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A Local’s Ultimate Guide to Adelaide Zoo

A Local’s Ultimate Guide to Adelaide Zoo

No matter your age, visiting the zoo is always a thrilling experience! I am proud to say that Adelaide has one of the best zoos in all of Australia: the Adelaide Zoo.

Housing more than 2,500 animals both exotic and native to the country, the zoo is one of the city’s best destinations. The fact that it’s just 15 minutes of walking from the CBD makes it very easy to visit!

Here, I’ve created a list of the best offerings of the zoo to guide newcomers. From animal attractions, food stalls, and event venues, I’ve got you covered!

What makes Adelaide Zoo a must-visit?

Adelaide Zoo is a must-visit because it’s very accessible and its attractions are irresistible! It houses the only pandas in Australia, making it great for any Kung Fu Panda fan!

The zoo first opened its gates in 1883, providing a lush space where humans and animals can meet each other in a relaxed and vibrant sanctuary. 

They follow strict animal caretaking guidelines to ensure that the critters are never stressed or uncomfortable!

Fun fact: Adelaide Zoo is a conservation charity which means that for every ticket you buy, you help save local and foreign animals from extinction! 

What are Adelaide Zoo’s best attractions?

Some of Adelaide Zoo’s best attractions are the giant pandas Fu Ni and Wang Wang, its Southeast Asian animal wing, feeding experiences, and more.

Australia’s Only Pandas

When I think of Adelaide Zoo, my mind immediately goes to Fu Ni and Wang Wang. These adorable giant pandas are the only ones of their kind in all of Australia!

The two pandas are at the zoo to help in multiplying their numbers. While they haven’t been successful in making a cub as of writing, their presence helps in raising awareness and funds for their preservation.

You’ll find them spending most of their days chewing bamboo and sleeping. Sounds like a dream job to me!

Upon seeing Wang Wang, I instantly filled my phone with videos of him chewing on some carrots loudly! He moves super slowly, so there were plenty of chances to zoom in on his cute face!

Aside from them, there are also two red pandas in the zoo! It was a joy to see Mishry and Ravi who have curious looks in their eyes. 

Southeast Asian and African Animals

You won’t need to fly for hours just to see the animals from the rainforests of Southeast Asia and Central Africa! Adelaide Zoo houses many of its natives, such as the Sumatran orangutan, Asian tapir, and African lion!

My personal favorite is the Sumatran tiger. They move majestically, and their jaws pack quite a punch when they chew through meat!

It was also fun to see one of our closest relatives (by DNA!), Kluet the orangutan, napping with his blanket when I visited. The zoo guides told me that he’s fond of tropical fruit! 

Feeding Experiences

In Adelaide Zoo, their tame creatures will never bite the hand that feeds! You can have an up-close encounter and feeding experience with a penguin, tortoise, tiger, and giraffe here! 

When you feed a giraffe, though, don’t be surprised when you see its 21-inch tongue! 

Aonika, their giant tortoise, was a darling to feed. Although she walked slowly, her head bobbed fast to reach out the cabbage in my hand. 

The best part about the feeding experience is seeing them become friendly to you afterward! I instantly grabbed the chance to have a selfie with the penguins here after giving them their fishy lunch!

Marsupial Encounter

At this point, marsupials are one of the mascots of Australia, and for good reason! They’re unique-looking, cute, and quirky!

It was a surprise for me to discover that lemurs can purr and mew! These energetic creatures made me giddy like a child because they were the ones to approach me as I held a dish of their favorite snacks. 

They’re quite a funny sight though. The three bachelor lemurs, Ejada, Benoky, and Belo, don’t mind showing their posteriors as they munch on the tomatoes you’ll serve them.

The koalas were also a joy to see! Named Sophie and Louise, the duo simply blinked slowly as I fed them branches of their favorite: fresh gum leaves. 


Birdwatchers will have a blast visiting Adelaide Zoo’s aviaries. They house some of the most stunning birds, such as the hyacinth macaw, palm cockatoo, and superb lyrebird!

You’ll be surprised to know that their hyacinth macaw is called Cool Cat! He’s a fan of nuts and bananas, and he thanks the keepers with gentle screeches to show his appreciation! 

