Knuthenborg Safari Park
Knuthenborg Safari Park is Northern Europe's largest animal park, with approximately 1000 animals from all over the World. You get so close to the animals that you get to touch them most of the time - you touch camels, giraffes, ostriches and llamas as well as the more traditional petting zoo kinds of animals. And the experience of closeness to these animals will probably stay with you for the rest of your life.
Knuthenborg is best experienced from a car or a bus. Not only because it's a 1 1/2 hour drive South of Copenhagen and not that easy to reach by public transport, but also because you need to be inside a car or a bus to be able to visit some of the more dangerous animals.
This camel family has decided that it wants to be petted by humans, and lay down next to a road intersection and wait for visitors to show up and pat them. They do it because they want to, not because of training or coercion of any kind. Because of their experiences with previous visitors they are very trusting and possibly just a little bit spoiled.
Want to get close to a giraffe? No problem - open the windows or the sunroof of your car and wait for one to arrive. But beware of your watch - a giraffe has a tongue which can be as much as 40 centimeters or 16 inches long, and it's incredibly agile because in the wild they feed on leaves they pick off treebranches high up. In Knuthenborg Safari Park they also try to pick wristwatches.
The monkey area is huge and very lively. But don't miss the half ape cage next door, with the lemurs. This Red Vari is naturally good at staring, and does so uninhibitedly. You walk around inside the lemur cage and have the lemurs running all around you, climbing ropes and being generally curious about what you have in your hands, so be careful.
The animals in Knuthenborg Safari Park are visibly relaxed and at ease most of the day. Here a zebra kid is playing with its mother. However, the animals that are hunted in nature get nervous and restless around sunrise and sunset, as these are the times of day that they are mostly attacked by predators in the wild. There are no predators for them to worry about in Knuthenborg Safari Park, but the behaviour is very deeply rooted in their nature.
The one place you need to stay protected is in the tiger area. You enter by car with all windows and doors closed, and stay inside the car or bus at all times. This Siberian Tiger is relaxing on top of a treetrunk, but never quite sleeps - it is aware of what is happening around it at all times.
You get very close to the three rhinoceroses in the park when they come walking close to the roads. They seem as calm and relaxed as all the other animals in the park, but don't take chances. You are able to study them very closely from the comfort of your car. When you leave the Knuthenborg Safari Park you will truly have had one of the most unique experiences of your life.