Are you going to or already in Saigon and want to know how a visit to the zoo looks like?
This article shows you the possibilities of this wonderful place.
It is not just a zoo or a botanical garden, it has much more than that to offer you.
Keep reading to know what they have to offer you.

The front entrance of Saigon Zoo and Botanical Garden

Location

The address is 2 Nguyen Binh Khiem Street, Ben Nghe Ward, District 1, Ho Chi Minh City.
I ordered a Grab Bike to get there.
The advantage of using Grab is to enter the address and check the destination before booking.
In the vibrant busy Ho Chi Minh City, it is such a great relief to be in nature.
Although the location is in the city, with over 1800 trees and many different plants it is relaxing.
The entrance fee is 50.000 VND for adults and children over 1.30 m.
After paying the tickets, I slipped the ticket in one of the gates to be able to enter the zoo.
It was useful to get a paper map, which can be found behind the gates after entering.

A paper map of the zoo

Animals

There was a variety of animals, but no pandas (in case you want to see a panda).
Besides the wildlife animals like elephants, tigers, giraffes, etc, they also had pet farm animals.
Some pet farm animals you might encounter are goats, ponies, peacocks, and lamas.
Although the latter is not really a pet farm animal, they were located next to the ponies.
There was also a butterflies house, with lots of plants and flowers inside it.
It was a pity though to see some dead butterflies on the ground.
You need to be careful while walking, to not to step on one accidentally, as they fly freely here.

Peacock showing off and a lizard trying to get to the other side of the gate

Beautiful nature

I’d like to emphasize, even if you are not a big fan of seeing animals, it is still a nice place to go.
If you stay for instance a week or longer in Saigon, you might desire to escape the city.
To not go too far, then this is a good option to go and enjoy some nature.
“The plant collection comprises of 3000 trees, many of which are over 100 years old.
There are also different species of cacti, orchid, and bonsai of high values.”
(A quote from the leaflet)

This zoo is for me a big park, as parks are quite rare to find here in Saigon.
I went to a “park” before, which was a square filled with grass fields, trees, and some benches.
While the traffic was actively busy zooming around, clearly visible and audible.

The zoo had furthermore a fountain and two temples.
It had enough space to walk around freely without continuously being surrounded by people.
I visited it on a Saturday morning, around 10:30 am.
Not annoyingly busy, there were some people but not overwhelming.

A temple in the zoo

Train rides and amusement rides

If you don’t want to walk and like to have a tour of the zoo, then the train is a good option.
This was a paid service. I did not take the train so I cannot write much about the ride.

There were two locations within the zoo with amusement rides.
These were also paid attractions.
To mention a few attractions: a Ferris wheel (not a very high one), drop tower and carousel.

Another entertainment option, which was a free one, was the performing arts theater show.
When I was passing by, a lady was just performing a balancing stunt.
The music from the show was for me unnecessarily too loud though.
Even the elephants further on could hear the music.
One of them was even dancing on the music 🙂

The left elephant was dancing on the music; swinging his body, tail, and head to the left and right while flapping his ears.

There is even a mini waterpark in the zoo.
I did not go there, so will not further elaborate on it.
There were plenty of toilets to go to and many places were selling food within the zoo.

Rubik Zoo

A little bit further on next to the area of African animals was a pointing sign with Zoo cafe.
After having enough of the zoo, as I had visited almost everything, I went there.
The place is called the Rubik Zoo.
Not sure if from there you can enter back the zoo though, it was not really part of the zoo’s map.
It was a very nice place to visit.
You can go do some shopping, has a food court, a free cinema, and massage chairs.

Food court at Rubik Zoo and people sitting on “chairs” to watch movies

Especially the food court I like, this concept can be mainly found in Asia.
At the stalls, they were mainly serving street foods and cold drinks.
I bought one big apple tea drink.

A free cinema meant running Vietnamese movies on a big projector screen.

There are several massage chairs from the company Gintell, called Rest N Go stations.
I tried a massage chair for 30 minutes, costing 50.000 VND (1,91 euro / 3,01 AUD / 2,15 USD).
Other durations were 6 min. (10.000 VND), 12 min. (20.000 VND) and 60 min. (100.000 VND).

I did not come across a zoo with such a variety of things to see and do.
Having Rubik Zoo next to it; makes it even richer.
I definitely think it is worth to have a visit.
For parents with kids, couples, solo travelers, for everyone, there is something interesting.


Massage chairs strategically placed in front of the projector screen

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