PARIS ZOO … FANTASTIC …

There is no more pleasant a way to spend a few hours than visiting Paris’s zoo : Parc Zoologique de Paris.  You can even spend half a day there.     The zoo, once known as the Parc Zoologique de Vincennes – Vincennes Zoological Park – is *new* in that the previous zoo on the same […]

Paris's Zoo (cc Marilyn Z.Tomlins)

Paris’s Zoo (cc Marilyn Z.Tomlins)

There is no more pleasant a way to spend a few hours than visiting Paris’s zoo : Parc Zoologique de Paris.  You can even spend half a day there.

Paris's zoo (cc Marilyn Z.Tomlins)

Paris’s zoo (cc Marilyn Z.Tomlins)

 

 

The zoo, once known as the Parc Zoologique de Vincennes – Vincennes Zoological Park – is *new* in that the previous zoo on the same site in the district of Vincennes on the eastern periphery of Paris, which dated from 1934 had closed on November 30, 2008 for a renovation which had taken until April 12, 2014.

I often used to go to what I think of as the *old* zoo, and now I have an annual subscription so can visit the *new* one as often as I wish.  (About pricing in a moment.)

The zoo’s name change is probably due to its management, the Musèum National d’Histoire Naturelle – National Museum of History – having thought that foreign visitors who would not know that Vincennes is a district of Paris and therefore not wishing to make a trip outside of the capital, would not go there. However, do know that the zoo is in Paris, and easy to reach but about that too in a moment.

The zoo, as before, covers 14.5 hectares (36 acres) around an artificial rock – the Big Rock – which can be seen from afar. In the time of the previous zoo visitors could take a lift up to the top of it, however this is not now possible anymore. I used to go to the top and it was a splendid view from up there so I do regret that the rock is now closed to visitors.

The Big Rock in Paris's zoo (cc copyright Marilyn Z Tomlins)

The Big Rock in Paris’s zoo (cc copyright Marilyn Z Tomlins)

A visit to the zoo costs €22 ($30.55 – £18.20) for an adult. Yes, it is expensive. For a child it is €14 ($19.44 – £11.70) and it will cost a young adult (12-15) €16.25 ($13.58 – £ 22.57). Yes it’s expensive for all but you will realise that to have constructed the zoo and to keep it in the tiptop condition it is costs money. You can also buy an annual ticket, as I did, which will cost you €65 ($90.27 – £54.33) for an adult, €40 ($55,55 – £34.44) for a child and €55 ($76.38 – £45.97) for a young adult. Journalists go in for free but you need to present our journalist credentials.

And this is how to get to the zoo:

Take Métro line 8 to the station of Porte Dorée and on exiting you walk towards the large gilded statue, and you pass it and walk alongside the park on your right and soon you will see the square in front of the zoo to your left.  That square is on the intersection of Avenue Daumesnil and the Route de la Ceinture du Lac. And it is in Paris’s 12 arrondissement (district).

The large gilded statue at Porte Doree (cc Marilyn Z.Tomlins)

The large gilded statue at Porte Doree (cc Marilyn Z.Tomlins)

 

Opening hours are from 10 a.m. to 18 p.m. from the middle of March to the middle of October, and from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. from the middle of October to the middle of March. And the zoo is open every day of the week. Over a weekend and on public holidays the zoo will even stay open until 7.30 p.m.

The zoo is laid out in five sectors, each with the natural environment of the species it houses. The sectors are Patagonia, the Sahel-Sudan, Guyana, Madagascar and Europe. There are altogether 176 species in the five, ranging in size from birds to giraffes. However there are no elephants.  But as if to compensate this spring (2015) three lion cups, a giraffe calf and a lemur (primate) pup have been born.

Paris's zoo (cc Marilyn Z.Tomlins)

Paris’s zoo (cc Marilyn Z.Tomlins)

Paris's zoo (cc Marilyn Z.Tomlins)

Paris’s zoo (cc Marilyn Z.Tomlins)

 

There are several cafés and refreshment kiosks in the park. Also a restaurant with service. Also a picnic area where you can sit on the lawn and enjoy the picnic lunch you had brought or along – or which you would have bought at one of the kiosks.

If you have an annual ticket you will be given a 5% discount at all of the eating places.

Your annual ticket will also give you a 10% discount at the zoo’s souvenir shop. Believe me the souvenir shop has a big variety: if you have a child with you be warned that popping into the shop is going to cost you a fortune because of all the beautiful things to buy.

By the way, if your starting point in Paris is close to Tram No 3 (T3) you can also take it to the zoo. It too will take you to Porte Dorée.

The baboons are delightful.

Paris's zoo (cc Marilyn Z.Tomlins)

Paris’s zoo (cc Marilyn Z.Tomlins)

 

Enjoy your visit.

Marilyn Z. Tomlins

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Should you wish to contact me you can do so by email: marilyn@marilynztomlins.com