Often hailed as one of Sidmouth’s most popular attractions, residents and visitors alike had been wondering when they would next get a chance to visit the town’s famous Donkey Sanctuary, which has been closed since March due to the ongoing Coronavirus pandemic. Well, you don’t need to wait any more, as they have announced that they are reopening from 28th September!

The main sanctuary, the popular onsite restaurant and the gift shop are all now open and are running daily from 9.30am – 4pm.

Speaking to local press about the reopening, a representative from the Donkey Sanctuary, said: “Like lots of other attractions, people can expect a different visitor experience when visiting the sanctuary. We have put a number of measures in place to keep visitors, our staff and of course, our donkeys as safe as possible.

“These new measures include one way loops around the site and fewer opportunities to interact with the resident donkeys. The safety of our visitors, staff and donkeys is paramount and every consideration has been made to make sure we can offer the highest level of safety for everyone.”

“We very much look forward to welcoming visitors back on site and would like to thank everyone for their continued support over the last few months.”

From 28th September, the site will open at 9.30am, with the Kitchen and Gift Shop opening up first, followed by the outdoor areas which will be open to the public from 10am. The site will be closing at 4pm.

A number of Covid-19 safety measures have been implemented so you can enjoy the sanctuary with peace of mind, capacity has been capped to allow for social distancing, there is no need to book in advance, but if you are planning to visit during peak times, like school holidays, we advise getting in touch with them. Other new rules include the wearing of face masks in queues and in the gift shop, new hand washing stations have been placed around the sanctuary and visitors are requested to follow the one way route. During the day, there will be regular, enhanced deep cleaning of the site to ensure everyone’s safety.

The Kitchen also has new safety procedures, with extended table distancing and new capacity limits, don’t worry though, the menu is still full of the freshest local produce, so those missing the tasty roasts and lunches need not worry!

You can find out more about the latest measures here and we look forward to being able to spend time with the donkeys once again!