Adopting both the safari and walking tour format, Thoiry Zoo is an excellent French wildlife park. Are you planning to visit it? Here is all the useful information you need to know before going.
Zoo Safari Thoiry: a rare concept in France!
The Thoiry Safari Zoo is a must-see destination for nature and wildlife lovers.
Located about 40 kilometers from Paris, this unique animal park is an immersive experience that allows you to discover many animal species in their natural habitat.
The Thoiry Safari Zoo offers a visit in two parts:
- The safari tour allows you to discover wild animals in a natural environment.
- The walking tour of the park takes you through the animals in enclosures and themed areas.
If you don’t have a car, you can take the safari in a bush truck. With other visitors, you will follow the same route as those who come with their own vehicle.
The park also offers entertainment and shows for young and old, as well as playgrounds and food courts.
A safari offers a different look at the animals | Source: Pekpicts/Shutterstock.com
If the zoo of Beauval remains the largest in France, Thoiry and its safari attract many visitors. This place is ideal to spend a relaxed and original moment.
What can you see at Thoiry Zoo?
At Thoiry Safari Zoo, visitors can discover a wide variety of wild animals from all over the world. Without mentioning all of them, here are those highlighted on the zoo’s website:
- African lions
- Siberian tigers
- black panthers
- white rhinoceros
Concerning the activities of the zoo of Thoiry, you will have the possibility of making:
- A driving safari through the African savanna, to observe wild animals in the wild.
- A walking tour of the different thematic areas: the Tropical Greenhouse, the Educational Farm, the Aquatic Area, the Australian Aviary, the Vivarium, the Elephant Temple, the Asian Plain, the Bear Forest, the Lion Territory…
- Animations and shows proposed throughout the day: animal feeding, raptor flight demonstrations, meetings with the caretakers…
- Playgrounds for children, food and beverage areas and souvenir stores.
What is the entrance fee for Thoiry Zoo?
The tickets purchased allow you to visit the zoo and do the safari in unlimited.
Thoiry Safari Zoo entrance fees:
- 1 day ticket: 30€ for adults / 25€ for children
- 2-day ticket: 50€ for adults / 35€ for children.
If you live close to the zoo, an annual pass is available for 62€ for adults and 45€ for children. With this pass, you can visit the zoo as many times as you like over a one-year period.
How long does a visit to Thoiry Safari Zoo last?
On average, the zoo recommends a visit time of:
- 1h for the safari by car
- 3h for the visit of the zoo on foot.
This is a full-day activity. If you love wildlife parks, the visit will be even longer.
Where is the Zoo Safari Thoiry located?
The exact address of the Zoo Safari is Rue du Pavillon de Montreuil, 78770 Thoiry.
How to get to Thoiry Safari Zoo?
By car, the nearest highway is the A13. On this road, take the exit “Thoiry.” The D76 and then the D11 roads will take you to the entrance of the zoo.
If you don’t have a car, you can come and do the Thoiry safari. To do so, take bus 78 which leaves from the stations of Mantes-la-Jolie, Saint-Quentin-en-Yvelines and Villiers Neauphle Ponchartrain. Then, get off at the “Thoiry” stop.
Then, in the park, you have the option of the “bush truck.” For 10€ per person, your place in the truck allows you to do the safari. During the trip, a park keeper will give you a maximum of information about the animals.
What are the opening hours of the Zoo Safari Thoiry?
The opening hours depend on the time of year.
From May to the end of the summer, the hours are from 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m., with the entry to the zoo possible until 5:00 p.m. The park is then open every day of the week.
During the off-peak period, there are a few days of closure, and the hours are from 11:00 to 17:00.
Thoiry Zoo: my opinion
I came out of the Thoiry zoo with a rather mixed opinion.
The safari part of the zoo is undoubtedly its major asset. Riding in a car in the middle of animals in semi-liberty is exciting and gives a feeling of adventure. I had never done it in France, and only once in Quebec, and I love the concept.
We are close to the animals without disturbing them in their environment. Not all animals are always visible, but it is much better to feel them in freedom than in a narrow cage. So, I am happy to accept that I may not see all the animals during a safari.
For the walking tour, it leaves something to be desired compared to other zoos I have visited. The enclosures seem less vast and less well arranged than those of Beauval or La Palmyre. The number and diversity of species present are also less impressive.
If you want to do the safari, that’s a big yes. If you plan to do only the walking part, I think other French zoos are better.
What other activities can I do near Thoiry Zoo Safari?
Ideally located, the Thoiry Zoo has many other activities nearby. Here is a non-exhaustive selection:
- Thoiry Castle: located right next to the park, Thoiry Castle is a magnificent example of 17th century architecture surrounded by an English park and a French garden.
- The Regional Natural Park of the Haute Vallée de Chevreuse: located 20 minutes by car from the zoo, this natural park offers hiking, biking…
- The Palace of Versailles: Visit the castle, the gardens and the estate of Marie-Antoinette, as well as the historical center of the city.
- Dozens of activities and monuments in Paris: the Eiffel Tower, the Louvre, Notre-Dame Cathedral, the Marais district, the Champs-Élysées, the Orsay Museum, the Jardin des Plantes, shows…