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Mar Azul-Resort, next to Kempinski Hotel, Estepona

An overview of the development of the beach-side between "Cruisos Beach Bar" and "Blue Dolphin Bar", to include the "Laguna Village", "Kempinski Hotel", and "MarAzul-Resort", all near Estepona.

Selwo Animal Safari & Adventure Park, near Mar Azul Resort, Estepona
05 July 2008 @ 20:37

Despite the fact that the Selwo Animal Safari & Adventure Park is a couple of miles away from the Mar Azul Resort, I just have to include it in my overview of this coastline.  Why ?  Because it is MAGNIFICENT !

Considered to be the only theme park of it's kind in Europe, here you will find more than 2,000 animals from every continent living in semi-free conditions on the one million square metre site.  

Okay, I hear you say, just another zoo

Well it's not.

Note the bit in the title ""Adventure Park".  That's exactly what it is.  It's an adventure from the moment you climb up the steps of an off-road truck, which clambers up a rough track in low-ratio 4-wheel drive to a large outdoor enclosure.  Not surprisingly they don't let you in, because it's not your home, it's the Bengal Tiger's home, but you get CLOSE ENOUGH to these wonderful creatures.  Exiting briefly from the trucks you have the opportunity, but not for the feint-hearted, to leave the bright sunlight to enter the gloom of a cave full of vampire bats.  And then you're out into the sun again, and off up through steep-sided valleys to the peak of a mini-mountain where there's a cafe & restaurant with spectacular panoramic views. 

When suitably re-fortified your journey will continue through many separate and "geographically designated" areas, each being host to a wide variety of animals such as elephants, bison, antelopes, bears, tigers, giraffes and rhinoceroses, and with glorious views over the luxuriant and extensive lake-side gardens, Masai-style villages, and beyond to the wonderful Marbella coastline. 

After reaching another "mountain-peak", you have the choice of a lift back to base in a truck, but better still take the short-cut back on foot across several overhead rope walkways (with wild animals foraging below you ! ) and through the biggest aviary in Europe, holding over 1,000 birds of hundreds of different species in an utterly enchanting valley totally enclosed in netting ! 

See, I told you it's an adventure !

And there's more !  

There's a wide variety of additional activities including an exhibition of the flying and hunting skills of eagles and hawks, camel rides, archery, an adventure playground, trampolining, and a simulated rain-forest water-spray machine !  And the "Great Tyrolean Traverse" zip-wire over a crocodile-infested lake which, with a length of more than 100 metres is the longest in Europe. (Sorry, I made it up about the crocodiles)

Of-course there's got to be a word of warning when entrepidly exploring the unknown.  Wear appropriate footwear, bring drinks, and protect yourself from the sun. Also think carefully about whether it might become just too much effort for very young children, or for the parents that might have to end up carrying them !

Fortunately there are several restaurants and cafes around the site serving drinks, snacks and more substantial meals, but a further word of warning...you're not allowed to take your own food in !

Visiting hours at Selwo Aventura are from 10:00 AM to 8:00 PM during the summer season, and from 10:00 AM to 6:00 PM in winter. But best to check for the latest information about opening times and up-to-date prices by telephoning 902 19 04 82.   Or vist www.selwo.es but that's in Spanish !

Also, for accommodation in nearby MAR AZUL Resort, visit 
www.marazul-resort.com  That's in English !


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