Region: South East

Disabled Facilities: Yes

Category: Day Trip Destinations

Address: Colden Common, Winchester, Hampshire SO21 1JH

Contact: 01962 -777970



 A warm welcome to school groups from the Marwell Education Team!  A visit to Marwell Wildlife is a chance to get close to the wonders of the natural world – and play a big part in helping to save them.  From ring-tailed coatis to red-eyed tree frogs, laughing kookaburra to frilled lizards, giraffe-nosed catfishes to bat-eared foxes – our 140-acre park is home to an incredible range of exotic and endangered species, in beautiful, landscaped surroundings.

At Marwell Zoo we offer a wide range of school visit options for all ages and abilities, from self guided tours, to workshops and day-long conferences. Have a look through our key stage specific website pages to find out more.

Our workshops have been expertly tailored to suit students from pre-school to A Level, with provision also made for students with a wide variety of special education needs. All of our sessions are hands-on, interactive and engaging, with many allowing students the opportunity to meet a live animal.

We are a ‘Learning Outside the Classroom’ provider, and we were amongst the first zoos to get the quality badge. We are also the first ‘Makaton Friendly’ zoo.

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

We provide a range of fun, hands on workshops, most of which have some animal contact. The workshops are curriculum linked and developed by our education team, most of whom are qualified and time served teachers themselves.

We have 3 classrooms and a lecture theatre specifically for our education workshops. Not forgetting of course that there are 140 acres of zoo to discover with hundreds of animals to see, hear and smell!  

Out in the park itself we have six giant treasure chests, known as Discovery Boxes, which are filled to bursting with interactive activity ideas to help you find out more about some of the animals at Marwell Zoo! These include activities for all ages and abilities which meet a range of learning styles.  

We also have a huge number of free, downloadable resources that school groups are welcome to make use of when planning pre, during and post visit activities.

As a conservation charity our mission is connecting people with nature. The work that we do with schools is a great way to achieve this, as we have over forty thousand school children visiting each year, so visits from school groups are very important to us.

What does a typical school trip or educational visit include?

School visits can be Self Guided Park Visits, where schools take their children round the park, or it can include a 40 minute class based Educational Workshop.  

Booking one of our curriculum linked educational workshops will guarantee that you get the most from your visit to Marwell Zoo.

They’ve been expertly tailored to suit students from pre-school to A Level, and also cater for students with a wide variety of special education needs. All of our sessions are hands-on, interactive and engaging, with many allowing students the opportunity to meet a live animal. We also offer longer workshops in the Autumn and Spring terms that focus on using working scientifically skills.

For those who want a more comprehensive educational experience for their GCSE, GCE and vocational groups they can choose an engaging and interactive half day conference designed to match the current curriculum requirements. Not only that we have some brilliant daily talks which are delivered by our Public Engagement Team. Check the times of the talks on our website.

Do you have a YouTube Video link regarding your venue?

Are you currently on Twitter or Facebook?

Twitter @marwellwildlife

What size groups do they cater for?

At Marwell we are very proud of our purpose built Science & Learning Centre which boasts a spacious lecture theatre with a capacity of 80 students and three classrooms capable of holding 30 students at a time. Workshops

We can have 30 pupils per workshop and run up to 3 workshops at any one time. You can check workshop availability and make bookings quickly and easily using our online booking system.


We run day-long conferences for post 14 students during the autumn and summer terms. There are 70 spaces available on each day, but they book up fast, so book now!

Self-Guided Visits

There is no minimum or maximum amount of people for a Self Guided Park Visit. So whether you’re a home educating family with just one child, or a whole school groups with hundreds, you can book your visit online now.

For full details visit

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

Our Education Team has developed a wide range of free downloadable resources for students of all abilities, covering EYFS to Post 14. Some of the resources have been developed with teachers; so feedback on them is always welcome.

If you want to help create some or have had a great idea to share please send it to us and we may be able to add it to our resources too! Many of the resources link directly to the education workshops that we offer, but all can be enjoyed on their own while out and about in the zoo.

The resources are carefully researched and trialled by the Education team in order to match them with the current National Curriculum. All of these fantastic resources can be downloaded for free from our website prior to your visit. With a range of resources for pre, during and post visit, you can run a project or scheme of work with your class with minimal planning.

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

We are more than happy for children and teachers to take photographs or video clips during workshops; we just want to make sure this doesn’t get in the way of the fun!

How do you arrange a risk assessment?

Once you have booked in for your workshop or self guided park visit feel free to visit us and have a look around, check out the facilities, test drive any of the resources, complete a risk assessment or book  a quick chat with a member of the Education Team.

You and your colleagues are welcome to come for a free recce visit on whichever day best suits you. We recommend you take us up on the recce visit to plan your day, especially if you are new to Marwell, we are a large site! If you would like to talk to a member of the teaching team, please get in touch to arrange a time.

