Fashion Forensics visits Whipsnade Zoo and the UK’s first endangered freshwater fish Aquarium

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As a family day out, ZSL Whipsnade Zoo near Luton was always a firm favourite from my childhood. So when I heard they had opened a new aquarium conserving threatened and extinct-in-the-wild freshwater fish, I took my toddler along to check it out.

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The exhibit takes visitors on a round-the-world journey, through ten of the planet’s most extreme aquatic habitats, from a vibrant forest in Brazil, to an African puddle, the Aquarium brings families face-to-face with the most unique fish species in existence.

Fish that can jump out of the water to pluck fruit from trees or that live out of water for more than two months can be seen here. As well as fish, visitors will encounter the wildlife that scuttle alongside the water’s edge. Endangered Chinese crocodile lizards will roam around a Vietnamese-inspired stream habitat, while Mexican red-kneed tarantulas will most likely be spotted keeping cool around the Mexican desert spring. An inspired day out, which my toddler adored –definitely recommend it.

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The visit also prompted us to schedule a trip to London, to the ZSL London Zoo Summer Family Festival. Taking place over the last weekend of the summer holidays, from Friday 30 August to Sunday 1 September, it features fantastical storytelling sessions and a chance to get young brains back into gear, with a unique Zoo gameshow. Junior animal lovers can join the Teddy Bears’ Picnic too.

ZSL’s newly-opened Animal Adventure children’s zoo has also just been redesigned to truly capture the secret and surprising lives of animals – encountering meerkats, porcupines, mongoose, llamas and more. Kids can climb aboard the hot air balloon or slide down HMS Beagle and be transported to animal kingdoms around the world, before cooling down in the Splash Zone – conveniently situated next to the Peckish Parrot café, so mum and dad can take a break with a coffee. Little ones can get hands on with Zoo it Yourself where they will be transformed into zookeepers, gardeners, builders, and vets as part of the interactive experience – discovering exactly what goes into creating the perfect home for the Zoo’s furry, feathery and four-legged residents.

Save 10% on entry tickets by booking online now at www.zsl.org

Book flights to Luton with travel search site Cheapflights.co.uk.