For some odd reason, the idea to visit the Taipei Zoo struck us on a particularly hot & humid day this past weekend. Hubby and I had just finished a late lunch and had no plans, other than to beat the heat, until we started pondering a visit to the Zoo. True, it was scalding hot outside, but it also sounded more exciting than heading home to sit on the sofa! [In retrospect - excellent thinking on our part]
By the time we came to this conclusion and hopped on the MRT it was already pretty late in the day. As we rode the MRT brown line south towards the last stop on the line -Taipei Zoo- I checked the website on my iPhone and was distraught to see the published hours said the Zoo closed at 5pm daily. It was already 4:30pm... but I didn't feel like bursting our bubble, so I kept my lips sealed in hopes that the website might be wrong, and --- Yes! --- It turns out the Zoo is open until 9pm! :)
We arrived just before 5pm and entered the Zoo by swiping our Taipei Easy Cards (MRT cards). The entrance fee was $30 NTD (= $1 USD); easy and affordable.
Not only was the Zoo open later in the day, but we were also pleasantly surprised by the size and quality of the park. With the sun sinking lower in the sky and plenty of places for a pit stop, it turned out to be a lovely adventure for a Saturday afternoon. There were various places to stop for drinks or snacks, stroller and wheelchair rental available (we joked that I should get a wheelchair since I'm preggers), shaded seating areas, indoor exhibits with nice cool air conditioning, and plenty of large outdoor habitats for the biggest critters.
One of the highlights was the Giant Panda exhibit, home to two pandas, gifted to Taiwan from China (apparently China is the only place to find Pandas anymore). There were all of the regulars too - elephants, hippos, giraffe, zebra, etc. We're animal lovers all the way around, so we enjoyed everything we saw. In total we probably only saw 1/4 of the zoo. We will have to go back another day!
Not too shabby for a Saturday afternoon outing. After almost 3 hours of sightseeing, it was time to rest!
Just a few pics ~~~
|Posing with an 'Elephant'|
|Their flamingos didn't seem as pink as I expected|
|Gorgeous Owl in the Nocturnal Exhibit|
|Monkeys on the move!|
|Bambi, and bambino|
|A real panda bear!|
|Bird & Wildlife refuge area|