Saigon Zoo and Botanical Gardens
Open everyday from 7:00 to 18:30
Ticket fee: 50.000 VND-children 30.000VND
2 Nguyen Binh Khiem, District 1
The Saigon Zoo and Botanical Garden, established in 1865, is Vietnam's largest zoo and botanical garden. Located on Nguyen Binh Khiem Street in District 1, T.P. in Ho Chi Minh City, it is home to over a hundred species of mammals, reptiles and birds, as well as many rare orchids and ornamental plants. It also contains the Museum of Vietnamese History, which houses 25,000 documents of history, culture and ethnography from the country's history and the culture and history of South Vietnam, and a monument to Vietnamese people who were killed in World War I. Ranked the eighth oldest zoo in the world, its other parts are divided into animal and plant conservation areas, an orchid garden and an amusement park.
On March 23, 1864, Admiral Pierre de la Grandière, commander of French forces in Cochinchina, commissioned the building of a zoo in Saigon. Veterinarian Louis Germain was named the director of the project on March 28, 1865,and construction of the Saigon Zoo and Botanical Garden started in area 12 hectares (30 acres) northeast of Thi Nghe Channel. The zoo occupied 20 hectares (49 acres) by the end of 1865. On February 17, 1869 (the National Day of France), the zoo opened to the public.
The Saigon Zoo has undergone many changes over the years. In 1927, a bridge across Thi Nghe Channel was built to connect sections of the zoo. In 1956, the Saigon government renamed the zoo Thao Cam Vien. In 1985, a stone jetty was built, and an electric wire was added to improve the zoo. Since 1989, the facilities have been updated to make the environment more suitable for its animals. The Saigon Zoo and Botanical Garden was recognized as a member of the Southeast Asian Zoological Association in 1990. The next year, the zoo's garden was re-established.
The zoo has received support from foreign countries. In 1993, the zoo director proposed a long-term plan, that came to a close in 2003, to improve the quality of management, housing, and care of the animals. After years of construction, it is now the largest zoo and botanical garden in the country.