If you want to discover a wonderful zoo during your trip to New York, go to the Bronx Zoo.
Being simply the largest zoo in the United States, you will discover many magnificent species like tigers, gorillas, polar bears … in suitable, very natural environments.
It can not be explored in only 1 hour like the Central Park Zoo, but it’s really worth.
Here is a description of this zoo after visiting it in October 2014.
What is the history of the Bronx Zoo?
This zoo was opened in 1889 with 843 animals and was aimed to advance zoological studies, protect wildlife, and educate visitors.
Since the late 19th century, it has grown and now hosts 650 species and more than 6,000 animals on 170 acres in the Bronx.
The Bronx Zoo was one of the first zoos in North America to place animals in natural settings rather than in cages, which allowed them to mix species, while putting them in an environment similar to the one they came from. However, there are separations to avoid predators and potential prey that will coexist, such as ditches or fences. However, for aesthetic reasons, these boundaries are not always visible.
What can you see at the zoo?
Know that the Bronx Zoo is not only the largest in the USA and one of the largest in the world, but also the quality of the zoo makes it one of the best!!!
Pens are really high quality and adapted to the animals and allows you most of the time to have a nice view of the animals.
In the picture below you can see that you can admire tigers very close and with a wonderful view.
When you get to the enclosure, you have all the time sheets on the animals and sometimes small exhibitions to help learn and small games for children.
Know that the 2 zones called Jungle World (with gibbons, tapirs, otters …) and Congo Gorilla Forest (with gorillas) are not free ($ 5 each) if you buy a general admission ticket (I will talk about it- below in the zoo costs)
Then inside the zoo, there are both attractions that are available but also small shows: a 4D cinema: “4-D Theater,” a carousel of insects, “Zucker Bug Carousel,” the “Camel Rides” (possibility to ride a camel and take a stroll), small show when the penguins and sea lions are fed: “Penguin Feeding” & “Sea Lion Feeding”
Which parts of the zoo you cannot miss?
If you can not visit all parts of the zoo, here are the four that should absolutely not be missed:
– Space “Tiger Mountain”
With the windows, they stand a few inches from you. It is fabulous !!!
– The Brown Bear area:
– Space Congo Gorilla Forrest:
Here you have the gorillas cuddled with their young. It’s beautiful to see and super troubling at times because as you can see in these pictures that a gorilla was watching me take the picture, I felt that he understood everything!
Then there is of course the lions, giraffes and monkeys.
And then according to your tastes, there are also bison, reptiles, birds …
The only regret that I have is not being able to see the Wild Asia Monorail.
This is a small train that takes you on a walk in the middle of nature where there are many animals including tigers, lions, elephants, rhinos, antelopes, …
In fact as you see in the picture, the monorail is always turned towards the park in order to fully appreciate the spectacle of animals in the wild.
The ride takes about 30 minutes with a guide.
How long does it take to visit the Bronx Zoo?
To visit the entire zoo it takes a good half a day, that is 4-5 hours.
Now if you have less time, it is quite possible to take the planner at the entrance of the zoo and note the animals you want to see absolutely and set a specific course in the zoo.
Me for example, I didn’t have much time to visit because I had to go to the Botanical Garden in the Bronx. So I saw all the main animals and stayed 1h30-2h. Anyway I was all alone and I quickly walked between each pen. : (
But hey it just all depends on what you want to see and you can only stay there like me for 2 hours as a full day, unless you want to take your time !!! 🙂
Is the zoo well maintained?
Yes the zoo is very clean the walkways, the animals pens and the tables or seating areas… there is no concern on that side.
Besides, it feels really great at the Bronx Zoo because nature really is important and it’s a special place of its own.
This is not a zoo with tar and concrete everywhere. No, each pen has its own environment and walkways and the common areas are really nice as you can see from these photos.
What else can you find at zoo?
If you are there during lunch, you may eat in their restaurants. In the summer, there are restaurants everywhere in the zoo. In the off season, there is only one big one that primarily serves food like fast food … its not very good. I tasted and I did not like:-)
If not within the zoo, there is also a small train that wanders the aisles.
And know that it is also possible to rent wheelchairs and strollers.
How to get to the zoo?
The zoo is located in the heart of the Bronx.
To get there from Manhattan, the easiest way is to take the subway or metro 2 or 5 and stop at the station West Farms Square – E. Tremont Av or Pelham Pkwy..
Times Square, it takes 40-45 min on the metro.
If you come by car, there are 2 parking garages: one to the south-west of the zoo and the Northeast.
How much is the zoo entrance fee?
There is a fixed entry fee but then many of the attractions you must pay more.
So to put it simply, the basic input (= General Admission Tickets) is:
– For adults: $ 16.95 (between early and late Nov. Dec.), $ 19.95 (between early Jan and late March.) And $ 16.95 (from April to late Oct.)
– For children (3-12 years): $ 12.95 all year
Then if you want to take the Pass that includes everything (= Total Experience tickets), the price is:
– For adults: $ 33.95 (from April to late Oct.) and $ 23.95 (between late March and early Nov.)
– For children (3-12 years): $ 23.95 (from April to late Oct.) and $ 16.95 (between late March and early Nov.)
Know that if you book your tickets by internet, you have a -10% discount: www.bronxzoo.com
What are the hours of the zoo?
Zoo hours are different in different periods of the year.
In summer (from April to late October), the zoo is open from 10 am to 5pm during the week and from 10 am to 5:30pm on weekends and holidays.
In winter (November to late March), it is open between 10am and 4:30.
What times are best to go to the zoo?
I think it is definitely better to come between the months of April and October, in winter, I’m not sure that the animals are very dynamic or especially visible.
Now it is also true that the summer it’s 35 ° C in the shade, I’m not sure either that they move a lot.
Finally, perhaps the ideal is as I did, coming in spring or early fall !!! 🙂
Where is the Bronx Zoo?
It is therefore located in the middle of the Bronx Borough:
The Bronx Zoo is just one of the greatest and most wonderful zoo’s in the world.
So if you come to New York from April to late October, a stop at the zoo will really be fun and entertaining … and especially if you bring your kids !!!
I recommend 100% this zoo … even if it’s true that it takes a minimum of half a day to go, visit and come back! 🙂
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