Situated at 323 Boom Street, the zoo is the largest in South Africa and rated as one of the top zoos in the world and is run by the National Research Foundation. There are 3117 animals at the zoo and it has the largest inland marine aquarium in the country. The zoo also has a reptile park and the third largest collection of exotic trees. They have an "adopt an animal scheme" and offer various tours for visitors. The zoo plays an important role in protecting and conserving threatened species.
The Pretoria Zoo was established in 1899 and is the only Zoo in South Africa with National Status and is rated as one of the top Zoos in the world, attracting hundreds and thousands of Local and International Visitors annually. The 80-hectare Zoo in Pretoria houses 2586 specimens of 126 Mammal species, 1425 specimens of 158 Bird species, 4189 specimens of 283 Fish species, 235 specimens of 21 Invertebrate species, 447 specimens of 90 Reptile species, and 29 specimens of 4 Amphibian species. The total length of the walkways in the Zoo in Pretoria is approximately 6km. An Aquarium and Reptile Park also form part of the Zoo facility in Pretoria. The Aquarium is the largest Inland Marine Aquarium in the country. The third largest collection of Exotic trees can be found at the Zoo.
Most areas and rest rooms are wheelchair accessible. The security staff are on duty 24 hours for your convenience. There is a restaurant situated centrally in the Zoo, which serves meals and snacks. Various kiosks in the Zoo sell light refreshments such as cold drinks and chips. The 'Zoovenir' Shop has something special to take home of those who weren't able to visit the Zoo.
There are numerous Picnic Spots were you can enjoy a rest in the shade of giant trees. Braai facilities are available at the Picnic Spot next to the Apies River. The Zoo Choo-Choo Tractor Train takes you on rides through parts of the Zoo. A cable-car ride provides you with a Panoramic View of the Zoo and surrounding City.
The Zoo also offer exciting tours:
* Aquarium tours - explore the fascinating world of underwater life by attending an evening tour through the National Zoological Gardens aquarium.
* Night tours - treat your family to an exciting adventure. Go on a night tour and explore the fascinating world of our nocturnal animals.
The biodiversity has flourished in the newly-established ponds. These include Frogs and Tadpoles The National Zoological Gardens has a number of water bodies that have to be managed and maintained. These include the water at the Brown Lemur (Eulemur fulvus) Habitat, that at the Greater Flamingos (Phoenicopterus roseus), the one at the Giant Anteater (Myrmecophaga tridactyla), the common Hippopotamus (Hippopotamus amphibious), and the water source at the African Penguins (Spheniscus demersus) to name but a few. These water bodies are divided into three types, namely those making use of circulatory pumps, those that are cleaned with chlorine washed and natural water sources making use of plants, such as in ponds. But it’s the latter form of water conservation that is most focused on.
The Zoo is open 7 days a week from 8:00 to 17:30 daily. Ample, secure parking is available opposite and at the main entrance of the National Zoological Gardens. Security staff are on duty at all parking facilities for your peace of mind. Golf carts and children’s pushcarts are available for rent.