Fota Wildlife Park is one of the most popular tourist attractions in Ireland and has been awarded ‘Best Family Day Out’ for both Munster and Cork on several occasions. It is also in the Top 25 Zoos/Animal Parks in Europe in the 2015 TripAdvisor Travellers Choice Awards
Transport and Car Parking
Please note – if you choose to park your car at Fota, this means that your visit to Fota House’s grounds, frame yard garden, walled gardens and arboretum are also included in the €3 car park charge and monies raised from this charge go towards the upkeep of Fota House and Gardens. The Irish Heritage Trust, who own Fota House and Gardens is a charitable status organisation like the Wildlife Park.
Alternatively, you may travel to Fota by rail, as it has its own dedicated rail stop and the Wildlife Park has a station gate entrance which facilitates visitors who may not have a car or choose to use public transport. Please visit www.irishrail.ie for the full list of train times and connecting options.
Savannah Cafe at the Main Entrance
Visitors to Fota have two options when it comes to eating on site. Our Savannah Café is located by the main entrance – within view of the Colobus and Meerkat habitat as well as the Park’s sandpit playground – and serves a variety of snacks, hot and cold drinks, and sandwiches throughout the day. Currently offering take-away only.
The Oasis Café is situated at the opposite end of the Park (near the Irish Rail station) and has a range of hot food options including burgers, chips, and nuggets. There is a large Picnic & Rest area nearby with plenty of benches, trees, and a Marquee for shade when the sun shines.
** COVID-19 Update – Currently the Oasis Café is open for takeaway only. High-chair loan in not currently available for outdoor dining. **
Mu Cang Chai – Asian Sanctuary
** Seasonal opening hours** The food market style picnic area features Volcano Pizza, Badger and Dodo Coffee and a kiosk selling Ice Cream, Cold Drinks and some snacks an is open during the peak season.
** Seasonal opening hours** A vintage Citroen van has been repurposed as a Carter D’Or ice cream outlet from 12 to 4pm during June (weekends only) and from July to August.
The Serengeti Gift Store stocks water, soft drinks and ice-cream. (Please note the Serengeti Gift Store closes at 5.40pm during summer hours and 4.15pm during winter hours.)
Serengeti Gift Store
Looking for a takeaway treasure or a gift to surprise someone? Then venture no further than the Serengeti Gift Store, which is located by the main entrance to the Park. Decorated with trees from the island itself, the shop has items to suit every budget and stocks a huge range of soft toys, carved statues, Fota-branded merchandise, books, jewellery and educational puzzles.
The shop takes payment via Visa, Mastercard, Laser and Eurocard. Please note the Serengeti Gift Store closes around 20 minutes before the park closes, please arrive before that time to avoid disappointment.
Apart from duck food, which can be purchased from the Duck Feeder Hut beside the lake, we ask visitors not to feed any of their own food to the animals as it may make them ill or even cause their death.
Fota Wildlife Park tries to ensure that everyone has an enjoyable day when they visit, so if there’s anything extra we can do (heating baby food or special food requests), please ask a member of staff and we will do everything we can to help. Toilets, disabled toilets and baby-changing facilities are also available.
However, if you would like to purchase from our supplier Nature Planet please do so from our link. We have an online gift card shop here.
Two First Aid stations are located within the Park – one as part of the Main Entrance complex and a second near the Oasis Café.
*** Covid-19 Update – Currently daily feeding times, talks, children’s activities and tour train are NOT running. ALL playgrounds are closed. We are not currently taking group bookings. Summer Camps will not be taking place in 2020. ***
Wheelchairs and Buggies
Fota Wildlife Park is wheelchair accessible, there are four disabled/wheelchair accessible toilets located within the Park. Two at the Savannah Café, one by the Tiger Forest and one located in the Oasis café which is by the lake. There are 4 manual wheelchairs available for use free of charge, however, these are subject to availability, these are in Reception, just inside the main entry point.
Our tour train can facilitate wheelchairs and buggies (buggies must be folded) – this operates seasonally and is subject to capacity. Please call 021 481 2678 if you have any queries.
Additional Needs & Carers Policy
We have a discount of 50% on the entry ticket for a child or adult with special needs, their accompanying carer will receive entry free of charge, please have your associate members card (such as the Rainbow Club) or lanyard or carers card with you on arrival.
To book your tickets/time slot please go to the prepaid section once you have selected a time and date. Payment will be on arrival.
If you have any additional needs gaining access such as but not limited to the points below, please call our team on 021 481 2678:
- Queuing at the main gates
- Queuing in one-way system in shop
- No dogs are allowed – advice on assistance animals
Support for ASD visitors
Please download or read our social story to help prepare for your visit here.
Please ask for our free Sensory Map to help prepare for the various sensory levels you may encounter on your journey around the Park (such as heat in the Tropical House – currently closed due to Covid regulations – and the sounds some of the animals make). ‘Please note we can provide a pair of disposable ear buds if you do not have your own ear defenders – just request from our team on entry at the gates.
***** COVID-19 UPDATE ******
There are currently precautionary measures in place in the wildlife park including a required pre-booking of time slots. Please find further details here.
Please Note – there is a One-Way system in place around the wildlife park. There is also a One-Way system in the Gift Shop. There is also only a limited amount of people allowed enter the shop at one time, you may need to queue for entry.
Please Also see our Covid-19 FAQ and map of the one-way system.
Certain parts of the park remain closed. Including the Tour Train, Tropical House, Madagascan Village and ALL the playgrounds.
Video of One-Way System – (please note this video is a time lapse guide around the park and moves quickly)
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