Dublin Zoo provides entertainment for all, and makes a great break from big old stone buildings and pints of Guinness.
Using the mini-card discounts available in the hostel reception, the entry price is very reasonable, and getting there is easier enough. Once inside, the layout excellently guides you through and past the animal enclosures, giving you an opportunity to see Tigers, Wolves, Snow Leopards and Orang Utans on one side, with lemurs and other monkeys jumping around on the lakes small islands on the other.
The African Safari area is very impressive with a great viewing pathway along the edge of a large plain. Giraffes and Zebra impress with their diversity, while the Rhinos dose near the far wall. It sucessfully recreates that African feel, but one better, all the animals are right in front of you. The Hippo is another good spot, although getting a photo is tricky as he surfaces for only a few seconds at a time as he circles his shady pool.
The Gorillas and Chimpanzees are great fun to watch, climbing and swinging around their enclosures, hunting out food and grooming while the younger apes play fight and chase each other about. There’s also some aquatic animals to check out in Dublin Zoo, sealions and penguins both pulling in crowds as they cruise happily around their pools. Catching a feeding is highly recommended as you’ll get to see them more active.
Finally, the highlight of the tour is the new born Elephant. Bigger than you might expect for less than a month old this baby is still very young and doesn’t do too much. If you’re lucky you’ll see him testing out his legs and taking a little stroll. Imagine new born Bambi, but much heavier!
While the park is very family orientated there is still plenty for those that are young at heart to enjoy. The animals at Dublin Zoo are spectacular regardless of age, although heading over on a week day will help reduce the crowds and give a better view for the feedings.