I have been lucky enough to see many different animals on my travels around the world – both wild animals, and those living in zoos and parks. One species that I still needed to tick off my list was the panda. When i found out that Edinburgh Zoo is the home of two pandas, I of course ordered the tickets right away!
It might be a good idea to buy tickets prior to your visit at the Zoo’s webpage. First of all, you can save a few peanuts compared to buying the tickets at the Zoo. Second of all, you might not be able to go see the pandas, if you do not order your tickets to do so beforehand. They are extremely popular, and to avoid too much hustle and bustle around them, you have to book a time to see them. This will not cost you extra, but it will make it a better experience for both the pandas and the visitors.
Nice Zoo in a green setting
Edinburgh Zoo is located away from the city center, but it only takes a 20-minutes bus drive to come out here. We arrived at 10 am, and after receiving a map at the entrance, we started to explore all the things, the Zoo has to offer.
Edinburgh Zoo is a very green zoo. You will find lots of trees and bushes, and several places you will find a great view of the surrounding area. Great views tend to be mean hills and steep rises – and that is also the case here! I was glad I brought my good walking shoes…
I was a bit surprised not to see neither elephants or giraffes. That is animals that I almost expect to see when visiting a zoo, cause they are always there. On the other hand, they had some not-so-usual animals, that I haven’t seen in many other zoos. Koalas, a cassowary (extremely big Australian bird), and a rock hyrax (that looks like a mix of a cat and a guinea pig, but is actually closely related to the elephant!) among others.
The great attractions at Edinburgh Zoo
The biggest crowd puller in the Zoo is of cause the Pandas. Edinburgh Zoo has two pandas: Tian Tian (female) and Yang Guang (male). We only had the pleasure to see the male, but we also got to see him for a loooong time. He took a serious nap while we were there – a nap so long that the zookeepers hadn’t been able to clean his enclosure, as they usually would have done. He didn’t seem to mind, he just continued to snooze…
Another big attraction at the Zoo is their penguins. Everyday at 2.15 pm, the penguin enclosure is opened, so the penguins can go for a walk around the Zoo among the visitors with their keepers. Unfortunately, we did not get to see that, but the large penguin enclosure was still impressive, and it was fun to see how the penguins collects rocks to build their nests.
Edinburgh Zoo is a wonderful place, where you can easily use a couple of hours watching the animals and get to know more about them – also if you are not bringing young children. It is a lovely Zoo with beautiful surroundings. A good tip is to remember to wear comfortable shoes. Your feet will be at work on the many steep hills!
Visited in June 2016
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