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Butterfly World – Edinburgh

August 19, 2014

I have been to Butterfly world in Edinburgh a few times now, and two of those times have been very recently because our daughter is fascinated with butterflies (a-bye’s) ever since we raised the cabbage white caterpillars In June/July.

It’s basically a massive greenhouse containing all sorts of plants and critters (in addition to a zillion butterflies) with a large room in the back filled with reptiles, amphibians and other insects. There is also an enclosed area outside of the room where there are honey bee hives that you’re able to observe through glass.

They carry out scheduled handling and feeding displays throughout the day and it’s a fantastic, educational place for both children and adults.

Below I’ve included a series of photos I was able to capture from our last visit. 

Butterfly World is located just outside of a Dobbies garden centre and there is a lot of available parking space. The admission prices are reasonable and there is a little playground/picnic area outside as well with swings and a jungle gym. After you’ve paid you get a hand stamp which grants you admission throughout the day so you can come and go as you please.

The greenhouse part is intensely humid. If you are going in cold weather I would strongly recommend that you wear something you are able to take off easily or else you will melt. I wasn’t able to get as many photos as I would have liked to because my camera took a long time to warm up to the same temperature which meant the lens kept fogging over.


The newest additions to Butterfly world are these adorable tiny little Quail. There are several of them and they just scurry around the brush in groups. Sometimes they come out and run around on the path so you need to be mindful not to step on them.


At the back of the greenhouse there are bamboo rods covered in pupated caterpillars. The last time (when I thankfully had the camera) was the first time that I saw the wall of pupa sticks covered in butterflies. We accidentally timed it perfectly to see hundreds of butterflies breaking free all at once and it was pretty extraordinary.

I took quite a few photos as close as I dared to get to the butterflies but regretted not bringing a more cooperative lens for the task.









Besides the newly emerging butterflies there are also butterflies flying all around you all of the time. They’re not the easiest things to photograph fluttering all over the place but there are so many of them that even a total amateur such as myself can capture a few nice shots.








There are a few feeding stations like the one pictured below where you are guarenteed to capture some nice calm butterfly photos. Unfortunately my 2 year old was desperate to eat the fruit but we were able to restrain her.


The reptile room contains a number of snakes, Lizards, frogs, scorpions, spiders and insects. Most of them were nearly impossible to photograph so I didn’t try but Fluffy the python (below) came through pretty well and I managed a few others too.







There is a lot of water in the greenhouse as well as some tanks of fish. The water parts contain several turtles which you can see swimming around or sunning themselves under their heat lamps. There are also huge snails absolutely everywhere which I find pretty awesome because I love snails (except when they’re eating my garden).



So anyway… those are all of the decent photos that I managed this time and I only captured and represented a tiny fragment of all of the species of animals that live there.

I’m sure we’ll be back again soon.

One last thing I’d like to add is that their gift shop is one of the best I’ve ever seen from a tourist-y perspective, catering to a wide variety of budgets and interests.

All around, it’s a great place to visit and with Dobbies right next door you could really make a nice family afternoon out of it.


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