Use our risk assessment and park rules to develop your own for your group.

What are the contact details for their education officer?

We have a large team made up of the following:  Head of Education, Steve. Education Coordinators; Sue, Sharon and Grainne who focus on a specific areas of work, Early Years, SEN, KS1-4 and Post 14. We have Hilary who is our Public Engagement coordinator.

We also have Education Officers Clare, Jane and Francesca who are involved in delivery and resource creation for schools. Finally we have Steph, Jen and Megan who are public engagement officers who are involved in delivery to our guests in the zoo. If you would like to know more about who we are please speak to our Education Business Administrator Andy Welsh 01962 777 970

What does it cost?

The below tickets prices are valid Monday – Friday during Hampshire LEA term times for all educational group visits, including schools, colleges, nurseries, playgroups, home educating families, charities and adult learners.

If you wish to be invoiced you will be invoiced after the trip and charged for the exact number of pupils who enter the zoo. The invoice will incur a £5 admin charge.

If you do not wish to be invoiced you can pay on the day, at the gate, through cash, school credit card or school cheque.

If you pay by cheque you will need to make this payable to Marwell Wildlife. We suggest you write the cheque on the morning of your trip so the numbers are correct, as we cannot issue refunds.

Student Entry: Autumn Term  - £5 per pupil Spring Term  - £5 per pupil Summer Term - £7.20 per pupil Educational


£20 per workshop (per 30 pupils) £40 Working Scientifically workshop (70 minutes for up to 30 pupils – Only available autumn and spring terms)

Post 14 Conferences: £12 per student (includes zoo entry) Staff and Helpers Adults free on a ratio of 1:6 (EYFS) / Adults free on a ratio of 1:3 (KS1 and up). Any adult coming as 1:1 SEN or disability support will be free on top of that allowance. Additional adults £7.50.

Is specific clothing required?

We can try to make sure you have a truly inspirational day out at the zoo but we really can’t control the weather. We have a few under cover animal houses and picnic areas should the weather be poor, but we would suggest the children have suitable footwear and coats! In addition, if we are going to get a glimpse of the sun then sunscreen and water bottles are strongly recommended!

Do you have first aid on site?

The zoo has two qualified first aiders on duty daily, a first aid room and a defibrillator for the use of staff and guests if required. Just let the nearest Marwell staff member know and they will radio for assistance.

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

•    Spacious indoor and outdoor picnic areas

•    Adventure play-grounds (for under 12 year olds only)

•    A range of kiosks for hot snacks and refreshments

•    Four toilet blocks, all with facilities for the disabled

•    Souvenirs, snacks and postcards at the Ark Gift Shop, as well as pre-orderable souvenir bags for school groups

•    Qualified First Aiders always available

•    Free road train to save weary legs!

•    Free coach and car parking

Are there disabled facilities?

We welcome guests with disabilities together with their helpers and carers. A limited number of manual wheelchairs are available to hire for free, although a small deposit is required. Phone ahead on 01962 777407 if you’d like us to reserve one for you.

All our toilets have disabled cubicles and for guests with severe disabilities we have a Changing Places toilet facility opposite Tropical World with radar key access.

Assistance dogs are welcome; however access is restricted in a few areas due to the sensitive nature of our animals.

•    Hearing loop (available in two classrooms, let us know at time of booking if you require this

•    Use of basic Makaton in your session

•    Use of Rebus symbol cards for matching

•    Sensory sessions can be based on animals generally or themed to adaptation, conservation

•    Special car parking area in main car park

•    Free road trains, one with special carriage accessible to wheelchair users

•    Ample toilet facilities for guests with disabilities

•    Ark Gift Shop with wide aisles for wheelchair access

•    Manual wheel chairs are available to hire from our entrance gate free of charge. There is limited availability during busy times so please pre-book before your visit by emailing -

What are your opening days and hours?

We are open at 10.00am every day except Christmas day. Closing times vary depending upon the time of year so please check the website for information.

Our workshops sessions run from:

10.30 – 11.15

11.30 – 12.15

12.30 – 13.15

13.30 – 14.15 (during the summer term only)

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

‘Thank you. We very much enjoyed the trip and the talk. All the pupils and staff had a great day’ Bryanston School

‘Booking this was made very easy with knowledgeable staff to talk to’ Chichester College - Brinsbury Campus

‘What is on offer is great and the Zoo continues to provide a unique opportunity for students to immerse themselves in Biology for the day - they have been very positive about the trip and we will be back next year’ Gillingham School

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

Whether you’ve come for an educational workshop or a self guided visit, it’s definitely worth planning your day around our daily programme of talks and feeds.

We can think of no better way than to engage with your learners than with a fun filled inspirational visit to Marwell Zoo!

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 Green Awareness Outdoor Education Parks and Gardens Picnic Areas Science & Technology Wildlife and Nature

Curriculum Topics Covered: Environmental Studies Science

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