Here are Top Zoos and Wildlife Parks You Must Visit in New Zealand
Because New Zealand is blessed with some fantastic wildlife and breathtaking natural scenery. In particular, there is nothing more wonderful than seeing wild animals living in their natural environment.
1. Hamilton Zoo
Hamilton Zoo is the central zoological garden of Hamilton, New Zealand. Covers over 62 acres of land. It is located on Brymer Road in the Hamilton suburb of Rotokauri, on the outskirts of the metropolitan area to the northwest. Hamilton City Council maintains administration with support from the Department of Recreation and Welfare Handling. This zoo also holds its name to be fully accredited by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums.
Hamilton Zoo is home to more than 600 species of native and exotic animals. See exotic species like giraffes, zebras, chimpanzees, red pandas, lemurs, Sumatran tigers, and farm animals like Kune Kune pigs.
This is the website of Hamilton Zoo: https://hamiltonzoo.co.nz/
2. Auckland Zoo
This zoo is the largest zoo in New Zealand (16.35 hectares – 40 acres), located next to Western Springs park not far from Auckland’s central business district. Auckland Council runs it with the Auckland Zoological Society as a supporting organization.
It is home to more than 120 different species of animals. With The animal cages are natural, wide and airy, with convenient locations for watching animals. Some of the most common animals are red pandas, kiwis, tigers, elephants, and meerkats.
This is the website: https://www.aucklandzoo.co.nz/
3. Wellington Zoo
Wellington Zoo was the country’s first zoo located in Wellington’s green belt. Covering 32 acres, it’s home to more than 500 animals, from Hero HQ’s amazing insects and invertebrates to New Zealand’s only bears – the ASB sun bears Magnificent Malayan and lions, tigers, giraffes, Tasmanian Devils, and many more.
One of the great things about Wellington Zoo is that they offer a ‘Close Encounter’ experience. You can have personal and private encounters between you, the zookeepers and giraffes, red pandas, capybaras, lemurs, meerkats, and cheetahs. It’s a great way to make your zoo trip even more memorable!
This is the website of Wellington Zoo: https://wellingtonzoo.com/
4. Orana Wildlife Park
Orana Wildlife Park is New Zealand’s only open zoo, covering over 80 hectares of land in Christchurch’s Garden City. This zoo was established to bring endangered species into an environment that resembles their natural habitat.
Did you know “Orana” is the Maori word for “hideout” – a perfect way to describe this fantastic park? Some extraordinary animals here, including the white rhinoceros, tiger, cheetah, giraffe, and New Zealand’s only gorillas.
The experience everyone is enamored with has to be the world-famous Lion Encounter. You’ll board a special cage cart, which will be taken into a lion sanctuary, where they’ll climb around the cage while being fed. It was an experience that was both terrifying and wonderful. And it will bring you respect for nature.
This is the website of Orana Wildlife Park: https://www.oranawildlifepark.co.nz/
5. Brooklands Zoo
Brooklands Zoo is a small zoo located in New Plymouth on the West Coast. Although this is not a huge zoo, I still decided to include it in this list because it is family-friendly, has a playground for children, and especially, free admission!
This zoo has many animals to socialize and enjoy, such as amphibians, reptiles, oriental small-clawed otters, meerkats, a brolga, Bolivian squirrel monkeys, and both capuchin monkeys and early tamarins cotton, as well as exotic parrots kept in free-flying aviaries.
This is the website of Brooklands Zoo: https://www.npdc.govt.nz/brooklands-zoo/
6. National Aquarium
If you’re tired of terrestrial animals, head to New Zealand’s National Aquarium. The National Aquarium houses one of the most extensive sets of aquatic animals. With a clever modern design, the National Aquarium will bring you closest to the life of deep-sea creatures.
The moving walking path is also great fun, where you can be mesmerized as it twists you along underneath the Oceanarium, and you feel like part of an underwater adventure.
This is the website of National Aquarium: https://www.nationalaquarium.co.nz/
7. Kiwi North
Suppose you’ve been to New Zealand without seeing the country’s iconic bird. So I will bring you a place that is Kiwi North. Based in the Northland city of Whangarei, Kiwi North has the only kiwi house in the region where you can watch them perform daily activities like foraging. It is also home to the oldest reptile, the tuatara, about 250 million years old.
The other great thing about Kiwi North is that it incorporates several other attractions like museums and heritage parks, filled with old buildings and monuments from years past.
This is the website of Kiwi North: https://www.kiwinorth.co.nz/
We hope you enjoy our picks for the best zoos and wildlife parks in New Zealand. Enjoy the beauty of New Zealand’s nature and wildlife!