Land of the Lions is ZSL London Zoo’s biggest and most ambitious new attraction which was unveiled to the public at Easter and quickly has become a firm favourite.
The £5.7m attraction Land of the Lions transports visitors to the Lions wild home in the Gir Forest region, in the Indian state of Gujarat. Rickshaws, bicycles, sacks of spices, maps, rangers’ huts, and even a life-size truck – researched, sourced and shipped from India – are dotted around Land of the Lions, both inside and out of the lions’ domain, which will highlighting the uniquely close relationship in which Asiatic lions live with people in their native Indian habitat.
Visitors to the attraction enter through a stone archway, before picking up their ‘park pass’ at the Gir Tourist Information centre. They’ll then explore Sasan Gir Train Station or embark on a journey on the overhead walkway, to discover the troop of lively Hanuman langur monkeys, and watch the lions in their forest home.
Visitors have an almost ‘windowless-view’ of the big cat’s enclosure, as visitors enter the crumbling ruin of an amphitheatre-style Lion Temple.
Part of the attraction feature interactive adventures that replicate what some of the issues that rangers in the wild have to deal with. Wild Asiatic lions are found only in the Gir Forest region and are protected by law, however they are under threat due to disease outbreaks and conflict with human developments.
The Land of the Lions is part of London Zoo’s drive to bring a more authentic understanding of an animal’s habitat and how the relationship between animal and humans is often quite complex. The recreation of the Lions wild home in the Gir Forest region and how local guides, rangers and people react to sharing their home with lions gives some insights into how people can often threaten nature but also provide sanctuary. This particular attraction is part of the London Zoo experience and is included in the main ticket, however for a very different experience, Gir Lion Lodge in the Land of the Lions development allows some visitors to stay overnight as part of a package deal.
Land of the Lions will support and promote ZSL’s international conservation efforts to protect Asiatic lions.
Visiting London Guide Rating – Highly Recommended
For more information or book tickets, visit the London Zoo website here
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