When you think of Africa, visions of the world's most exotic animals are one of the first images to float into your mind's eye, made all the more exotic because of their sheer distance from everyone here in Ireland... but now it seems that Africa has just come to us. In a manner of speaking.
A safari-themed experience has just landed in Dublin, located in Pembroke Square (across from Wagamamas) at Dundrum Town Centre, featuring life-sized models of animals in order to help real animals.
Having just opened to the public, Dundrum Summer Safari aims to raise awareness and funds for the endangered rhino. Due to persistent poaching and habitat loss, rhino numbers have dropped dramatically in recent years and the species is at serious risk. For every picture shared by visitors to the event on social media using #DundrumSafari, Dundrum Town Centre will donate €1 on your behalf to Save The Rhino International, an organisation dedicated to protecting these creatures in the wild across Africa and Asia.
Dundrum Town Centre will donate up to €5,000 to this worthy cause, so help make that happen!
And in order to encourage the good people of Dublin to start sharing this experience online, the folks at Dundrum have endeavoured to make the whole thing as photogenic as possible...
Wander through the experience to spot the 'Big Five': the lion, the elephant, the leopard, the Cape buffalo and the rhino.
To add more realism to proceedings you can jump into the Safari Jeep, pop on a VR headset, and find yourself teleported to the African savannah for an animal encounter.
Another massive feature of the Dundrum Summer Safari, the centrepiece, has to be the hot air balloon, which visitors can climb into and take a snap in.
All that adventuring will put a fierce hunger and thirst on a person, so be sure to finish off your visit at the Sundowners Lodge for some much needed refreshments.
Additional events and activities are planned each weekend too, so you can also expect to find the likes of face painting, arts and crafts, balloon artists, African dance and drumming classes. Whether you're having a family day, hanging out with friends or on a date, this promises to be an experience to remember.
Dundrum Summer Safari will run until September in Pembroke Square at Dundrum Town Centre, Sandyford Road, Dundrum, Dublin 16.