There is no doubt to my mind that Pairi Daiza is one of the best attractions in Belgium. I would dare to say that it is probably also one of the best animal parks you can visit in Europe such is the beauty of this dream garden of 55 hectares.
Pairi Daiza can be found in Brugelette within the ruins of the Cistercian Abbey of Cambron and is protected from the outside world by a wall that stretches three kilometres. It means enclosed garden in ancient Persian. It is the oldest known name for paradise. This is really a paradise for children and adults alike.
The garden is an architectural and cultural treasure. You will be surprised by the attention to detail that has gone into the development of the park. The architecture of the garden has been created by workers from China, Indonesia, Thailand and Africa adding to the authenticity to the place.
The park is constantly being upgraded so no visit is the same. This year, to receive the pandas, the already massive Chinese garden (the largest in Europe) has been enlarged.
I must confess that I have lost count as to how often we have been to this park. This is the third consecutive year we get a season ticket (if you go twice in a season you are better off getting a season ticket) and we and the children never get bored of visiting this botanical garden and animal park.
This year, there is the obvious added attraction of two Pandas which have been given to the park by the Chinese government for 15 years.
At Pairi Daiza you will find first and foremost nature, with beautiful ancient trees, huge birds of all kinds flying around the park, beautiful ruins of the Cisterian Abbey, flower beds and beautiful plants coming from across the world.
There is an aquarium within the park which is well worth a visit as well as a huge playground just below it.
The train ride, always a winner with the children is not running this year and will only be ready for next season because the park has been enlarged. It is maybe a pity since this is one of the best ways to view the beauty of this park.
If you have never been to this park (and you live in Belgium) then you might hesitate before getting a season ticket. But it is worthwhile given that the park has now grown to the extent that it has become difficult to view it in one day.
The park is divided into different sections including the Cite des Immortels which includes the pandas and leopards, the Terre des Origines with lions, tigers, elephants, camels, rhinos, hippos, giraffes and zebras among others. There is also the Royaume de Ganesha with a temple and other animals, the terre du froid and two lakes with an incredible variety of birds. There is the Porte des Profondeurs, the area with the aquarium, seals, otters and penguins among others as well as the Porte du Ciel.
Pairi Daiza also has a number of places where to eat. The most impressive is the new Brasserie which serves typical brasserie food and also has a brewery inside where they brew their own beer of Domaine Cambron. Both beers made here are worth trying.
No blogpost can do justice to this marvellous place. I therefore leave you to enjoy some photos of the park.
The park is open everyday from the start of the Easter holidays through to the end of the All Saints holiday. This year the park will therefore close on 2 November.
Details on the daily passes or annual subscriptions can be found on Pairi Daiza’s website.