My First Visit to Manila Zoo

I happened to see Manila Zoo while I was passing along M. Adriatico Street on my way to the Department of Foreign Affairs. “I must see this zoo”, I said during that moment. So, I went to Manila Zoo on the afternoon the next day to quench my curiosity.
Manila Zoo

What welcomed me was the stench of the place. The stinking smell is so great inside the zoo that I almost puke out my lunch a lot of times. I'm not certain but I think that the cages of the animals were not cleaned well that's why the whole place stinks.

How to Go To Manila Zoo

Manila Zoo is very accessible since it is located in the City of Manila. Commuters from Manila City Hall should ride a jeepney bound to Harrison Plaza. Another way to reach Manila Zoo is to ride the LRT-1 and go down the Quirino Station then ride a jeepney that are bound to Harrison Plaza. Please note that the LRT-Quirino Station is the LRT station that is nearest to Manila Zoo.
Location Map of Manila Zoo
Location map of Manila Zoo (source: Google Maps).

Manila Zoo Entrance Fee

Entrance gate of Manila Zoo

Entrance to Manila Zoo is not expensive. The entrance fee for adult visitor is 40 pesos while the entrance fee for children (4 ft and below) is just 20 pesos. Residents of Manila can enter Manila Zoo for only 20 pesos but they must show proof of their residency.

What You Can Do Inside Manila Zoo

Visitors to the zoo can do other things aside from looking at the caged animals. Manila Zoo has a canal, officially called as a lagoon, where visitors can ride a boat.
Boating in Manila Zoo
Boating on greenish waters of Manila Zoo.

Boat rental is 60 pesos. One boat can ride 5 persons at most. Boating on Manila Zoo is OK but the dirty water is a major turn-off. I suggest that you go to La Mesa Ecopark for a better boating experience.

Visitors can also take pictures with tamed birds at the Bird Photobooth. If the kids are tired of just looking at the animals then parents should bring them to the Kinder Zoo, which is also located inside Manila Zoo. Just for 200 pesos entrance fee, kids can pet snakes, birds and other animals.
Kinder Zoo in Manila Zoo

If you found the Kinder Zoo too expensive but still you want to touch some wild animals, your only option is the booth that allows you to touch snakes and mini-crocodiles for a lesser fee.
Pet the snakes and lizards in Manila Zoo

Horses are also available inside Manila Zoo. Visitors can ride a horse for 60 pesos.
Horses for rent in Manila Zoo
Horses for rent in Manila Zoo.

Feeding the animals is prohibited but many visitors doesn't care about this rule. I saw a visitor who was able to pet an ostrich because he lured it with food.
Americano playing with the turkey of Manila Zoo.
Americano playing with the ostrich of Manila Zoo.

Animals Inside the Manila Zoo

According to the Manila Zoo website, the zoo currently holds a total of 500 animals. The same website also said that the zoo has elephants, tigers, hippos and lions. The website is outdated, however, because there is no lion inside Manila Zoo during my visit. What I saw are some hippos, tigers and this lone elephant:
Lone elephant of Manila Zoo

Which reminds me of a scene in Madagascar 3 where the protagonist lion realized that the zoo is not his home. I think that elephant is sad because there is no other elephant inside the park. His cage is also small for an elephant and with floor of hard concrete. It's no wonder that a celebrity criticized the Manila Zoo management because of the elephant.

Tigers are plenty but they are too far away for me to get a decent photo.
Tiger of Manila Zoo

There is a weird horse striped like a zebra.
Quasi-zebra in Manila Zoo

A visitor beside me told his son that the animal is an old zebra that's why its stripe is fading. He is wrong. That animal is half-horse and half-zebra, which explains why the animal has weird stripe.

Manila Zoo has a separate area for reptiles. There are snakes, turtles and some lizards like these iguanas:
Iguana of Manila Zoo

There are crocodiles too, which might be the children of Lolong.
Children of Lolong at Manila Zoo

Manila Zoo also has plenty of birds noticeable of which is this peacock:
Poor peacock of Manila Zoo

I said that that bird is noticeable because of the poor condition of its tails. Peacocks are famous for their beautiful tail that looks like a big fan when spread. The peacocks in Manila Zoo has tails that are torn and ugly. The bird that caught my attention is this weird bird:
Cassowary of Manila Zoo

Wikipedia says that this bird is called a cassowary, which is common in Papua New Guinea. This bird has feathers that looks like hair. The elongation of its head is used as protection against falling fruits. It was also said that this bird is known for attacking humans when defending its territory.

