This is the continuation of my Bangkok Day Trips for Kids. Probably the most popular open zoo and theme park close to Bangkok is Safari World and Marine Park on the northern outskirts of Bangkok. I have taken Nong Grace here twice and she has also gone with her school. She keeps asking about going back again. The first section is the safari park where you can drive around getting quite close to the animals roaming free. Just don’t open the windows in the lion enclosure. Coach tours are available if you don’t have a car. There are a number of animals shows such as dolphins, birds and elephants. There is also a stunt show. Nong Grace also liked feeding the animals. When we were last there a combined ticket cost 700 baht
To the east of Bangkok you will find Samphran Elephant Ground. This is touted as the greatest elephant show in Thailand. In my travels I have seen many elephant shows and I must say that they are right! Here they showed the strong relationship between elephants and the Thai people. How they worked together in logging and also their important role in the wars with Burma. The battle scenes were definitely impressive though maybe a little loud for younger kids. There were also some lighter moments like a soccer match between elephants. At Samphran they also have a Crocodile Show. It was alright but I have seen much better. When we were there it cost 500 baht for adults and 300 baht for children. There are also opportunities to have your picture taken with animals, feed the animals and also ride elephants.
If you want to take your kids to the beach then you will find the nearest one at Bangsaen Beach in Chonburi Province. It is just over an hour from Bangkok. Don’t go expecting white sand and crystal clear water as this is the point along the coast where mangrove forests turn to beaches for the first time. However, it is popular with Thai people who often spend the day here at the weekend. During the week you might find the place to yourself. The beach is a good place to eat some seafood. Other local attractions include an aquarium, a Buddhist Hell park and monkey mountain.
Another open zoo near Bangkok is Khao Kheow Open Zoo in Chonburi Province. It is out in the middle of nowhere and so it is more spread out compared to Safari World. I personally like this one better as you can take your time driving around to see the animals. There are car parks throughout the zoo so you can just stop where you like to explore a certain area. If you don’t have a car you can join tram tours or rent golf carts. When we went we drove around the whole place twice as Nong Grace wanted to go back and see certain animals again. You cannot do that at Safari World. There are plenty of opportunities to feed the animals and the prices for buying food wasn’t so bad. There is also a Children’s Zoo where the kids can pet the animals. We easily spent the whole day here and will probably go back again during the summer holidays this year. The admission price was only 100 baht for adults and 50 baht for children.
Just to the south of Bangkok is the Samut Prakan Crocodile Farm and Zoo. This is in my home province and we have been here quite a few times. It has the usual crocodile wrestling show where they put their hand and head into the mouth of a crocodile. Other places have much the same show but I think this one is superior. They also have 1000’s of crocodiles of various sizes in different pens. You can buy buckets of chickens to feed the crocodiles. There is also an elephant show but it is not that exciting. But, the elephant ride here was only 50 baht when we went. There is a big lake where you can rent boats and you can also ride a train around the park. In addition the the elephants there are also zoo animals. However, their living conditions are a little sad. When we last went entrance fee was 300 baht for adults.