Region: East of England

Disabled Facilities: Yes

Category: Day Trip Destinations

Address: Ventura Wildlife's Zoological Gardens, Van Hage, Amwell Hill, Great Amwell, Hertfordshire SG12 9RP

Contact: 01920 870 418



Ventura Wildlife’s Zoological Gardens is one of the UK’s newest and most interactive zoos located within the county of Hertfordshire, just a short distance from North London. We specialise in bringing learning to life with our fun and hands-on approach to education that will leave lasting memories for years to come.
The zoo is home to a variety of species including zebras, kangaroos, wallabies, emus, reindeers, lemurs, parrots & other tropical birds plus Madagascar’s largest carnivore the Fossa and the UK’s only Cuban Hutias. New for 2017, Critter Cove opens which is home to 18 different exhibits displaying a variety invertebrates, snakes, lizards and amphibians.

As a conservation and education led zoo we can cater for all types of educational visits and can incorporate a number of different topics including biology, conservation, geography, tourism and business studies amongst others. Our daily keeper talks, animal feeding demonstrations and indoor interactive animal encounter sessions are available for school and other educational groups to enjoy. We also offer guided zoo tours and tailor-made workshops.

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Why you are you a great place for educational visits? 

Within easy reach of London we pride ourselves as an interactive zoo that offers educational groups a fun and safe visit to discover a variety of amazing animals up close.

We have a personable education team that work with each educational group visit to offer a range of different educational talks and behind the scenes opportunities suitable for all ages. Our unique interactive and hands-on animal encounter workshops provide educational groups with an even greater chance to bring learning to life through touching and holding a variety of exotic animals.

Do you have the LOtC Quality Badge or any other accreditation such as AALA?
We are an institutional member of the International Zoo Educators Association (IZE) and our staff are DBS checked.

What does a typical educational visit include?
Typical educational visits to Ventura Wildlife’s Zoological Gardens include free parking and a full day’s entry wristband into the zoo including access to a range of daily talks, feeding demonstrations and interactive animal encounter shows.

Many groups choose to have a 30 minute or 1 hour educational workshop session inside The Explorers Lodge education and conference centre which can be tailored to any of the following key stages and across a choice of curriculum topics for:

Our groups for curricular topics are now listed as:

Reception & Foundation,


KS2 & KS3,

Secondary, College & Higher Education.

We offer three different educational packages:

Foot Safari Self-Guided Package,

Explorers Package,

Ultimate Adventurer’s Package.

What group sizes do you cater for?

At Ventura Wildlife’s Zoological Gardens we cater for all group sizes.

Do you provide projects, teacher’s packs, work sheets or any useful information?
Our Education team have designed several lesson plans that follow the curriculum. Worksheets and lesson plans can be provided on request should they be required. These can be discussed during pre-visits from teachers or by phone if needed.

Are you happy for children to take photos, video or audio?
Ventura Wildlife’s Zoological Gardens allows children and those on other educational group visits to take photos, video and audio recording during their visit should they wish. The zoo grounds have been designed to allow children to get as close to wildlife as possible for an engaging experience.

What is your process for booking pre arranged risk assessments?
All group educational visits to Ventura Wildlife’s Zoological Gardens are provided with an advanced general site risk assessment for each group. Pre-visits for teaching staff can be arranged in advance.

Does your venue have an education officer?
Contact Ashley or Robyn on our educational team by emailing: or telephone 01920 870 418

What is the cost of the visit?
We offer special discounted educational rates for nursery, school, college and university groups of 15 or more children/students. Our educational packages differ in price, depending what option you decide to go for. Please contact us directly for further information on options and pricing. Receive 1 FREE adult/chaperone with every 10 children/students.

Is specific clothing required for the trip?
It is recommended that suitable seasonal outdoor clothing is worn whilst visiting Ventura Wildlife’s Zoological Gardens.

Do you have first aid on site or will the group need to bring a qualified first aider?
First aiders are available on site.

Please list facilities available.
We have a range of facilities for educational group visits to benefit from including:

Zoo Welcome Centre -
Provides a meeting point for groups making their own way to the zoo. Pre-booked tickets can be collect from here.

Tiki Traders Zoovenirs-
Our souvenir shop is open daily for those looking for a memorable gift from their visit.

The Explorers Lodge Education & Conference Centre-
This explorer’s themed lodge provides an indoor educational/meeting facility that can comfortably seat 60 individuals. There is equipment in place for PowerPoint and video playback. Educational groups can use this facility for eating their pack lunch if arranged in advance.

There are two sets of toilets located around the site upon which the zoo is located.

The zoo itself does not have a Café although food and drinks can be arranged in advance of your visit. We also have links with our local restaurants who can provide a special group day time menu.

What are your disabled facilities?
The zoo shares a car park with the Van Hage Garden Centre and has a large number of free disabled parking spaces available. Groups can also reserve a coach/bus parking space to allow for easier access for those with special access requirements. Access from the car park into the zoo is entirely flat.

The zoo grounds have been designed to be accessible for groups of all ages and abilities including those who require the assistance of a wheelchair. The zoo grounds are flat. We have a series of ramps available to aid access into the indoor areas of the zoo including; The Explorers Lodge Education & Conference Centre, Tiki Traders Zoovenirs and Critter Cove.

What are your opening days and hours?

Please click here for latest opening days & hours.

(Ventura Wildlife’s Zoological Gardens is open every day except Christmas day, Boxing Day and Easter Sunday)

Do you have any testimonials from previous schools we can include?
“On behalf of all the staff and children involved on Monday I would like to thank you for all your hard work. We will definitely be coming back and I've recommended you to other teachers during a course I attended”.
The Hyde School

“A great visit that we all enjoyed, the children will be writing to you next week to express their own gratitude”.
St Mary’s School

Is there anything else that you feel is important and want to include in your information?
All educational group visitors will receive a wristband that allows one day’s unlimited entry in and out of the zoo. This way groups can enjoy the rest of the site upon which the zoo is located and the historic towns of Ware and Hertford which are located a short drive away.

The zoo is easily accessible by car, train and bus. Car parking is free of charge. Coaches and buses are welcome but we ask that you pre-book your free parking before visiting.

Don’t worry if you cannot make it to the zoo, our sister organisation Ventura Wildlife’s Animal Encounters can come to you with a whole host animals.
Visit further information.

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

Type of Visit: Animal Welfare Bird of Prey Centre Environment Centres Health & Nutrition Outdoor Education Themed Attractions Team Building Zoos

Curriculum Topics Covered: Business Studies Environmental Studies Food & Nutrition Geography Leisure & Tourism Science

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

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