Located in Gweek, Cornwall, not far from Helston; the Seal Sanctuary, part of the Sea Life Trust charity; is a great day out for all the family. With nature walks, farm animals, penguins sea lions and of course seals. Recently the Secret Creek, home to three totally cute beavers. Located in a pretty coastal valley, and open year round, there is plenty to see on repeat visits.
We have visited at different times of year before; and can definitely attest to there being lots to see, at different times of year rain or shine.
The Seal Sanctuary
The seal sanctuary is precisely what it says, a sanctuary. Throughout the year; usually between March and September; seals are rescued from around the Cornish coast. They are brought to the sanctuary and rehabilitated, before being released back into the wild where they belong. Of course sometimes this is not possible; due to health issues, and these seals are homed permanently at the sanctuary, under the watchful eye of marine experts.
When visiting you get a ticket that lasts the whole year; so you can visit as many times as you like! There is ample parking, though it’s very sloped so reminders to leave your car in gear are highly visible. The sanctuary is suitable for those with mobility issues; though there is a lot of walking and some areas are not as traversable. There is also a “bus” that runs from the entrance and back to save some of the walking.
When you arrive at the Seal Sanctuary; there are two paths you can follow; down to the sea life enclosures, or up towards the paddock animals, past the snack bar; here you will also find the hospital, which offers a unique look at how the recued Seals are cared for. On the top path you can see goats; ponies and sometimes sheep on the fields; as well as take in the pond and nature areas. There is also a woodland nature walk.
The Seals at the Sanctuary
There are several pools at the sanctuary, where you will spot some seals; the common seals, the nursing and convalescence pools, and the male and female grey seals, as well as this you can head up to see the sea lions, in their own enclosure.
Further along from the seals, (by the bus stop); you will find Penguin Beach, as well as a café, and another snack bar; perfect for getting some good hot food, or a pasty; or cold drinks and an ice cream! Whatever takes your fancy!
It’s no secret we love sanctuaries, check out our visit to Screech Owl Sanctuary in this post.
Secret Creek and Nature Walks
Following the path along the river; you will get to the Secret Creek; home to sisters Twiggy and Barbara and baby Norbert. Their presence enabling further research as to the impact of beavers on the environment.
Sadly the beavers were all inside when we visited, but that’s just an excuse to visit again right?!
We finished up the day wit another wander around, and of course an ice cream! Because it was boiling!
If this isn’t enough, you can continue to explore the nature walk; complete with interactive boards to keep everyone amused; from things you might spot walking around, to seeing how your measure up against some of the bird life!
Seal Sanctuary Activities and Talks
There are many activities and talks throughout the day; whether you want to learn more about the penguins, beavers, sea lions or the seals; and if you’re lucky you might be there for feeding time and more! Staff are friendly and knowledgeable and always willing to answer your questions!
Once you are done for the day; you can of course head to the gift shop to buy yourself a souvenir from your day out. Safe in the knowledge that all the money you spend; will go towards keeping the seals and other animals safe; fed and enabling more rescues and health care for the future. You can find out more, including how you can do more to help, on the website here.
If you would like to see us visit anywhere else, we’d love to hear your recommendations! Leave a comment below or of course you can find me on most social media! If you enjoyed this post please consider sharing, and subscribing!