Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Singapore Zoo at last :)

It's been one year since I came here and till now we have never been to the zoo - the top tourist destination in Singapore although Naveen had gone once .

So we finally decided to go this tuesday, we had a long weekend with Monday being election day and hari raya falling on Tuesday .Since it was a public holiday there was bit of queue and crowd but once you buy your ticket and enter inside the crowd starts disappearing .ristWe had plans of reaching early morning ,the zoo opens at 8:30 but we got up at 8 and left by 9:30 and reached the zoo by 11.Because it was a public holiday we had to wait in queue for 30 min to get the tickets . Not bad given there were so many people.
The below chart will give you an idea about ticket pricing . Combined ticket can be bought for visit to multiple attractions like the bird park and the night safari . We opted for zoo +bird park . It's valid for 30 days which means very soon there will be one more article on bird park .

There are some food joints outside the zoo so we bought few snacks before entering . It's advisable to bring some light snacks and drinks from outside as the prices here are double the normal price . And outside food are allowed , nobody will check your bags unless you bring something so aromatic that it ends up attracting both animals and humans alike .

Singapore zoo is a open concept Zoo . There are no cages neither are any of the animals tied by a chain . It's build on the concept of rain forest so it gives you a feeling that you are walking in a jungle .

Naveen at his previous outing to the Zoo.
There are around 2000 species of animals and the zoo is spread across 28 hectares of land .It will take you atleast 5 hours to cover the entire zoo.

This was the first animal we saw and I went into photo clicking frenzy . It seems like a some breed of monkey very small though and ofcourse was very cute .
Then you come across bridge called treetop trail which will be our entrance to this man made rain forest . Below the bridge there is river in which crocs can be found so the treetop trail actually gives you a feeling that you are crossing the river and entering the jungle .
Now it's time to decide what to be seen first . Make a note that there are 3 to 4 shows which you can see so it's imp to plan all the animals seeing around this shows .

You can get up ,close and personal with animals during their feeding time.

White tigers are one of the main attractions of the zoo .
If you were not aware below are some interesting facts about them.

As you see there are no cages . They are separated by a steep slope which has moats hidden cleverly under vegetation , I guess the animals are aware that they cannot escape but it's not so obvious to humans that they are actually caged .

In 2008 these white tigers attacked a cleaner and mauled him to death . Don't blame the tiger as the cleaner purposefully jumped into their habitat and started provoking them .

Just to refresh your memory on what a
warthong is - he is the famous character
pumba from the lion king .
I dint like them as they dint look as they were in good shape . I love the screen character more.

Me with agh... I think mongoose .

pgmy hippo

If you can't read let me write it down-
The pgmy hippos can't swim and it's body is too dense to float . It tiptoes under river bed gracefully like a underwater ballerina . To breathe it uses it's hind legs to push up above the under water to surface .
We were actually standing in a row near the glass pond bc one active hippo decided to swim back and forth to entertain us .

Be ready to walk a lot as the zoo is pretty big . There are trams also which will give you a mini tour around the zoo in 20 min but we dint go in that as we wouldn't have been able to take pictures .
It was 12:30 and we decided to have food. I was so hungry by all the walking. There is only one foodcourt named ah meng and it has many options. We took veg biryani set.

The first show we saw was 'Rainforest fights back' . The Shaw theater where it was hosted was jam packed, the show is about some evil guy wanting to cut the trees and how the animals trouble him and fight back.
There is a girl who narrates everything and as you watch you see monkeys, birds, ducks emerging out one by one . The monkeys will come through the ropes hanging above the stage so its fun to watch them and you are specifically instructed not to keep any food items outside.

Few interesting facts about 'Ah Meng' . The food court is dedicated to Singapore's famous orangutan named 'Ah Meng' who died in 2008 due to old age. The orangutan was iconic to Singapore and was the first one who helped start a program called 'Breakfast with Orangutans' .
Yes you heard it right ,Singapore is probably the only zoo in the world where you can have your breakfast sitting next to orangutans for probably $20 dollars.


this one looked old and was starting constantly at people who were taking the pictures. It was sitting in that position till we left that place. Looks unhappy to me !!!

Lions ,look at how they just sit there and stare at everyone. I wonder do they get bored ??

A male zebra flashes this smile to threaten young males who try to steal his potential mates.

The smile also sharpens the male's sense to detect certain scents in the mare's unit.
The presence of the scents = mares are ready to mate.

And we thought the zebra was happy to see us !!!!!!!!!!!

Giraffe,they were pretty close and as usual no barrage. It was painful to watch them struggle hard to reach for food on the ground.

Our next show was 'Elephants of Asia' which started at 3:30 pm. we reached there by 3:10 and my god the place was fully occupied. we somehow managed to get a seat.
The interesting info shared was all the elephants in singapore zoo are trained in sinhalese(Local lang of Sri Lanka) why ??

I dint get the exact reason but its something like one of the elephants came from Sri lanka.

The show basically depicts elephants at work having fun. They showed how elephants can move heavy logs.

Gaint turle - this is one animal which amazed us by its sheer size. I had never seen anything like it before.

Just to give you an idea you can compare the kid standing next to it. It can stretch its neck very far and it can also come upto my shoulders

Rhinos- They had scars on their bodies and very pretty dusty

After I came back from zoo I googled around to see some images and strangely this particular snake pic was there in many places and guess what it was lying in the same position.

I think it likes coiling like that !!!

I was surprised to see penguins kept in open. I was expecting them to see in an enclosed ice chamber,turns out they are African penguins

Beautiful lotus leaf spread across a small pond..no lotus though !!!!
Some african theme going on with utensils and huts

Then we understood the theme. Welcome to the largest display of baboons in a zoo.There are a colony of 40 I guess.

Tapir use scent to talk to one another. They mark their territories with urine;males use it as a scent marker when looking foe mates.

Tapirs use high pitched sounds to pacify their young ones or to announce their location.

Kangaroos are kept in a section called Australian
Outback. Its obvious from the no crossing sign that they freely move around a big ground solely meant for them.

Singapore zoo is a fun place for family which some of the shows being interactive and educative as well. As for us this trip was long overdue and we were not dissapointed.It lives up to its name of a open concept zoo.

The ride back home took some time as the bus stands were pretty crowded.


Curious Cat said...

I think you are sitting with otters in that picture.

Chaithra and Naveen said...

Yep you are right ,they were otters.
I never knew what they were before!!

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