We were gifted the Schleich Croco Jungle Research Station in return for coverage, because we adore Schleich toys. All of our opinions are honest.
Click here for our Toy Review Catalogue to read our reviews before you buy!
I never thought that Schleich toys were something that would interest my boys. They’re lifelike, detailed and beautiful creatures but I didn’t think that they would hold much play value, if I’m honest. I mean, a monkey is a monkey and a cow is a cow, you know?
Howeverrrr, in 2016 I was running a photography retreat in Herefordshire and we’d rented a HUGE house in the countryside to stay in and house all of the people coming to learn over the weekend. Gav was the chef for us, and my parents helped keep the boys occupied on the grounds of the house – which is where they discovered a big box of these plain old animals which turned out to be Schleich, I later found out. Early on the Saturday afternoon, I could hear pretend voices and giggles from the boys in the rock garden surrounded by bamboo – when I stalked on up to them [I’m amazing at this now] they were playing with the animals and it was ADORABLE. And when I say that, I actually mean scoop up all the feelings and hug yourself whilst squealing cute. It was no surprise that when we came to leave, they were sad to put them back and wanted Mommy to find out where to get them.
Fast forward a few years and they have had SO much fun with Schleich animals and playsets. For his birthday, Lyoto received a gorgeous brown bear [if you’re a long time reader you know Lyoto is obsessed with bears – #BeTheBear] and he was over the moon when the postman delivered the BIGGEST box ever, containing the Schleich Croco Jungle Research Station.
It is HUGE. HUMONGOUS. MASSIVE. It’s like a suitcase I take to BlogOn.
The set up of the playset took around 20 minutes in total. There were a few little stickers, a very comprehensive instruction book and a bit of fiddling when it came to fixing the roof of the station together, but it was simple enough for me to set up – which says A LOT if you know me. When there are instructions, my brain runs and hides.
So, the Croco Jungle Research Station is part of the Schleich Wildlife collection, and is themed in the jungle. It’s quite honestly my ideal playset. Crocs, a gorgeous wooden treetop station, and campfire and a cup of tea. I’d live there if I was a mini Schleich person.
In the box is…quite a bit, including:
- Instruction Booklet
- Sticker Sheet
- The Croco Skull [in pieces]
- The Jungle Research Building [in pieces]
- Black Panther
- Baby Elephant
- Schleich Character [Ours is Steve – no prizes for knowing why]
- 4 x Silver/Grey Cage Pieces
- 6 x Cream Enclosure Panels with Divider
- Folding Chair
- Mobile Phone and Binoculars with little strap
- 2 Campsite Cups, 2 Plates and Kettle
- Axe, Bushcraft Knife, Spade
- Aluminium Box [keeping food safe from bears]
- 2 x Tree Log Seats
- Campfire Tripod with Hook
- Treasure Map and Treasure Chest with Gold
- 2 x Torches
- Crystal Skull [which makes us feel like this is something to do with Indiana Jones’ worst film ever]
The boys have been happy as clams with the Schleich Croco Jungle Research Station. Because it’s just wildlife, they can put their own stamp on it, create their own adventures without having to replicate the mannerisms of characters they’ve seen on TV, and because it’s so beautifully made and resilient, we can take it anywhere, especially outdoors where they’d prefer to be but can’t normally take toys for fear of getting them wet or muddy. These are toys for the rough spots, the touch spots and the very best places for play.
The big showpiece of the set is the Croco cave below. It has a jaw which not only can be accessed through the back and the front, but also propped open with a tree trunk, and completely taken off too! It’s pretty jawsome. Sorry. It’s got a TRAPDOOR on the top where the little viewing platform is which gives it extra drama.
The Croco Cave is also made of something which isn’t brittle and has quite a bit of give to it and so I’ve no fear of puncturing my leg on a giant Croc tooth when I inevitably fall over it in their room.
Lyoto wanted to show his own set up of play for a new adventure. It’s just above and called bear-destruction. We all love that it’s a playset which can be arranged in different ways for different games. Also, smaller pieces are easier for storage, and can spread the play across a wider base which is brilliant when you have more than one child playing.
The Schleich Croco Jungle Research Station retails at around £100 – and it’s not only beautifully designed but also durable, tactile and give hours and hours of imaginative and creative play outdoors and inside too. It’s compatible with every other Schleich toy we have and so it’s a great choice for birthdays because friends and families can buy add on animals without breaking the bank. We’ve been playing with Schleich now for a few years and love their products – we wholeheartedly recommend them for anyone wanting to be a bit more free with their play!