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“Morning visit”

The Donkey Sanctuary
Ranked #2 of 29 things to do in Sidmouth
Certificate of Excellence
More attraction details
Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: More than 3 hours
Owner description: Set along the historic Jurassic Coast and nestled in the tranquil East Devon countryside in an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, our working farm is home to donkeys, mules and hinnies - large and small. Come and say hello to some of the hundreds of donkeys waiting to meet you, completely free of charge. Explore our exciting new Visitor Centre, Understanding Donkeys Zone and Dr Svendsen’s Hut, and discover just why donkeys are so special. Also enjoy our scenic farm trails, guided tours, outdoor play area, Nature Centre and Maze. Head to the new Gift Shop for donkey-design items for every pocket. When it’s time to take a break, relax in our new family-friendly restaurant, The Kitchen and enjoy freshly prepared dishes using local, ethically sourced produce alongside stunning views over the donkeys paddocks out to the sea. The Donkey Sanctuary was founded as a charity in 1969, by Dr Elisabeth Svendsen MBE. Open 365 days a year; entry and parking is free. Dogs on a lead are welcome.
Useful Information: Activities for young children, Activities for older children
Reviewed 30 March 2018

Although we are not fanatical about animals in general we were impressed by the facility which appears to be a very successful one. Over the years the founder and others have obviously worked very hard at rescuing the animals and assisting owners with veterinary services in poor parts of the world. History and other facts about donkeys were very well presented. One very refreshing feature is that there is no entry charge - very rare these days making it a great place for families. This also makes one more inclined to give a donation and buy souvenirs.

Thank Ge0n
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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"free entry"
in 178 reviews
"gift shop"
in 199 reviews
"lovely donkeys"
in 68 reviews
"building work"
in 58 reviews
"lovely place"
in 153 reviews
"free attraction"
in 37 reviews
"love donkeys"
in 49 reviews
"adopted donkey"
in 47 reviews
"all ages"
in 142 reviews
"hayloft restaurant"
in 33 reviews
"poitou donkeys"
in 28 reviews
"few hours"
in 93 reviews
"lovely visit"
in 32 reviews
"the barn"
in 33 reviews
"walk around"
in 39 reviews
"couple of hours"
in 65 reviews
"picnic area"
in 27 reviews
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292 - 296 of 2,804 reviews

Reviewed 30 March 2018 via mobile

Have been a few times now and it never fails to disappoint, great coffee and a good selection of meals, this week I had the burger and it was great

The new restaurant has plenty of space and great views over Sidmouth bay

The staff are always attentive and very pleasant

Thank JeremyK483
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 29 March 2018 via mobile

It’s amazing, free to enter. 100s of super donkeys. Some like a scratch behind their ears. Big wide paths between fields, but very muddy at the moment. Delicious food in the new restaurant. Fantastic work saving donkeys around the world. We had a lovely afternoon!!

Thank Elephant_Biscuits
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
The Donkey Sanc... S, Visitor Marketing Officer at The Donkey Sanctuary, responded to this reviewResponded 6 April 2018

Thank you for visiting and your lovely comments.

We are pleased that you enjoyed meeting our friendly donkeys and the delicious food in our new restaurant, The Kitchen.

Indeed some of our scenic walking trails are very muddy and we recommend visitors wear suitable footwear for these conditions, but the heart of the sanctuary remains accessible via concrete/tarmac pathways. We are currently looking at ways in which we can improve access around the sanctuary for all-weather conditions, without spoiling the natural charm.

Thanks again for your feedback and we hope to see you soon.

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 29 March 2018 via mobile

Loving the New Restaurant.
My twins, I and there Godfather enjoyed a lovely brunch. 1 Vegan , 1 vegetarian & 2 full English breakfast. All served quickly and lovely hot will definitely be back soon. Xx

Thank rob y
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 29 March 2018 via mobile

I love it here.
We have been 2 times this week for a wander around to see donkeys.
Had a sausage roll in the cafe as well which was yummy.
Donkeys are clearly loved there.
I fell in love with a donkey so when we come back next year, (hopefully!) I will be back to see him.
Beautiful place!

Thank AmandaJulia
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
The Donkey Sanc... S, Visitor Marketing Officer at The Donkey Sanctuary, responded to this reviewResponded 6 April 2018

Thank you for visiting the sanctuary - it is lovely to hear how much you enjoyed meeting our donkeys and we look forward to seeing you again next year.

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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