Friday, 13 January 2017

Fantastic Beasts - a new breed of animal attraction

Magical encounters with fantastic beasts as Yorkshire holidaymakers discover a new breed of animal attraction


Butterfly clouds, live birdsong festivals, and royal appointments with queen bees are just some of the magical encounters on offer in Yorkshire, UK, as holidaymakers to York and its rural neighbour Ryedale are being encouraged to stand up for British wildlife.

With 40 - 70% of native species predicted to become extinct if action is not taken, Ryedale’s tourism businesses are working hard to ‘find a room’ for the neglected and disappearing wildlife. They are encouraging visitors to shun expensive holidays abroad to enjoy free safaris in one of the country’s most beautiful landscapes, encountering some of the UK’s rarest and undervalued wildlife.

Badger and camera in Ryedale

“The Brits are a nation of animal lovers,” explains Craig Nattress of Visit Ryedale, the partnership behind the rural renaissance. “We’re captivated by David Attenborough, and our holiday bucket lists often include the chance to encounter rare creatures - but we tend to ignore our own native wildlife! We’re trying to change that in Ryedale, encouraging visitors to celebrate those quintessentially English magical encounters with nature that are so threatened – spiralling larks in summer meadows, brown hares racing across autumn’s stubble fields, colourful meadows of
Butterfly and lavender
wildflowers with the hum of honeybees, the spring-time peregrinations of baby toads, a glimpse of shy deer in broad-leaved woodland glades. These simple moments are so special – but if they’re forgotten, they’ll easily be lost.”

Visitors to the area can enjoy many close – unusual and free - encounters with wildlife, whilst also giving native creatures a happy future.

Why not wander through butterfly clouds and get a free ticket to live birdsong festivals, as the area’s visitor attractions plant miles and miles of colourful wildflower meadow and thousands of native trees, teeming with nature.

Make a royal appointment and get suited up to meet the queen of some of the UK’s happiest bees (and their besotted beekeeper), as ancient orchards are restored – with the chance to taste both the fruits and honey of their labours.

Child and lemursDiscover a new breed of animal attraction: historic country estates, once home to medieval monks and powerful barons, are now ‘des res’ for wildlife, while theme parks are nature’s playgrounds.

Introducing the Great Yorkshire Safari – wildlife guaranteed, it’s on your doorstep, and it’s free! And for something a little different, how about a safari by steam on the North Yorkshire Moors Railway, or even by husky?

A personal nature show (without roughing it) is on offer in Yorkshire. In the comfort of a luxury holiday home eat breakfast with the ‘deer’ neighbours, or watch chicks hatching live in their nests via a webcam direct on the living room TV set!

Even artists are going wild! This is your chance to meet top international wildlife artists and craftspeople in their natural habitat – their workshops, or even their gardens!

Wildlife-friendly farming attracts the country’s top chefs and producers (and a golden harvest of awards and plaudits…).

Visit Ryedale is supported by Ryedale District Council and over 700 tourism businesses. Working in partnership with Visit YorkVisit Hull & East Yorkshire, Welcome to Yorkshire and Visit England, Ryedale welcomes 5 million tourists annually, supporting 7,000 jobs.  York receives 6.8 million visitors a year, supporting 20,300 jobs.

To plan the holiday adventure of a lifetime to Ryedale, a must-see destination, and support British wildlife, visit or

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