I just stayed only for an hour inside Manila Zoo because I can't take the stench anymore. I walked away the zoo as fast as possible so I can breathe stench-free air. Manila Zoo is a good place for field trips and family outings. Just be prepared with the stench though. Don't go to this zoo if your child has asthma or other respiratory illness.

My Suggested Improvements for Manila Zoo

1. The first and very important improvement that Manila Zoo administrators should do is to clean up the cages and remove the stench. This will remove the health hazards for both zoo visitors and employees.

2. Another suggestion is the improvement of Manila Zoo's entrance gate. The gate that's currently in use is not enough to control the crowd. Centaman Entrance Control will surely have the perfect product for the zoo's entrance gate.

3. My last suggestion would be an improvement to animal care. It is saddening to see the peacock with torn tail. Mali the elephant, on the other hand, is ailing. It will be best if the zoo will hire veterinarians and professionals who are experts in animal care.

There were reports that Manila City government has plans in improving the zoo. I hope that the improvement that they're planning includes the suggestion that I listed here.

Leave a comment with Facebook or regular comment box below.


  1. you know what Ish... the last time ata na nakapunta ako dito eh nung kindergarten pa ako... and it was not like this before... that was way far better than the current condition ng manila zoo... nakakaawa naman yung peacock
    thanks for sharing Ish.. haha parang gusto ko ulit tuloy pumunta jan

  2. sadly it was labeled as one of the diritest zoo ong earth

  3. Bluedreamer

    Yup. Kawawa nga 'yung peacock. Hope the City Government of Manila improve the place.


    Yeah. That is sad indeed.

  4. to be there when i was a kid was a dream come true. It's sad to see it this way.

  5. how sad. i saw manila zoo in the 70s and it had lots and lots of species. go to montalban instead and see avilon zoo. manila zoo used to have so many lions, a black bear, more than a dozen species of monkeys, kangaroos, and many many more. exotic big cats like panther, etc.

    btw that's maybe a zebronkey, zebra + donkey. and that's not a turkey. prolly emu or ostrich. i know my birds hehe

  6. Resty

    Black bear? Kangaroo? Panther? Wow! There are so many animals back then in the Manila Zoo. It is unfortunate that I didn't saw those animals. Seems like the Manila Zoo management has no enough funds to manage this zoo.

    Yeah, it is possible that it is a zebronkey. I agree with you that the bird is not a turkey. Possibly an ostrich. Thanks for the corection. ^_^

  7. :D that's lots of animals. i think they should include lots of fish in there too

    Latest: Arabic For You!

  8. No fish Fishiee. Manila Zoo deosn't have any aquarium. You can go to Manila Ocean Park just to see many fishes. ^_^

  9. Kaawa awa yung Manila Zoo natin. So sad. =(

  10. Tin

    Needs further improvements ika nga.

  11. Totoo yan! mabaho nga saka di nila masyado nalilinis kapaligiran. Yung ibang hayop kawawa yung lagay nila. Sayang nga at napabayaan.

  12. Hey there hope you don't mind checking my blog today I just have something for you
    happy blogging and have a great day

  13. Anney

    Sana nga mabawasan 'yung mabahong amoy sa Manila Zoo para naman magandang puntahan.


    Wow! Thanks MeCoy.

  14. Very nice zoo, you have there!!! Oh noooo!!!! I wouldn't go near the snakes and the crocodiles, never mind even if they are small. LOL!!!

  15. I think the zoo is not well managed. They should clean up the place and get rid of the stinking smell!

  16. Yeah I noticed most people ignore the "Don't Feed The Animals" rules. The thing is, no one is there to stop them, so I guess it's not that important? : D

  17. Half horse half zebra? A zebra horse? How did the zoo created this hybrid animal? LOL!

  18. Oh! Look at the poor peacock, its feathers all torn and old. What a shame.

  19. Suitapui

    Ha ha. Don't worry about the crocodiles and the snakes. Manila Zoo personnel always feed them so they will never be hungry. They will just ignore you.


    Yes. They should make a serious general cleaning. Removing the stink will not only be good for the visitors but also for the zoo personnel and the animals as well.