I saw how well taken care of they were through the stunning colors of their feathers. Take a photo right as sunlight hits them to get a stunning shot! 

Nature Playground

Nature Playground

Adelaide Zoo stays true to its goal of making animals comfortable, meaning they don’t force them to always be outside. Unfortunately, this means that some attractions are unavailable at certain times of the day.

If you’re bringing a child with you, allow them to spend their energy at Adelaide Zoo’s Nature Playground instead. There are plenty of obstacles for bouncing and climbing here.

It’s also a fantastic spot for photos because the background here is nice and well-lit. Just be sure to keep your children hydrated, as it can get hot here! 

How much are tickets to the Adelaide Zoo?

Here are Adelaide Zoo’s ticket prices:

Type of ticketPrice
Adult (15 years and above)$42.50
Child (4 – 14 years)$22.50
Adult ticket for Adelaide Zoo and Monarto Safari Park $65.65
Child ticket for Adelaide Zoo and Monarto Safari Park $35.65
Concession ticket for Adelaide Zoo and Monarto Safari Park $48.40
How do you get to the Adelaide Zoo?
You can go to the Adelaide Zoo by taking a 10 to 15-minute walk from Frome Road. There’s also a bus stop (Bus number 271) directly in front of the zoo. 

Where can you eat inside the Adelaide Zoo?

Where can you eat inside the Adelaide Zoo

Visiting Adelaide Zoo can be tiring if you don’t bring snacks with you. If you’re feeling hungry, check out some of the restaurants and cafes inside the zoo. 

Wisteria Restaurant

You can eat and watch the idyllic view of Adelaide Zoo from the comfort of Wisteria Restaurant. It has a laidback and simple design, making it blend seamlessly with the rest of the zoo. 

With cakes, sandwiches, and pastries, the food here is perfect for children. For the adults, they also have a great range of local wines, which you can sip on as your children play at the nearby Nature’s Playground.

Fig Tree Cafe

Fig Tree Cafe

As one can tell by its name, you can visit Fig Tree Cafe near the fig tree by the center of the zoo. I bought ice cream here to cool down from the heat. 

They also offer some finger food which you can take on the go. This includes fries, burgers, hotdogs, and nuggets.

What are Adelaide Zoo’s event venues?

What are Adelaide Zoo’s event venues

The Adelaide Zoo is a great place to hold your next event! There’s plenty of space, it’s very accessible, and you get to tour the zoo as part of your event!

Bamboo Forest Pavilion

Bamboo Forest Pavilion

Bamboos and pandas are the perfect duo. If you want a venue close to the only pandas in Australia, Bamboo Forest Pavilion is the place for you.

It has stunning architecture that feels light and breezy. The mix of cool green and gray makes it compatible with almost any event too!

Immersion Longhouse

Immersion Longhouse

Immersion Longhouse has a breathtaking Asian jungle theme. It features a long walkway that is perfect for more than 100 guests!

The venue provides you with a great view of their Sumatran tigers, Delilah and Kembali. They’re accompanied by their three playful cubs. 

Sanctuary Adelaide Zoo

Sanctuary Adelaide Zoo

Sanctuary is the premier venue in the Adelaide Zoo. It has won the Blanco Horner Management Group Award for its service and sustainable menu. 

It has a cocktail and theater room, both of which have state-of-the-art architecture. With its minimalist design, the venue is a welcome contrast to the towering canopies of the zoo.

When will be a great time to visit Adelaide Zoo?

While a visit to the Adelaide Zoo is easy to book through their website anytime, I advise you to check out the park on specific dates or times to have a unique experience!

Twilight (Until 8 PM)

Twilight (Until 8 PM)

Some animals are sleepyheads and prefer to greet the guests when the sun is down. To watch them past 5 PM, I advise you to book the after-hours trip, which extends your trip up to 8 PM.

I had the opportunity to attend a party held during the night, which was fun, as I got to have more space to meet the animals. The zoo also provided live music and face painting that made the event a blast! 


Another great time to visit Adelaide Zoo is during the festive Christmas season. Zookeepers get to play Santa for a day as they give out food and presents to the animals!

On Christmas day, animals receive a wide range of gifts, including meat, tropical fruits, veggies, and more. 

The zoo also organizes a special Christmas lunch for families, so be sure to check that out!

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