One thing we have learned during our time here is that Germans love their nature and animal parks. There are tons and while they are generally similar as far as the attractions are concerned, each has its own "claim to fame." A lot of the time that claim to fame comes in the form of a castle.
Occasionally it comes in the form of a dinosaur or two. (See background of picture.)
These are pictures from a trip to Wildpark Potzberg we took during our first spring here. Located about 20 minutes northwest of Ramstein Air Base, Wildpark Potzberg is a smallish nature park right outside of an old castle. The castle is now a restaurant and hotel and makes a great place to host group events. We know of at least one class of American high school students which rented it out for their prom. (You can get directions through the park's website if you are nearby and interested in going. The address is located across the bottom of the page.)
There is a food and ice cream place located inside the park area but picnic lunches are allowed. (The food is a little pricey so packing some sandwiches is the better way to go, in my opinion.) The picnic area (which you can see in the background of the next picture) is located in the playground section.
The animals are not very exotic, as is the case with many of the German zoos, but the entire animal exhibit is very hands-on. You are allowed to pet and feed most of the animals.
Okay, nobody pet this next one, but we thought he was a little out of place with all the regular animals. We're suckers for the odd balls, don'tcha know?
They also have a birds of prey exhibit. Not hands on, but they have a few scheduled shows through the day that you can watch.
The park is located up in the hills so the views are spectacular.
It's definitely worth the trip if you are within an hour's drive. It makes for a nice afternoon out with friends.