Come to Northumberland and see the rare and beautiful Chillingham Wild Cattle roaming through their natural habitat. The Chillingham Wild Cattle can be found at Chillingham Park near Alnwick in the north of the county and are truly unique. They are natural clones and are thought to be rarer than the giant panda. Not only are the cattle genetically identical, each one has received identical genes from its sire and its dam - unique among wild living animals. You can see them up close as they roam through the 330 acres of Chillingham Park. The park has spectacular views to the Cheviot Hills and you may also see fallow and roe deer, red squirrels and a fine variety of bird life.
The cattle can breed at any time and are true survivors. It is thought they have been living at the park for more than 700 years and the fierce winter of 1947 almost wiped them out entirely reducing the herd to 13. Today there are now over 100 animals - looked after by a specially formed association and the thriving herd has become one of the county's best loved attractions. This unique herd of wild cattle, in the park at Chillingham, are the sole survivors of herds that once roamed the forests of Britain. They are truly wild and potentially dangerous, so must be approached with care.
Visitors are able to see the cattle only when accompanied by the warden, who will ensure their safety, take them as close as possible and talk about the cattle and the herd's history. This is the total world population. They can only be seen at Chillingham.
Read the blog of Whylde, the latest addition to the Chillingham Wild Cattle herd
|Type||Entry for||Guide price|
(Child (4-16 years old))
(Family (2 adults + up to 3 children))
Joint tickets for the Wild Cattle and Chillingham Castle are available.
Car parking available
A hidden gem.
Alec C, Doncaster, United Kingdom
Don't go to see the wild cattle if you are looking for a petting zoo experience or a chance to get up close and personal with animals. What you get from Chillingham is the chance to see herds of cattle that have been left to evolve and develop without human intervention. The rangers are on hand to ensure your safety and provide quality information regarding how, when and why. Parking can be tight and then you have to walk a short distance across fields to get to the entrance so sturdy boots are a must! We visited in summer and the weather was very good however in the rain I imagine the experience is not as enjoyable.
Tracy T, Sleaford, United Kingdom
We very nearly didn't stick around to find out what was on offer, as the signage from the car park wasn't bold enough and we didn't realise that the trek across the field to the start of the tour took a good 10-15 minutes so we just missed the start of one the tours and made our way back up the hill again to the car park. However, I'm so pleased that we decided to wait and go back again as to be so close to these magnificent animals was a real thrill and a real treat. The young lady who guided us round was very knowledgeable, the waiting area had some really interesting facts about the animals but as there are no toilets in the car park I really feel that toilet facilities do need to be provided here, it didn't spoil our visit but just something simple is most definitely required. The little gift shop was quaint and the range of gifts while small were quite sufficient. All in all a great experience and something completely different.
Stuart N, Newcastle upon Tyne, United Kingdom
We had heard about this and got a good deal as it's linked to Chillingham castle. It's quite a drive up to the car park followed by a 10 minute walk to the meeting point. You are guided by an experienced ranger and you get a chance to see the cows in their habitat. Sadly you can't get too close for safety reasons, but there are binoculars available. They are unique and its fascinating learning about their history.
annie2mac, London, United Kingdom
After trekking across two fields [avoiding the sheep poo!] , we did come to the field where the cattle were grazing, but they were not very close to get a good look at them, such is the luck of the draw. However there was a chronological history on the wall of their breeding which gave an insight to their long history.
Brilliant experience with an excellent warden as guide (and protector).
This was a thoroughly enjoyable experience. Arrived at the top car park at 09.50 and thought I might be late as it is a walk through fields to the starting point only to find I was the only visitor for the 10am tour. Met by Ellie the warden who turned out to be a very knowlegeable 20 something year old young lady with a wealth of experience. It was great to see these unique cattle in a natural environment which hasn't been changed for centuries. Saw a number of bulls, cows and calves. Sadly I had managed to forget to replace my camera battery which I had on charge all night so didn't manage to get any pictures. Plan to return to remedy that error next year. Remember to wear stout shoes and be ready for some hiking. Happy to pay the small fee to contibute to the upkeep of this unique herd.