    Many people are stubborn that's why the "Don't Feed the Animals" rule is ignored. That rule is important because the food that visitors give to the animals are chips that may not be healthy for the zoo animals.

    How did created a half-zebra half-horse? They made a zebra and horse mate. :-P

    Yes, it sad that the peacock's tail is torn. The condition of its cage is not good.

    Ha ha ha. No panda here Foong. Sorry.

  20. i hope its really worth a visit i remembered going here when i was still a kid and now i have 3 kids =) so you saw the controversial elephant. I dont see any problem keeping these anmals in a cage as long as they are well taken cared of

  21. I've been to Manila Zoo when I was young..guess I have forgotten what it looks like! Thanks to your post, I got the chance to see the zoo again!

  22. I want to go in Manila Zoo but I think Avilon Zoo and Zoobic Safari is much better.

  23. Funny, how I've been to different zoos outside of the Philippines but never Manila Zoo. Thanks to your post, I was finally able to see it without the usual stench.

  24. this is too sad to know...It's been years na rin since I last visited the place. Hope the gov't will find time to take care of these animals...

  25. Been hearing a lot of bad things about Manila Zoo. Too bad I have not been here too

  26. never been there actually :) but I would love to!

  27. Manila has been one of the usual field trip sites for school children but I believe it can benefit from sprucing up to encourage more visitors.

  28. WAAAAAA i always visit Manila on a regular basis but never Manila Zoo. Toinks. Must include this on my future MNL trip

  29. SIguro kung hindi sa gobyerno ang Manila zoo siguro mas okay okay pa ang buhay ng mga haup na yan sa zoo.

  30. Thanks for posting about Manila Zoo. I haven't been here since I was very young. I feel bad for the lonely elephant and the peacocks. :(

  31. I wonder what that Zebra like horse like lion is?! Better get a visit to know. great! Informative!!

  32. Lizelice

    The cage is OK but I think that a Safari style zoo, where the visitors are ones who are caged and not the animals, are much better.


    You are welcome.

    Jon Diesta

    Avilon Zoo and Zoobic Safari are much better indeed.

    Franc Ramon

    Ha ha. You were spared of the stench.


    Yeah. I hope the current issue with regards Mali, the elephant, will motivate the Manila Zoo management to improve the place.

    Juanderful Pinoy

    Visit the Manila Zoo some time in the future.


    Yes. Visit the zoo.

    Teresa Martinez

    Improvement of Manila Zoo should be prioritized for the sake of school children who visit during field trips.


    Oh...then you must visit Manila Zoo in your next visit to Manila.

    Ralph Marcuss

    Yeah. Malamang nga na may improvement 'yung Manila Zoo kapag private sector ang may hawak. Ang consequece lang ay magmamahal ang entrance fee.

    Unsugarcoated Reviews

    The condition of the elephant and peacock is the thing that visitors of the zoo should be sad about.

    Philip Roman

    Thank you for dropping by my blog.

  33. I really hope the Philippines invest on our local zoos... other countries use their zoos to attract tourist.. why should we not do the same

  34. I've ever been to manila zoo yet, I've only seen it on TV...

  35. i couldn't remember my first and last visit to manila zoo.. in fact i am not even sure if I had visited manila zoo before.. but i want to see that half horse half zebra :)

  36. I'm glad Manila Zoo is still being maintained.

    Cooking Like a Pro

  37. never been there :(

  38. Been here when I was in my elementary years..di pa ulit naulit. Will try to visit this..mukhang okay pa naman ang zoo :)

  39. It's been 17 years since I've visited Manila Zoo.

    My German husband came to meet my parents, and I thought it would be fun to show him the zoo since at that time I could not even remember my own first visit. I think, my parent's brought me there as I was a little child, and I no longer have a recollection of my visit.

    You took great images, but I have to say it does not jog my memory of our visit!

    Very sorry that you had to injure the stench of the zoo, though. It's sad if they don't clean where the animals dwell.

  40. I think I was in grade 1 when I visited Manila Zoo (that was more than 25 years ago). Good thing the zoo was kept clean. ^_^

  41. I had seen Manila for the first time last week, it was an experience to witness the different species in this area.


Comments are very much welcome. However, I reserve the right to delete comments that contains spam.

Also drop by my other blog: Ahab Reviews and Tips - my tips and reviews blog.