Reviewed by Deborah Mackenzie
Discover Amazonia is Scotland’s
Largest Indoor Tropical Rainforest!
Amazonia is a temperature controlled tropical house (it can feel very humid inside) and home to as many as 70 different species. Themed on the Amazon rainforest in South America, this unique, interesting and fun place for all ages (I would say from 3 years upwards) to visit.
It is home to several different monkeys, parrots, snakes, frogs, tarantulas, butterflies and more. Plus, there is a nocturnal area to see bats, kinkajou, snakes, frogs and scorpions.
Amazonia is part of the M&D’s Theme Park, situated within Strathclyde Country Park. Not knowing the area, it was a bit confusing knowing exactly where to go, some signage would be beneficial. Having entered the main entrance and asking directions, we were directed through a food hall/bar and arcade area before finding the building.
We were warmly greeted, and given some advice where to go and different times for handling and information talks. We arrived just in time to join in the handling, this included lots of information about each animal. We got to handle a fat tailed lizard, tortoise and Royal Python.
All animals for handling do not bite, scratch and are non-poisonous. Even if you do not want to handle them, I really advise going to hear more about them and see them really close up (Handling Sessions are available for a fee of £1.00 extra on top of normal ticket price).
The tropical area is not large and has a stream with Koi and Turtles which you can feed. They come near the bridge where you can purchase food for them, it seems they all come and you can see their mouths almost asking for the food.
In different corners of the pathway are cages with monkeys, parrots, fish, frogs and snakes. These all have notices offering information about the regions they are found, their grade on the extinct listings and fun facts. The Macaw Parrots even said hello to us.
Several species of butterflies, large and small, fly free throughout the enclosure where you can get close up and see them feeding. They have the life cycle story and an incubator where pupa hang. I loved that I could see them close up and see their beautiful colours.
The vegetation is lush and dense in places like you would expect in a jungle. Some of the more unusual plants/trees had facts about them. I would have liked to see a bit more information about them on their website as they make up the jungle and are important to the welfare of the animals.
The highlight for us in the main enclosure was the Toucan. He flies freely and can be seen high up in the canopy.
In the nocturnal enclosure my favourite was the scorpions, they are fascinating as when you shine a light on them they glow.
We experienced the Interactive Room, where you step virtually into the jungle and can select the areas you are wanting more information about. It is very educational and worth taking time to go through it all. Plus, the catch the butterfly game is fun! When visiting make sure you ask as it is not available just to walk into.
The gift shop has a variety of drinks, snacks and gifts. Once you have purchased your ticket you can come and go during opening hours, this is a good idea as it gets hot inside and each time you go back in you see something different.
We have a fantastic time, it was interesting, educational and fun. We took our time and went back to areas that really appealed to us. Sitting on one of the many benches within the enclosure watching the different animals and being part of something unique made a really enjoyable afternoon.
TIP: Do not rush! Take your time and see the many exotic animals, insects and plants. Ask questions of the staff they are only too happy to help and give you information.
Tickets cost: Adult: £6.20 (£5.75 online) / Child: £4.75 (£4.50 online) / Family of 4: £18.35 (£16.55 online)
For more information or to book tickets conline visit www.discoveramazonia.co.uk.
Amazonia, Strathclyde Country Park, Motherwell, Scotland, ML1 3RT | 01698 333 777