Wildlife park Höllohe is the free animal park near Hohenfels that your kids will love. There are 30 hectacres of paved and gravel paths, penned and field-roaming wildlife, and even flower and herb gardens. Founded in 1989, the park is run by a committee of volunteers. Their website is entirely in German, but from what I was able to figure out using Google Translate, it sounds like the park is run by some sort of foundation, rather than by the German government.
I took our daughter here after a trip to the giant Globus store in Schwandorf. We wandered for several hours, and had a really good time! The park’s flat, gravel paths are easy to walk. If I go back, I’ll take our jogging stroller, since it would be a little easier to handle on the gravel trails, but honestly, I did alright with the city stroller you see in the picture, above.
The whole park is supposed to be handicap accessible, too. There’s a handicap restroom, according to the website, and the trails are supposed to be wheelchair accessible. I say “supposed to be” because I can’t personally vouch for the accessibility of the trails or restroom.
A Huge Playground in the Forest
One of our favorite parts of the nature park was the great big playground right in the middle of the forest. There was palyground equipment for little and big kids, both, and the whole area would be pleasantly shaded on hot summer days by the top story of trees climbing into the sky high above. The entire play area had pea gravel beneath it. The gravel was fun for toddlers (what toddler doesn’t love to pick up gravel or sand and watch it fall through their fingers?), and I assume it’d give a little cushion to the bigger kids who might be doing more jumping, rough-housing, and hard play.
I loved the play area, but was a little freaked out by this guy. Public art? Creepy watcher over the forest below? You decide:
A Big, Beautiful Lake
My other favorite thing about the nature park was the lake in the middle of it. The lake is called the Höllohe Weiher. I’m not sure exactly how large it is, but I’m guessing at least seven or eight acres. There’s a trail that goes around the whole lake, so you can take in the views from all sides. There’s even a quaint little goose island on one side and a pretty fountain on the other:
A Children’s Festival Every August
Third Sunday in August, there’s a large children’s festival that starts at 2:00 p.m. Kids, their parents, and their grandparents are invited to attend. Every child wins a stuffed animal, and the kids get to compete in obstacle courses, etc. We didn’t go to this, but it seems like the kind of thing American families overseas might enjoy checking out. I thought it was worth mentioning.
So Many Animals!
There were so many animals at the park! We saw all sorts of water and land birds, goats, sheep, deer, rabbits, a peacock, and all sorts of other cute critters. There are also guinea pigs, pheasants, storks, barn owls, canaries, zebra finches, ducks, tortoises, and a petty zoo!
You can feed the animals in most of the enclosures, but the park asks that you only use the food that they make available for you. You can buy animal food near the Biergarten and also near the goats.
Trees, Plants, and Flowers
The entire park is in a forest, so there are trees and greenery throughout. There’s a pretty rose pavilion in central area near the entrance, and flowers, herbs, and vegetables grow in other parts of the park. Here’s a picture of the raised herb garden. I thought it was really pretty!
The park has a cafe and Biergarten where you can purchase snacks, drinks, ice cream, coffee, and cake.
Hours & Location
The park is open March through October from 1400-1800, daily, and May through ugust from 1400-1900 daily. From November through Frebruary, it’s only open on the weekends. If the weather’s bad, expect it will be closed.
Game and Leisure Park Höllohe
The nature park is located northeast of Burglengenfeld off of the West of the A93. It’s in the district of Schwandorf about an hour south of Vilseck and 25 minutes east of Hohenfels. Here it is on the map:
The park’s website is in German, but you can get the gist of things with Google Translate: http://www.wildpark-hoellohe.de
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