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Monkey Valley is in Vienne, a little north of Civray. It is one of the big attractions in Poitou Charentes. It is also fairly close to where we live so is a place I have visited several times. It is particularly good with young grandchildren who seem fascinated by the monkeys, many of which are very close to hand, though you are warned not to touch or feed them.

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There are plenty of information boards to tell you about the inmates and at certain times they are fed and the member of staff also gives quite a detailed commentary about the particular species they are feeding.

There is a lot of water about – ponds, lakes and rivers – and these are used to good effect to contain the monkeys in their respective areas. There are a few gates and walled areas but the general look of the place is an open park/garden area. There are plenty of flowering trees and bushes which all add to the tropical ambience. In the water are some enormous fish, frogs, ducks and moorhens.

There are two food outlets but in the summer the queues can be quite long. We prefer to take a picnic and there are plenty of tables dotted about in various areas where you can take your lunch. There are the obligatory childrens play areas but they are not too obtrusive and generally small people find the monkeys more interesting, so they don’t spend too much time on the slides and swings. There is also a small farm area with goats, cattle, sheep and geese where the small children can actually stroke the animals.

The cost is 16.50 euros for adults, 10 euros for children and under 5’s go free. You can also get a joint ticket for the Vallee des Singes and Le Parc de la Belle  for 19 euros per adult thereby saving 2.50 euros. I published a post on La Parc de la Belle a couple of months ago and it is also a good place to visit. Further info can be found at www.la-vallee-des-singes.fr or telephone 05 49 87 20 20.

And the big news is that the Bonobos have produced a baby….ahhh