Papillon was the first French word my little girl said, shortly followed by maman! Since Little Miss Cutie has a fondness for colourful butterflies, last week we decided to take advantage of the bank holiday to visit the Papiliorama in Kerzers (Canton Fribourg).
Just an hour and a half from Geneva, the Papiliorama Swiss Tropical Gardens are a great option for a family day-out: perfect on sunny days with their petting farm, shaded picnic areas and large outdoor playground but also on a rainy day, as most of the butterfly exhibits are indoors.
The Papiliorama is very popular with families and can get quite busy at the weekend, so try to get there as early as you can to avoid queues.
If your little travellers love trains then getting there by SBB is a great idea: the «Kerzers Papiliorama» train station is just 80 meters from the park’s entrance, which means you won’t have to worry about being stuck waiting for a free parking space and you’ll enjoy special RailAway-offers.
Once inside, take your time to visit the Papiliorama, Nocturama and Jungle Trek indoor domes. This is where the little buttons will be able to spot over 60 varieties of exotic butterflies, birds, reptiles and other animals, whilst surrounded by the lush tropical vegetation. You can also climb to the top of the canopy or on the panoramic bridge for a fantastic view-from-the-top.
The Papiliorama has an indoor café-buffet restaurant but queues can get really long, so why not prepare a packed lunch before you set off and make the most of the large picnic area next to the Jungle Café or the one outside ?
If the weather is on your side when you visit the Papiliorama Swiss Tropical Gardens, take a stroll in the Swiss Butterfly Garden and let your cheeky monkeys roam free in the Pongo Plaza play area or the petting zoo.
We were quite lucky last week and had enough time to enjoy the park’s outdoor attractions before it started raining again, but on a sunny day there is so much to do that you can easily spend hours here without even realising !
Children’s Days 2013
The Papiliorama organizes a series of fun activities for children aged 5 to 12 on the following Wednesdays, from 2pm to 5pm. They are included in the price of the entry ticket and require no advance booking, although it’s a good idea to reserve a place via firstname.lastname@example.org
The activities are run both in German and French:
- 29.05.2013 Früchte aus der Tropenwelt/Les fruits des tropiques
- 26.06.2013 Insekten: Plaggeister oder kleine Helfer?/Les insectes: vermines ou auxiliaires?
- 21.08.2013 Die Europäische Sumpfschildkröte/La Cistude européenne
- 18.09.2013 Tiere der Nacht/Les animaux de la nuit
- 30.10.2013 Helfen wir den Vögeln durch den Winter!/Aidons les oiseaux à passer l’hiver!
- 27.11.2013 Weihnachtsgewürze: woher kommen Kakao, Vanille, Zimt? Épices de Noël: d’où viennent le cacao, la vanille et la canelle?
They also offer birthday parties (in French and German only) from age 6, with 4 themes to choose from – click here for full details.
Papiliorama Swiss Tropical Gardens
Summer: Monday – Sunday: 09.00 h – 18.00 h (last admissions 5.15pm)
Winter (from 27.10.2013): Monday – Sunday: 10.00 h – 17.00 h (last admissions 4.15 pm)
Closed on the 25th of December and the 1st of January.
Adults: CHF 18
Children & teens aged 4-15: CHF 9
Children aged 0-3: FREE ENTRY
Annual pass: CHF 50.- for adults + CHF 25.- for children.