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The Big Cat Sanctuary

Features Animals
Marley Farm Headcorn Road, Smarden TN27 8PJ, England
+44 1233 771915
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Review Highlights
Cheetah experience

This was a truly brilliant day. It was booked for my husband’s Big 60 but there was no way that the... read more

Reviewed today
philm49s
,
Bramley, United Kingdom
via mobile
Open days

Well what can I say! As a lover of cats big and small a trip to the sanctuary was a must. The day... read more

Reviewed 2 days ago
3331melanie
via mobile
Read all 667 reviews
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The Big Cat Sanctuary The Big Cat Sanctuary is a conservation charity, home to over 50 big and small cats across 16 different species. We are proud to have the most diverse collection in the UK, from the largest, to the smallest, to the most endangered in the world, hidden away in the Kent countryside. We are a centre of excellence whose primary objective is the breeding of some of the most endangered species on the planet as well as offering sanctuary to retired and homeless cats. The breeding centre is proud to be part of the EEP (European Endangered Species Breeding Programme). This is a body that regulates the captive breeding of endangered cats by making recommendations for breeding to produce a strong, healthy and diverse gene-pool within the captive population to ultimately be reintroduced safely into their natural habitat to mix with their counterparts in the wild. Breeding success so far includes the Amur leopard programme which is the world’s most endangered big cat, estimated between 70-80 remaining in the wild globally, also to the Sumatran tigers, Amur tigers and Pallas cats. Big Cat Sanctuary operates by way of personal big cat experiences including big cat tours, individual and group photography days, overnight big cat safari nights and adoptions. All of which need to be pre-booked in advance of a visit. The centre takes pride in delivering fully immersive, personal and amazing experiences that will leave any big cat lover with memories to treasure forever.
  • Excellent93%
  • Very good4%
  • Average1%
  • Poor1%
  • Terrible1%
Travellers talk about
“open days” (89 reviews)
“cat lovers” (20 reviews)
LOCATION
Marley Farm Headcorn Road, Smarden TN27 8PJ, England
CONTACT
Website
+44 1233 771915
Write a ReviewReviews (667)
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All reviews
"open days"
in 89 reviews
"photography workshop"
in 21 reviews
"cat lovers"
in 20 reviews
"hand feeding"
in 25 reviews
"general public"
in 21 reviews
"amazing experience"
in 28 reviews
"camera settings"
in 10 reviews
"these beautiful creatures"
in 12 reviews
"photographic experience"
in 7 reviews
"once in a lifetime"
in 10 reviews
"overnight stay"
in 13 reviews
"resident photographer"
in 8 reviews
"wild cats"
in 16 reviews
"amazing photos"
in 7 reviews
"afternoon tea"
in 24 reviews
"snow leopard"
in 14 reviews
"birthday present"
in 19 reviews
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1 - 10 of 665 reviews

Reviewed today via mobile

This was a truly brilliant day. It was booked for my husband’s Big 60 but there was no way that the rest of the family was going to be left out! The opportunity to be in the enclosures with a number of beautiful cheetahs was...More

Thank philm49s
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 2 days ago via mobile

Well what can I say! As a lover of cats big and small a trip to the sanctuary was a must. The day was phenomenal and really well organised! I had the privilege of seeing many of the cats despite the blistering heat. I gladly...More

Thank 3331melanie
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 days ago

I was a big fan of Tigers in the House so when I heard about the new programme about Maya and Willow I knew I wanted to try and visit the Sanctuary. We booked an overnight lodge experience for my birthday and it didn't disappoint....More

Thank oldbag93
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
See more reviews
Reviewed 4 days ago via mobile

I was on a organised coach trip and we had two brilliant guides. So knowledgeable and their love for the cats came through clearly. Unfortunately it was pouring all day so it was difficult to photograph but we could enjoy looking at all the cats...More

Thank Sue K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 5 days ago via mobile

Bought the ranger day for my partner’s birthday and as others have said, it’s not cheap. If you can stretch to it though, it’s so worth it. We had an amazing day with just us two and Ricky, one of the keepers. Ricky has a...More

Thank Andrea F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 5 days ago via mobile

Open weekend to members of the public. Great day out and lots of great memories. Has cost me more as now lodge booked for next year.

Thank Malcolm C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 1 week ago via mobile

This was amazing! One of the best things I have ever done. I was sad that my 11 year old son could not do the feeding but I’ve promised up take him back as soon as he is old enough. The sanctuary is amazing, the...More

Thank shellyquinton
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 1 week ago

After seeing the Big Cat Sanctuary documentary we had to see Maya and Willow for ourselves, both were adorable, together with all the other wonderful cats. The Open Day was very well organised and reasonably priced for food and refreshments, there were also stalls, face...More

Thank Andrea S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 1 week ago

Seeing the beautiful Maya, and the conservation work is amazing . It is a shame however,that they have to be caged.

Thank vanessa c
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 1 week ago via mobile

Despite the extreme heat we absolutely loved our day here. Watching the feeds and listening to the talks we learnt so much and it's really great to hear the progress being made. We will definitely look to come back next year or book an experience.

Thank grace w
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Ask a question
Questions & Answers
Adam D
26 July 2018|
Answer
Response from Fiona T | Reviewed this property |
There is a lodge for 4, contact the big cat sanctuary to book it. It would be a brilliant birthday experience. I was lucky enough to get the lodge experience for my birthday. It is a fantastic gift.
0
Votes
Adam D
26 July 2018|
Answer
Response from angelbuff6 | Reviewed this property |
The open days are 26th till the 29th July, all the tickets get sold way in advance, open days are once a year, become an adopter or member then you get to go to special days
0
Votes
Emma N
24 July 2018|
AnswerShow all 6 answers
Response from TaniaVanDV | Reviewed this property |
Hi, there is a small cafe on site, but we didn’t use, so not aware of what they sell, they did have a coffee machine. the village on Headcorn is 5 mins away, pretty with pubs & cafes. Our big cat experience, with lovely... More
1
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