Port Lympne is closed for January but Howletts will stay open on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays

A Kent wildlife park is to only open three days a week this month whilst its sister park will remain closed this January.

Bosses at Port Lympne says "with a heavy heart" they are having to temporarily close the wildlife park near Hythe until January 31.

Howletts and Port Lympne have been forced to alter opening hours for January
Howletts and Port Lympne have been forced to alter opening hours for January

Its other park, Howletts, near Canterbury, will remain open to visitors looking to get outside - but only on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays throughout the month.

Both parks, which are among the most popular visitor attractions in the county, had been forced to close during the second national lockdown and have struggled to attract visitors amid the current rise in cases.

Although the park did not reveal the reasons behind the closure decision, it has previously stated that with visitor numbers dwindling due to the pandemic and a lack of government support, running the parks was "not sustainable".

2020 proved a difficult year for animal parks as they struggled financially with running costs and lack of visitors
2020 proved a difficult year for animal parks as they struggled financially with running costs and lack of visitors

It costs more than £300,000 a week to operate the two sites, run by the Aspinall Foundation.

In a statement, the park said: "It is with a heavy heart that we will be closing Port Lympne Hotel & Reserve to the public from January 4 until January 31. Our sister park, Howletts Wild Animal Park, remains open on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays only throughout January.

"With 90 acres to explore and three adorable baby elephants to see, Howletts is ideal for a safe, socially distanced day out where you can enjoy some fresh air and see our amazing animals."

Howletts will remain open on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays this January
Howletts will remain open on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays this January

Any family with valid Port Lympne membership will have access to Howletts during the closure.

To book your tickets for a visit to Howletts please click here.

For more suggestions of things to keep the family occupied this month visit www.mykentfamily.co.uk

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© KM Group Saturday, Jan 16 2021