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Edinburgh Zoo is an 82 acre Zoological park located several miles west of the city.The land lies on the 'Cortorphine Hill' with extensive and stunning view of the city.Built in 1913 and owned by the Royal Zoological Society of Scotland it recieves over 600,000 visitors each year.Making Scotland's second most popular tourist attraction after Edinburgh Castle.
It was the first Zoo in the World to house and breed Penguins,it is also the only Zoo in Britain to house Koala's and Giant Panda's,the latter being part of a special project in conjuction with the Chinese Goverment who have loaned the Panda's to the Zoo as part of a ten year breeding program.Seperate tickets have to be pre-ordered to view the Panda's but the cost is included in the Zoo entrance price.
Prices:Adult:£15.50,Child:£11.00,Child under 3:free,Concession:£13.00.
Opening times:09.00-18.00-May till Sept,09.00-17.00-Oct & Mar,09.00-16.30-Nov till Feb.
- Family Travel
I went to the Zoo today. 13-6-12. First time since I was at primary school.
I’ve been to other zoos since - Berlin, Barcelona, Singapore - but not Edinburgh. Embarrassingly, since getting home I’ve found out my 18 y-o son has never been.
I went with my Rotary Club. Each year we run a day out for local kids from the special needs units in the schools. We’ve never “done” the zoo before (a pricey option) but this year the giant pandas arrived, so we pushed the boat out.
I didn’t see much - just the panda enclosure. Anyway, they get you lined up in groups every 30 minutes. You have to book your time slot in advance. Then they divide you in 3 and take you in at 10 minute intervals.
End result - 20 minutes in the enclosure and up to 20 minutes in a queue before that. Not sure if that works for me.
You get 10 minutes in the indoor viewing area, and 10 at the outdoor one. We had 20 young primary school children in our lot, and in the indoor enclosure they squealed and screamed so much we couldn’t hear the guide. Painful.
On the plus side, the male animal was 3 feet away in his indoor area, chewing on bamboo. Impressive to be so close. The female stayed outside while we were at the outdoor section, so we saw her well too as she moved around.
We were told they can sleep 16 hours per day, so our experience was positive.
Entry is £15.50 for adults and £11 for children. They have various family deals, such as £47.70 for 2 adults & 2 children. The car park was £4. A simple sandwich with a packet of crisps and a Coke set me back over £7.
- Family Travel
It had been very many years since i had last visited the Zoo, and as i had a late flight i decided to make a visit. It was a rather damp day, but it was enjoyable. Sadly I was a little disappointed about what I was able to see.
There were very few big cats and the penguin enclosure was closed for repairs. They have a new attraction, two Giant Pandas. However, they have a long queue of people with advance tickets to visit them.
There is a large Chimpanzee enclosure, and I have to say that some of them looked quite mature and I suspect they were there when i last visited which must be some 35 years ago.
Visit the Zoo
I'm not a great lover of zoos, but grand-daughter asked to be taken to Edinburgh zoo. In fact it turned out a most enjoyable afternoon. The weather was reasonable and the animals were relatively active- apart from the lions and rhinos who were sleeping in the sun.
What I appreciated was the environment- the bushes, trees and flowers. Although caged, the animals were in large areas wherever possible with trees, rocks and plants. There glass viewing spots for visitors to watch and photograph the animals ,as well as the fenced in areas.
Toilets and kiosks and cafes were readily available too.
The zoo opens at 9am and closes at 6pm. from April to October; 9am to 5pm in July and August
and 9 am to 4.30pm from November to March. There are talks daily [times in map leaflet].
The popular penguin parade is ar 2.15 pm , when penguins volunteer to walk around outside their enclosure. This is very popular especially with the children.
To get there take the 12, 26, 31, X48 or airport bus.
Entrance is quite expoensive:
Adults £15.50, children £11, Concession £13. However other options are available. For examplle we were 2 adults and 3 children and paid £51.
Renovations and changes are taking place at present.
We didn't manage to see everything as we went in the afternoon.
Warning- some of the paths are steep. A safari bus operates from 10am
- Family Travel
The Edinburgh Zoo
Please come and visit the Edinburgh zoo. It is a perfect way to spend a sunny Saturday and support the work they do to preserve animals (note that your ticket price includes a donation to the Royal Zoological Society of Scotland).
It is ideally located ten minutes for Haymarket (just hop on the Airport Express bus) and covers an entire hill.
You can discover such animals as lion, panthers, penguins, warthogs, deer, lemurs, sea lions,..Some species seem to find themselves at home as they are able to reproduce (baby lemurs are very cute). But between you and I, we pity some of the others, like the Polar Bear, who seemed to be literaly melting under an unusual sun.
The presence of a guide going around the park means you can follow and learn, or catch the odd presentation before the "close encounters", that will allow you to handle animals.
The souvenir shop is very well done and has lots of "good-cause" buys that look like quality, especially a box set to help you adopt an animal for a year and thus help the zoo preserve their habitat and well-being.
-Do not expect to see all the animals! Some of them are sleeping or hiding.
- Family Travel
Edinburgh Zoo is a fantastic place to visit with lots of different species of animals and you could spend the whole day here very easily. There are many different kinds of animals from Lions and Tigers, to Monkeys, apes and reptiles there really is something for everything. There is also the world famous penguin parade which was interesting on our trip especially when the keep announced into the microphone to keep small children close or to lift them up as one of the penguins was making mating noises (I am not kidding). The zoo also has a lemur walk way where you can walk through the lima enclosure. The zoo is fairly hilly but there is a train that runs to the top which can take wheelchair users. However some parts of the zoo are not suitable to wheelchair users although in the main the zoo has wheelchair access
- Family Travel
Edinburgh zoo, situated in the Corstorphine area of town, not too far out of the city centre and on the bus route. An excellent zoo, especially the penguine parade, and the feeding of the sea lions, kids love it
An 80 acre site on the slopes of Corstrophine Hill. It makes the most of the its location and there are great views from the highest point in the zoo. It has many endangered species but is most famous for its penguins - the largest number in captivity anywhere in the world - and their daily walk. See travelogue
The Penguin Parade at...
The Penguin Parade at Edinburgh Zoo
Every day (at 2pm, if I remember correctly, but better check when you get there) the penguins are let out of their enclosure for a little walk around the zoo. Those who wantto go will start gathering at the gate a while before that time, with the human spectators doing the same on the other side of the gate. Then the penguins march off and do a tour around the lawn for about half an hour, and they are absolutely hilarious. Should definitely not be missed! See my penguin-travelogue for some more pics.
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Edinburgh Travel Guide
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