In the heart of the city of Dublin’s Phoenix Park you’ll find the Dublin Zoo. The Dublin Zoo opened in 1831 with over 100 mammals and birds that were donated by the London Zoo, this over 180 year old zoo is one of the oldest in the world and Ireland’s most popular visitor attraction. Set on 28 hectares, the Dublin Zoo is now home to around 400 animals representing 100 different species.
The zoo has seen a lot of changes and improvements in the past 15 years and now showcases their animals in themed areas such as; the Asian Forest, Fringes of the Arctic, the African Plains where you’ll find exhibits like the African Savanna and Gorilla Rainforest, there is also the Kaziranga Forest Trail, Reptile House, Family Farm and the South American House. Two buildings I can’t forget are the Robert House and the Haughton House. The Robert House was opened back in 1902, this beautiful red bricked building was named after the president of the Royal Zoological Society of Ireland at the time and now is home to a variety of rare birds from around the world and endangered bats. The Haughton House, built in 1898 in memory of Samuel Haughton the Royal Zoological Society of Ireland’s secretary, is another beautiful building with a second story wrap around veranda with fantastic views. It once housed 10 wild animal ‘dens’, tearooms and a lecture room but was recently renovated and is now used for a variety of special events such as weddings and corporate functions.
The Dublin Zoo was at first not on my radar but when in a new city that has a zoo I try to go, so when deciding to visit Dublin I added the Dublin Zoo to my itinerary. It was more than a pleasant surprise when I realized this was an amazing zoo!
To read more about my visit to Ireland please visit “The World As I See It” – my travel blog @ http://ladystravelblog.wordpress.com