If you love your crocodilians and your reptiles make it snappy and book a crocodile encounter! On a scale of 1 to 10 these experiences come in at around 11 for anyone who is fascinated by these often misunderstood creatures – especially when we tell you a highlight is actually going swimming with the crocs!
It’s all about the beady eyes and scaly skin when you arrive at this reptile specialist in the Filton area of Bristol. And no we’re talking about the staff we’re referring to the dozens of residents which include snakes crocodiles lizards geckos and a whole lot more. Of course they’re not native to these shores which is why it’s such a privilege to be able to get up close to such exotic breeds and also why it’s important to understand what looking after and caring for these creatures involves.
There are three encounters up for grabs with the crocodiles and their buddies. Short and sweet the self-guided tour of the venomous snakes and the crocs will have you speechless as you stare wide-eyed into their vivariums and they stare back at you not flinching or moving an inch as they fix their gaze. Be wowed by the iridescent skin of the Spitting Cobra see if you can spot the forked tongue of the Rattlesnake and if the King Cobra does that hooding thing well it’s a sight to behold!
Now when you were younger your Mum probably told you to be careful near water so goodness knows what she’d say if she knew you were going to be jumping into a little pool and splashing about with crocodiles. But Pete the centre owner here assures us that Ali (as in Ali G as in Ali Gator) and Gidget the Croc love nothing more than a doggy paddle around the water followed by a nice cuddle afterwards! If you’ll lucky they will also do that thing where just the tip of their jaws and eyes are poking out of the water as they glide silently without even making a ripple on the water’s surface…!
If taking the plunge for a head on meeting with a croc is your idea of crocodilian heaven book the Swimming with a Gator tour (that also includes a guided tour of those venomous snakes) or go for the full on Crocodile Keeper experience. The latter gives you a full five hours at the shop and includes the chance to watch the feeding process (with live locusts crickets mice pinkies and roaches most often on the menu) and assist with the training feeding and cleaning of the gators and crocs. Now that’s what we call an awesome crocodile encounter!