Dubai Safari: Breakfast with the birds, behind-the-scenes tours among new season attractions
Visitors can feed and brush animals like rhinoceroses, giraffes, and elephants
The early bird catches... the French toast. Sounds like a flight of fancy? Not at Dubai Safari, which is giving visitors the chance to enjoy breakfast in the company of some exotic birds as part of its new season offerings.
Several brand-new attractions were unveiled at a media preview on Sunday ahead of the park re-opening on Monday, September 27. The 'breakfast with birds' package is priced at Dh2,000 and can host six visitors; park authorities told Khaleej Times.
Visitors can enjoy an array of tempting breakfast dishes while perched high above the Dubai Safari Aviary in the African village for 1.5 hours. The Safari crew will educate visitors with ornithological facts, and visitors can also feed and interact with exotic species such as the Australian cockatiel and the red-billed toucan.
"Booking must be done three days in advance, and the package does not include the Safari Journey, a guided bus tour. After breakfast, visitors can tour the rest of the park," said one of the guides.
The Dubai Safari has also launched various attractions, including the 'King of the Safari' tour for Dh2,500 for 10 persons and a 'Behind the scenes' package worth Dh1,200 for 10 guests, park authorities told Khaleej Times during the media tour.
The 'King of Safari' package includes a personal guide and vehicle that will take visitors on a guided tour of the park. "All guests will be given a gift box containing a plush doll. This package includes the Safari Journey. Guests can also enjoy VIP parking and will have fast-track entry into every attraction," said the guide. Those who opt for the King of the Safari package can also feed exotic birds and giraffes while on tour.
For the first time, the wildlife park has launched a behind-the-scenes experience as well. "This package allows visitors to get close to the animals, learn about their habitats and ways of caring for them with the guidance of an animal shepherd," said the Safari guides. With the behind-the-scenes package, guests can interact and hold the park's resident four-year-old boa constrictor Jack.
While on the behind-the-scenes tour, visitors can feed the animals, brush them, and gain access to the Dubai Safari Veterinary Hospital. "We will also show guests how animals are treated for various ailments, the holding and quarantine areas, and veterinary hospital pharmacy and conservation research areas. Guests can brush and feed the rhinoceroses, giraffes, and elephants as part of this tour," said another guide. Visitors can also learn the basics of animal training while working with the coatimundi species of animals and macaw birds.
Apart from the basic park entry tickets, the wildlife park has launched a 'plus tickets' package. They are given access to the Safari's train system, transporting them to all attractions in the 116-hectare facility. Regular ticket holders will have to walk between exhibits. Visitors can also use the services of a 'super taxi' for Dh10 per adult and Dh5 for a child.
Some new animal species have been introduced in the Arabian Desert Safari section of the park. "We have some new Arabian wolves and camels and several new shows in the Explorer village and Asian theatre," the guide added.
The Education Centre has also launched several activities for kids, such as Dubai Safari passport, creating a bird feeder out of plastic bottles, and other interactive events.
Ahmed Al Zarooni, director of Public Parks and Recreational Facilities Department at Dubai Municipality, said: "The park offers an immersive animal safari experience that is among the best in the world… Visitors can come face-to-face with diverse animals — such as ungulates, carnivores, birds, reptiles, primates and small mammals, including several endangered ones. They also have opportunities to learn about their nature and habitats in detail."
Commenting on the new attractions, Dawoud Al Hajri, director-general of Dubai Municipality, said, “This season, the Dubai Safari Park team has worked hard to ensure an enjoyable experience for all visitors to the park, especially with the upcoming hosting of the Expo global event in Dubai.”
New season activities
In its new season, the park is witnessing the presence of new animals, such as the squirrel monkey, the Mona monkey, the Arabian wolf, and the northern white-cheeked gibbon. The park will also host a leopard exhibition.
The Arab wolves area has been expanded with 10,000 square meters, which contains many local trees and plants, in addition to the formation of sand dunes and water, due to the importance of creating a suitable environment for these animals. The new area is considered the largest island, sheltering the Arabian wolves.
The 116-hectare park is home to around 3,000 animals, including 78 species of mammals — 10 different carnivores and 17 primates — 50 types of reptiles; 111 kinds of birds and amphibians.
Top 5 things to check out at Dubai Safari this season:
1. Enjoy breakfast with the birds
2. Create a bird feeder from plastic
3. Hang out with Jack the Boa
4. Go on a VIP 'King of the Safari tour
5. Learn to train animals
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