This place is amazing. Trentham Monkey Forest is home to 140 free ranging Barbary macaques living in 60 acres of ancient Staffordshire woodland. And you can walk amongst them! It’s like a monkey experience day in itself, and that’s before you buy one of their experience days.
There really is nowhere else like it in the UK, and we only wish it was closer to Experiencey HQ so we could see the monkeys more often.
The park only has one type of monkey and that’s the Barbary macaque. But because there are no other species of monkeys to disagree with each other, the monkeys are allowed to roam wherever they want in the forest. It’s sort of like a huge monkey enclosure in a zoo, but you’re allowed inside.
At the time of writing, there’s only one experience day available, but it’s a good one.
Buy ‘Breakfast with the monkeys’ and you’ll get access to the park before it opens to the public at 9am. You’ll see behind the scenes and help to prepare the monkeys’ food, and feed two separate groups of monkeys. Remember, these macaques are running free and if you’ve got the food, you’ll be their best friend.
There’s a maximum of two people on each experience so you won’t be surrounded by random monkey-lovers, and under 16s need to be accompanied by an adult for an extra cost. Entry to the park is included and once the experience finishes you’re welcome to wander around the park for the rest of the day.
What are Barbary macaques?
They’re the same sort of monkeys that live in Gibraltar, but these ones don’t jump into your bag and steal your crisps. They’re not dangerous, just inquisitive, and live in big family groups. Interestingly they are also known as Barbary apes, despite not being apes. They’re monkeys, that’s why the park is called ‘monkey forest’ and not ‘ape forest’!
This place is clearly the best thing in Stoke, and if you know someone who loves monkeys we couldn’t recommend the monkey experience more highly.