Things to consider when visiting Edinburgh Zoo

Hello wanderers! Are you planning a trip to Edinburgh Zoo and, like me, do you enjoy being well-prepared in advance? Then continue reading this blog post, as I will provide you with essential information you need to have a fantastic day out at the zoo.

General Information (How to get, opening hours, tickets)

Edinburgh Zoo is situated in the western part of the city and is set on Corstorphine Hill, providing a scenic and elevated setting for visitors to enjoy. Founded in 1913 by the visionary Thomas Gillespie, this institution is not only a place to marvel at incredible creatures, with over 2,500 animals calling it home, but also a registered charity dedicated to animal welfare and conservation efforts.

When it comes to getting to the zoo, there are a few options to consider. If you prefer the convenience of public transport, you can hop on bus number 26, which stops on Princess Street. Keep in mind to have the exact cash ready for your bus ticket, as  driver won’t be able to give you change on board. And for those who prefer to drive, please note that parking is limited and operates on a first-come, first-served basis. So, to avoid disappointment, it’s best to arrive early and secure a spot.

As for opening hours, Edinburgh Zoo opens its gates at 9:00 AM, allowing you to start your animal adventure bright and early. The zoo welcomes visitors until 6:00 PM, giving you plenty time to explore and enjoy all the wonderful exhibits. Just remember to keep an eye on the time and resist the temptation to hide in the bushes at closing time – the zookeepers have enough on their hands without having to search for escapees!

Animals you can’t miss when visiting the zoo

Penguins: Did you know that Edinburgh Zoo was the first zoo in the world to breed penguins? That’s right – these dapper little birds were waddling around this place long before it became a global trend. And there’s one penguin who deserves special recognition. Meet Brigadier Sir Nils Olav, the world’s only knighted penguin! This distinguished bird has been honored with a knighthood by the Norwegian King’s Guard, and he proudly struts around the zoo with his title. How awesome is that?

Pandas: Prepare to be pandarized by the adorable giant pandas residing at Edinburgh Zoo. Meet Tian Tian and Yang Guang, the dynamic duo that has captured the hearts of visitors from all over the world. These cuddly creatures are the only giant pandas in the UK, and they are a true delight to behold. But here’s the scoop: 2023 will be your last chance to see them at Edinburgh Zoo, as they will be moving on to a new adventure. So, don’t miss out on the opportunity to witness these gentle giants in person before they bid farewell to Scotland.

Giraffes: I absolutely adore these creatures (Who doesn’t?). Just look at their colors and patterns – so inspiring.  Don’t forget to bring your camera to capture some unforgettable moments with these magnificent creatures.

Big Cats: For all the feline enthusiasts! Edinburgh Zoo is home to majestic big cats that will leave you in awe. From the powerful tigers to the regal lions, these cute predators exude strength and beauty. Watch in amazement as they roam their enclosures with a graceful presence, showcasing their natural instincts. Be careful, they bite!

Tips for Visiting Edinburgh Zoo:

Start from the Top: Edinburgh Zoo is situated on a hill, so I recommend starting your visit from the top and making your way down. This way, you can save your energy and enjoy a leisurely descent as you explore the zoo.

Wear Comfortable Shoes: With so much to see and explore, be sure to wear comfortable shoes that will keep your feet happy throughout the day. The zoo involves walking on various terrains, so comfortable footwear is a must.

Allocate Time: To fully experience Edinburgh Zoo, allocate at least three hours for your visit. This will give you enough time to see the main attractions, observe the animals, and soak in the zoo’s unique atmosphere.

Check the Weather Forecast: Scottish weather can be unpredictable, so it’s always a good idea to check the weather forecast before your visit. Be prepared for changes in weather and bring appropriate clothing such as a waterproof jacket or sunscreen, depending on the forecast.

Visit on Weekdays: If possible, plan your trip to Edinburgh Zoo on a weekday to avoid the crowds. Weekdays tend to be less busy, allowing you to have a more relaxed and enjoyable experience.

Have Fun and Enjoy: Above all, remember to have fun and enjoy your time at Edinburgh Zoo! Take your time to observe the animals, participate in any interactive experiences available, and make lasting memories. It’s a fantastic place to connect with nature and create special moments.

Follow these tips, and you’ll be well-prepared for a delightful visit to Edinburgh Zoo. Enjoy your time exploring the incredible world of wildlife!

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