Colwyn Bay Mountain Zoo

Colwyn Bay Mountain Zoo

What gets you out of the house at the weekend? If is to spend time with the family? Alternatively, is walking or cycling a passion for you?

I like nothing more than getting out with my camera and snapping just about anything and everything. As well as being great exercise this great pastime gives me chance to get out of the office and concentrate on something other than work.

I love photographing wildlife and that takes to different zoos as well as getting out into the British countryside to find some wildlife in their natural habitat.

However, the first in our Photography Days Out series stars in a zoo: Colwyn Bay Mountain Zoo, Wales to be exact.

Colwyn Bay Mountain Zoo may have been opened over fifty years ago, but it was only this year that I walked through their gates for the first time.

Set in 37 acres, the zoo is home to a wide range of animals from the Sumatran Tiger, Snow Leopard, to the beautiful European Brown Bear.

Of course, there are also a range of birds and reptiles to also enjoy.

If you are getting into photography or coming back to it, I always find that zoos are a great place to start: you are guaranteed to see and be able to photograph something.

That is the one problem with setting out into the countryside; you can walk around or sit all day, and not see a damn thing.

However, the zoo also has its issues - I find the mesh around the enclosures to be a bit of a nightmare - as you can see from the below, it is incredibly difficult to get it right.

The longer the lens you have, the bigger the chance that you have of moving through the mesh and being able to focus on the animal on the other side.

Colwyn Bay Mountain Zoo makes use of all of the space, with some terrific sized enclosures for the animals housed there.

The Red Panda and Lemur enclosures are new, and the viewing platforms of both allows you to get incredibly close to the animals to take some great shots.

As well as photographing animals, I am also partial to shooting flowers: they really do make terrific images.

I am pleased to say that Colwyn Bay Mountain Zoo has some beautiful gardens with an array of flowers and plants to enjoy and photograph.

Iris, Poppy, Geraniums, as well as a host of ferns and grasses are just some of the highlights on the estate: but don't forget to check out the beautiful orchids in one of the hot houses.

I have been away from photography for a little while before picking up the camera earlier this summer to head to Colwyn Bay Mountain Zoo. If you are a little rusty like me, just keep snapping away, it is amazing just how quickly everything comes back to you.

You are not always going to get the perfect picture, but you just have to keep snapping away and you will get the gem.

Colwyn Bay Mountain Zoo is not just for the photography enthusiast, as it is a great place for a family day out - if you are a zoo lover, it is also worth a look. I personally cannot wait to see how the zoo continues to grow.

And for those of you that do go there with camera in hand, Colwyn Bay Mountain Zoo is just a hop and a skip away from the town of Colwyn Bay and Rhos-on-Sea, where there are some great coastline images to capture.

If you have a photography day out or walk that you have really liked share your experience with us.

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