Nannette Mizell

Nannette Mizell

Published: 15 Sep 2023


The Johannesburg Zoo is a fascinating destination for both locals and tourists alike. Founded in 1904, it is one of the oldest and largest zoos in South Africa, spanning over 55 hectares of land. With its diverse collection of animals, beautiful botanical gardens, and various educational programs, the Johannesburg Zoo offers an unforgettable experience for visitors of all ages.

But beyond its popularity as a recreational spot, the Johannesburg Zoo holds many enigmatic facts that are worth exploring. From unique animal species to conservation efforts, this article will unveil nine intriguing facts about the Johannesburg Zoo that will leave you amazed and wanting to visit this remarkable attraction.

Table of Contents

The Johannesburg Zoo: A Haven for Wildlife Lovers

Located in the vibrant city of Johannesburg, South Africa, the Johannesburg Zoo is a popular destination for both locals and tourists. With its diverse collection of animals and commitment to conservation, this zoo offers a fascinating glimpse into the natural world. Let’s explore 9 enigmatic facts about the Johannesburg Zoo.

The Oldest Zoo in South Africa

Established in 1904, the Johannesburg Zoo holds the distinction of being the oldest zoo in South Africa. With over a century of history, this iconic institution has played a significant role in wildlife conservation and education.

Home to Over 2,000 Animals

The Johannesburg Zoo houses a diverse range of wildlife, boasting more than 2,000 animals from various species. From majestic big cats to charming primates and fascinating reptiles, visitors can witness the beauty and diversity of the animal kingdom.

A Sanctuary for Endangered Species

Playing a vital role in conservation efforts, the Johannesburg Zoo is dedicated to providing a safe haven for endangered species. Through breeding programs and collaborative initiatives, the zoo strives to protect and preserve these threatened animals for future generations.

World-Class Exhibits and Habitats

The zoo features a range of world-class exhibits and habitats designed to replicate the natural environments of the animals. From the lush African Savannah to the dense rainforests, visitors can immerse themselves in captivating and immersive experiences.

Pioneering Conservation Research Projects

The Johannesburg Zoo is committed to making a positive impact beyond its boundaries. Through innovative research projects and partnerships with local and international organizations, the zoo contributes to the scientific understanding of wildlife conservation and ecology.

Interactive and Educational Experiences

Besides observing the incredible array of animals, visitors to the Johannesburg Zoo can engage in interactive and educational experiences. From guided tours to informative talks and feeding sessions, there are ample opportunities to learn about the fascinating behaviors and characteristics of the animal residents.

Engaging Activities for All Ages

The Johannesburg Zoo caters to visitors of all ages, offering a range of activities and facilities. Children can enjoy playgrounds and engaging exhibits designed specifically for them, while adults can relax in tranquil surroundings and appreciate the beauty of nature.

A Hub for Community Outreach

In addition to its conservation efforts, the Johannesburg Zoo actively engages with the local community. Through outreach programs, workshops, and events, the zoo aims to raise awareness about wildlife conservation and inspire a sense of responsibility towards nature.

Visiting the Johannesburg Zoo is not only an opportunity to admire the incredible diversity of the animal kingdom, but also a chance to support and contribute to vital conservation efforts. The 9 enigmatic facts about the Johannesburg Zoo highlight the incredible work done by this institution in preserving and celebrating our planet’s precious wildlife.


In conclusion, Johannesburg Zoo is a fascinating destination for animal lovers and nature enthusiasts alike. With its rich history, diverse wildlife, and commitment to conservation, it offers a unique experience for visitors of all ages. From the enigmatic origins of its name to the impressive collection of animals from around the world, there is always something new to discover at the Johannesburg Zoo. Whether you’re marveling at the majesty of a lion, learning about the unique behaviors of primates, or simply enjoying a leisurely stroll through the beautifully landscaped grounds, a visit to this iconic landmark is sure to leave a lasting impression.


1. What are the opening hours of Johannesburg Zoo?
The Johannesburg Zoo is open to the public from 8:30 am to 5:30 pm every day of the week.

2. Can I bring my own food and drinks to the zoo?
While outside food and drinks are not permitted inside the zoo, there are several cafes and kiosks available where visitors can purchase refreshments.

3. Are there any guided tours available?
Yes, Johannesburg Zoo offers guided tours for visitors who want a more in-depth experience. These tours must be booked in advance.

4. Is there parking available at the zoo?
Yes, there is ample parking available at the zoo. Visitors can park their vehicles in designated parking lots near the entrance.

5. Can I interact with the animals at Johannesburg Zoo?
For the safety of both visitors and animals, direct contact with the animals is not allowed. However, there are interactive exhibits and animal encounters available for visitors to learn more about the wildlife.

6. Is the Johannesburg Zoo accessible for individuals with disabilities?
Yes, the Johannesburg Zoo is wheelchair accessible and provides facilities to accommodate individuals with disabilities. Additionally, trained staff members are available to assist visitors if needed.

7. Are there any special events or shows at the zoo?
Yes, Johannesburg Zoo frequently hosts special events, educational programs, and animal shows for visitors to enjoy. It is recommended to check the zoo’s website or inquire at the entrance for upcoming events.

8. Can I bring my pet to the zoo?
No, pets are not allowed in the zoo premises for the safety and well-being of both animals and visitors.

9. Can I buy souvenirs at Johannesburg Zoo?
Yes, there are gift shops located within the zoo where visitors can purchase souvenirs, toys, and other merchandise as a memento of their visit.