A thirty-minute drive north of Metz lies Amnéville, an easy-to-overlook town off the A31 motorway. But, just outside, in the Parc Amnéville-Les-Thermes, there is a gigantic tourist site with a conglomeration of attractions, cinemas, restaurants, spas and hotels you'd expect to see in North America rather than Europe. There are three large spas, Centre Thermal St Eloy (with a more therapeutic-medical orientation), Thermapolis (relaxation for all the family) and Villa Pompéi (offering massage and beauty treatments), which have been built over natural thermal springs; there are also sports arenas that include France’s only indoor ski slope, an 18-hole golf and mini-golf course, a “Fitnessium”, an ice-skating rink and an Olympic-size swimming pool.
But the main attraction is the zoo – one of the largest in France. You need a car to get there – and to move around the site. The zoo holds a large number of rare species; many of them are photogenic mammals, such as snow leopards, Siberian tigers, dwarf hippos and a big number of monkey species. In 2015, a new arena was opened to host a choreographed tiger show (1–3 times daily). Feeding of animals takes place several times a day; the wolf-pack feed is the biggest draw.