Jerusalem Biblical Zoo
Biblical Zoo Jerusaelm
Popularly known as the Biblical Zoo, the Tisch Family Zoological Gardens in southern Jerusalem is not only a place to see animals.
Sprawled over 250 dunams (about 62 acres), the popular Jerusalem zoo features a learning center, train, lakes, sculpture park, children’s zoo, art gallery, and cafeteria.
The Jerusalem Biblical Zoo is one-of-a-kind in the world for being home to a collection of animals mentioned in the Bible – many now absent from the contemporary Israeli landscape. You can spend an entire day there with the whole family and never tire of the wide array of fascinating animals.
If you’re coming from Tel Aviv or Beit Shemesh you can even get there by train – the Jerusalem Zoo has its very own train stop.
The Biblical Zoo is also beautifully landscaped; its various sections are designed to blend into the landscape while allowing maximum space for the animals to wander.
On weekdays (Sunday-Thursday) a Zoo Train can take you around if you are too tired to walk the long distances. Catch the train on the lower level near the squirrel monkey exhibit and stay on for all four stations, or get off at the bear exhibit and see the rest of the zoo under your own steam.
Biblical Zoo Jerusalem prides itself on bringing together all of Jerusalem’s populations – Jews, Arabs, religious, and secular – to learn about the animals, value the animal kingdom, and develop an awareness of the vital need for conservation.
Biblical Zoo Activities
The Biblical Zoo offers a variety of activities for every season. During the summer, there are night tours, sunrise and sunset tours, and even Wake Up With the Birds tours. Suitable for ages 5 and up, the tours are 2-3 hours long and are not included in the general price of admission. Tours in English are available with advance notice and a minimum number of participants.
Another unique feature of the Jerusalem Biblical Zoo is the popular Noah’s Ark Visitor Center. You can find the imposing ark-shaped center at the far end of the Wildlife preserve. From here you can see the African Savannah exhibit, one of the most popular sections of the zoo, with its graceful giraffes and hulking hippos.
Not far from the Vistor Center is the Bible Land Wildlife Preserve where ibex, gazelle, and wild sheep roam freely.
Don’t miss the ecological maze or the underground world exhibit, where nocturnal animals and some scary creepy-crawlies, including scorpions and cockroaches, are housed.
There are plenty of pleasant places to sit and take a break when the action gets too much. A favorite spot for families is the Noah’s Ark Sculpture Park and the waterfowl lake. Both are close to restrooms and refreshment kiosks, and if you close your eyes and tune in to the sounds of the wildlife, you can imagine yourself back in the Biblical landscape.
Jerusalem Biblical Zoo Trivia: Did You Know?
In ancient Israel, lions, bears and cheetahs roamed the land.