A family destination and Israel’s biggest tourist attraction, the Jerusalem Biblical Zoo covers over 62 acres of stunning terrain in the south of Jerusalem. The park centers on a vast man-made lake complete with waterfalls and side pools, surrounded by spacious lawns and shaded beauty spots. The park includes a wildlife savannah with free-roaming animals and a visitor’s train that provides transportation throughout the park with several stations along the route.
Desert falcon at the Zoo by Flickr user Kenzoka
Over 170 diverse species of animals are here to be seen. And this being Jerusalem and the ‘Biblical’ zoo, most of these were mentioned in the Bible. That’s not to say that other animals are missing, however, and most animals you might expect to see at a zoo will be found here.
Stunning views to be enjoyed by Flickr user Kenzoka
The Biblical Zoo includes a children’s zoo including a petting corner and a playground with an adjacent snack bar for watchful parents. During holiday periods, the Friendly Animal Houses enables guided, hands-on encounters with less-fearsome animals while the Noah’s Ark Sculpture Garden is an exotic new playground designed by sculptress Niki de Saint Phalle (creator of the renowned Mifletzet or Monster children’s slide in Kiryat HaYovel) and architect Mario Botta (designer of Tel Aviv University’s Cymbalista Synagogue and Jewish Cultural Center). The zoo’s visitors’ center, which overlooks the African savannah – is shaped in the form of an ark, with an auditorium, a temporary exhibits gallery, computer information stations, a souvenir shop and a cafeteria situated on the ark’s deck.
Visiting the Jerusalem Biblical Zoo
Biblical Ram by Flickr user Kenzoka
For up to date information on opening times, getting here, and entrance charges, please see the Jerusalem Biblical Zoo Website, here, or call +972-2-6750111.
Sites to be admired by Flickr user Kenzoka
An alternative, and incredibly fun way to see the zoo is by segway tour – tours include the entry fee.
The photos in this article were kindly provided by Ziv Turner from Kfar Sava, Israel. You can see more of his photos at his Flickr acount, here, or visit, http://colaholic1972.wordpress.com/ where he regularly blogs.