At the Orana Wildlife Park, Christchurch visitors can come face to face with wildlife from across the globe and have the feel of being on an African safari without even leaving the city. Only 15 minutes from the Christchurch airport, Orana Wildlife Park is the only open-air wildlife park found in New Zealand. Over 70 species of exotic animals stroll their way around the park, and the focus of Orana is on providing visitors an unforgettable up-close experience.

Orana Wildlife Park photoPhoto by poly.kiss

New Zealand’s only open-range zoo, Orana Wildlife Park allows you to get up close and personal with animals from all over the world. The diverse complex spans 80 hectares (198 acres) and provides a home to over 400 animals, including a number of rare and endangered species. When you arrive, check the presentation and feeding schedule for the opportunity to see meerkats, giraffes, and lions enjoying a meal.

The Park opened with 28 animals from six species. During the first ten years of operation, new animals were regularly added and Stage One of the African Plains, a major expansion, was completed.

The Lion Encounter will have visitors on board a specially modified vehicle for extremely close views of the “King of Beasts” feeding through the African Lion Habitat. The daily feeding trips into the lion enclosure cost $30 (£15) each, with a minimum height restriction of 1.4 meters for safety reasons.

Orana Wildlife Park photoPhoto by nzgabriel

The Lion Encounter will give a wonderful opportunity to take a glimpse and be in awe of the size and power of these awesome predators. Imagine the thrill of hand-feeding a majestic giraffe, seeing a tiger search for food, meeting a massive white rhino face-to-face, and traveling through a pride of lions.

Get involved in the feeding process yourself by purchasing an “encounter experience.” Guided tours take place daily and are offered both on board the safari shuttle and on foot. Before you head to Christchurch, plan trip itinerary details with the user-friendly Christchurch holiday planner to make sure you see all that Christchurch has to offer, including Orana Wildlife Park. It is an interesting way to display lions and also enables us to discuss ways in which visitors can help the King of the Beasts.

Scheduled presentations occur daily. Visitors can enjoy the antics of cheetahs, tigers, Tasmanian devils, monkeys, meerkats, and more. Ninety-five percent of Orana’s income comes from gate takings and other trading activities. Fundraising is a vital focus. Orana must separately raise 100% of the funds for all capital projects, improvements, and animal transfers. A variety of sources, including philanthropic trusts, private donors, and bequests donate funds for the park.

An extensive New Zealand section features kiwi, a wide range of birds, and reptiles, plus two walk-through aviaries. Guided tours operate daily. A cafe and fantastic wildlife gift shop are on-site. Orana provides the ultimate animal adventure for everyone.

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