The 7 most popular zoos in Poland
Poland has so many great zoos that it’s really hard to pick the best ones! Like all over the world, zoos are one of the most popular family-friendly attractions in Poland, a great day out for the whole family. Prepare yourself for a journey to the fantastic animal world!
Wrocław Zoo and Africarium
The Wrocław Zoo is not only the oldest zoo located in Poland (established in 1865), but it also includes Africarium – the only oceanarium in the world dedicated to Africa’s water environment and the top tourist attraction in Poland. Africarium is located within the area of Wrocław Zoo and you do NOT need to buy any separate entrance tickets to Africarium. The opening hours of Africarium are the same as the whole Wrocław Zoo.
It’s recommended to buy tickets online.
The Zoo was opened in the Praga district of Warsaw, in the place where it is today, in 1927. The garden was 12 ha, now it extends over an area of 40 ha. The Warsaw Zoo is a place with a lot of history. Between 1940 and 1944 Jan Żabiński (director of the Warsaw zoo) and his wife Antonina hid around 300 Jews in the zoo’s enclosures and in their own villa. You can read more about this history in the non-fiction book “The Zookeeper’s Wife” by Diane Ackerman or watch “The Zookeeper’s Wife” movie.
The Warsaw Zoo is open every day, including all public holidays. To avoid crowds the best option is to visit if possible on a weekday.
The Zoo recommends buying tickets online.
The Zoo in Łódź and its new part – the Orientarium
For several years, the Łódź Zoo has been developing a huge new project – Orientarium. The Orientarium is dedicated to the fauna and flora of Southeast Asia. The author of the Orientarium project in Łódź is the same studio that designed the Africarium in Wrocław (our tips on visiting the Zoo and Africarium in Wrocław).
The main attraction of the Orientarium is the underwater tunnel where visitors can observe the coral reef and aquarium for sharks and rays. The tunnel is 26 m long and 2.4 m high. The average depth of the reservoir is 6 m, and at the deepest point – 8 m. The space above the acrylic tunnel was filled with 2.5 million liters of water.
Plants, shrubs, ivy and grasses planted in the new part of the Zoo come, among others, from Laos, India, Australia, Japan, and the Philippines. In addition to gardens, 7 ocean reservoirs and 3 freshwater reservoirs, the Orientarium has enclosures for, among others, Indian elephants, panthers, Malay bears, gibbons and aviaries for hornbills and Balinese starlings.
The new part – Orientarium – is open to visitors from April 2022.
In the Gdańsk Zoo (located in the Oliwa district), animals from all continents live in an area of 125 hectares. Among them are those whose populations in the wild no longer exist. It is the largest zoo in Poland in terms of area!
The Gdańsk Zoo is open every day, including all public holidays.
There are over 1,400 animals in the Krakow Zoo, representing 270 species. Endangered animals constitute a large group (over 100 species). The Zoo is located in Wolski Forest (Las Wolski) – a beautiful forest park, unique in large cities, with numerous, marked walking and cycling routes.
It’s recommended to buy tickets online.
Do you know the city where there are 2 zoos? In Poland it’s Poznań!
The New Zoo (founded in 1974) is like a huge forest, located in a hilly forest area with six large ponds. There is a free trackless train which makes it easy to explore the Zoo with children and strollers (the train has 5 stops).
The Old Zoo is smaller than the New Zoo which can be nice, especially with smaller children – it’s more like a city park with animals. The main advantage of the Old Zoo is that it’s free – so no need to worry about long lines, no need to plan your visit.
Katowice area – the Silesian Zoological Garden in Chorzów
This is the third-largest zoo in Poland. In an area of nearly 50 ha, in the heart of Upper Silesia (Górny Śląsk), you can observe over 300 species of animals from all over the world. The zoo also hosts the Dinosaur Rock Valley (Skalna Kotlina Dinozaurów) – the first outdoor exhibition of this type in Europe, created in 1971.
You can buy tickets online.
Photo sources: Kids in the City, Wrocław Zoo, Warsaw Zoo, Łódź Zoo, Gdańsk Zoo, Poznań Zoo, Kraków Zoo, Chorzów Zoo
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