Riddell E-mail:

What does it cost?

Cost for group visit (min 10 per group, regardless of age)

November – March: £4

April – May: £4

June – August: £4.75*

September – October: £4 *early bird discount applies, reducing peak season cost to £4 rate, if you book before March 1. When you book a group visit with no educational activities, all persons in the group pay the group rate.

When you book a group visit with an educational activity, the following free adult places apply:

  • Children 0-7 years: 1 adult free per 4 children
  • Children 7-11 years: 1 adult free per 6 children
  • Children/students 11 years and over: 1 adult free per 10 children/students

Costs per educational activities (all max group 30):

  • 15min meet an animal session £15
  • 1hr guided tour £30
  • 2hr guided tour £50
  • 45min interactive workshop £30
  • 25min art & craft session £20
  • A-Level / IB / FE college Courses (max group size 20)
  • Half day tutor (3hrs) £75
  • Extended half day tutor (3-4hrs) £100
  • Whole day tutor (4hrs +) £130

Is specific clothing required?

Wildwood is an outdoor woodland attraction, so we ask that your class dresses appropriately for the weather and brings water and sunscreen on hot days. Please wear suitable footwear that will keep feet dry and protected. Old clothes advisable for any woodland activities – minibeast hunts/ecology.

Do you have first aid on site?

We have qualified first-aiders on site.

What facilities do they have for school trips and educational visits?

We have a shop, café and education centre with large covered verandas, toilets and picnic area. We also have a new outdoor woodland classroom which provides shelter from the weather when learning outdoors.

Schools can use our bag drop area at their own risk. Classes can eat packed lunches in our picnic area. We also have a large woodland playground with a wooden fort, towers, tube slide and drop slide (this must be supervised).

Are there disabled facilities?

Wildwood has disabled access throughout, however due to our woodland setting we would recommend that wheelchair users are assisted around the park. We can arrange loans of wheelchairs and mobility scooters free of charge by prior arrangement. Due to the animals at Wildwood we are unable to allow any dogs into the park, including guide dogs. Visitors that require assistance should contact Wildwood ahead of their visit and we will be happy to offer alternative assistance.

What are your opening days and hours?

Our opening hours change with the season, please take this a guide:

Winter – November to Mid February: 10am – 4pm (last admission 3pm)

Spring – Mid February to March: 10am - 5pm (last admission 4pm)

Summer - End of March to September: 10am - 6pm (last admission 5pm)

Autumn – October to Early November: 10am - 5.30pm (last admission 4.30pm)

Do you have any testimonials from previous customers who have visited you on an educational visit?

Pre-school: ‘I found the booking procedure, information provided and staff attitude all first class. The meet an owl experience was perfect for the pre-school children.

Primary School, Years R, 1 and 2: ‘The green plants workshop was great – a really good way to start our science topic off!'

Primary School, Year 1: ‘For our purposes, the service is excellent. We’ve been to Wildwood for the last six years and each year it has been brilliant, both in terms of the park (which just gets better every year) and the excellent workshops. The tutors are also extremely good.

Primary School, Year 3: 'Superb facilities for pre-visit and were allowed to ask any questions we thought of; also shown round the education centre and what would be expected and where we could wait. Were also impressed with the way we were dealt with during the pre-visit.’ A-level conservation: ‘I am not sure that I had personally understood the serious national/international importance of your conservation work with, for example, the water vole and the European bison.’

Is there anything else that you feel is important and want to include in your information?

Outdoor learning at Wildwood offers a chance for children to absorb information in a completely different way from classroom learning. It offers them new experiences, new resources and new surroundings to engage their interest and our experienced staff try to ensure that these experiences are fun, engaging and full of opportunities for personal discovery.


Age of Children / Pupils: Pre-school 5 – 7 years 8 – 10 years 11 – 13 years 14 – 16 years College University

Type of Visit: Adventure Playgrounds Animal Welfare Bird of Prey Centre Environment Centres Farms Field Studies Outdoor Education Storytelling Wildlife and Nature Zoos

Curriculum Topics Covered: Art and Design Citizenship English Environmental Studies History Leisure & Tourism Mathematics PSHE Science

Months Open: All Year Round January February March April May June July August September October November December