Grey nomads set to camp with lions … in Australia!

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Monarto safari park camping for grey nomads
Some grey nomads may be excited by safari park camping ... other may be wary of the elephant (lion) in the room! Photo montage: Cazza

Grey nomads travelling in Australia could be given the chance to camp in ‘Africa’ if  the founder of Jayco Australia has his way.

Victorian businessman, Gerry Ryan, has already unveiled plans to create a unique free-range safari experience at Monarto Zoo, 60 kilometres southeast of Adelaide … but that could be just the start.

With a $40 million investment, Monarto is already set  – by 2022 – become the largest safari park outside of Africa.

The Adelaide Advertiser reports that guests will stay overnight in luxury accommodation and awake to sights and sounds more commonly associated with places like Kruger National Park in South Africa.

Herds of animals – ranging from giraffes to zebras to rhinoceros to antelope – will graze on hectares of tall wheatgrass and drink from freshly-made waterholes as guests soak up the ambience sipping on lattes or gin and tonics – depending on the time of day.

However, it has now emerged that beyond the high-end accommodation, caravanners and campers have not been forgotten.

Monarto director Peter Clark told the Advertiser that every grey nomad in Australia would put the free-range zoo on their list of places to stay if and when a newly mooted caravan park opened on the site.

“If you are going to stay somewhere, you might as well stay somewhere different where there are animals right in front of you and you can probably hear lions roaring in the distance or a hyena going off,” Mr Clark said. “And we’d make up special little safari tours for them … there’s lots of plans in place for it (a caravan park), so it’s just a matter of bedding it down.”

The accommodation area will be on a site called Wild Africa, a previously unopened 550-hectare plot of land immediately east of the current Monarto park. Much of the plot is currently farmland, but it will be transformed into African-like savannahs which will house hundreds of animals and offer dusk and dawn tours aboard purpose-built open-air vehicles.

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3 Responses to Grey nomads set to camp with lions … in Australia!

  1. Sounds great, we stayed in bungalows inside Canberras National Zoo and had Lions sleeping outside our bedroom window, beautiful interaction and we surely would be up for Monarto’s new addition

  2. We camped in safari tents in Kenya with lions walking across the lawn at night and killing a buffalo. Nothing new,dubbo zoo has similar camping tents but fenced off.

  3. Love the idea,I couldn’t think of any thing better. People that can’t travel to those country’s, it would be brilliant. We can’t to come visit in our van.

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