Cologne Tickets

Exploring Cologne zoo: A journey through diverse habitats

Cologne Zoo is among Germany's oldest zoological gardens. It covers more than 20 hectares and houses over 10,000 animals, showcasing around 800 diverse species. Here, you will see exotic mammals, colorful birds, fascinating reptiles, and vibrant a...

Also Known As

Koeln Zoo/Cologne Zoological Garden

Founded On


Quick information


Riehler Str. 173, 50735 Köln, Germany


3 hours






30-60 mins (Peak), 0-30 mins (Off Peak)

Did you know?

The zoo's Elephant Park is one of Europe's largest and most advanced elephant enclosures.

Besides its diverse animal exhibits, the zoo boasts a stunning collection of plant life, making it a paradise for plant lovers and botany enthusiasts.

Koelner Zoo has become the first zoo in Germany to use sustainably sourced fish with the MSC seal. Both zoo visitors and the animals, including sea lions and penguins, can enjoy dishes made with MSC-certified herring and mackerel. The zoo's restaurants now feature these sustainable seafood options, ensuring an eco-friendly dining experience for everyone.

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Cologne Zoo and Aquarium Entry Tickets
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Combo (Save 5%): Cologne Zoo + 1-Hour Panorama Cologne Cruise with Audio Guide
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Up close with exotic wildlife: Discover the animals of Cologne Zoo


Step into the African floodplains at Hippodom, where you will encounter hippos, Nile crocodiles, antelopes, and various bird species. This spacious replica of an African river landscape lets you see the hidden African habitat up close.

Elephant Park

Home to Asian elephants, the Elephant Park sprawls across 20,000 square meters, making it the largest and most modern elephant park north of the Alps. You can observe these majestic creatures living in their natural family groups without direct contact with caretakers.


Clemenshof is a charming farm habitat preserving endangered heritage breeds. Experience the beauty of rural life as you encounter free-roaming chickens, pigs, cows, and sheep. Learn about their significance in agriculture and the efforts to protect them from extinction.


Dive into the depths of aquatic ecosystems, from the Rhine River to the Indo-Pacific coral reefs, at the Cologne Aquarium. Explore over 70 aquariums showcasing a diverse array of marine life, including colorful fish, corals, piranhas, and exotic crustaceans.


Explore the exotic habitats at the Terrarium, where around 60 enclosures house amphibians, reptiles, and endangered species like the Philippine crocodile. You'll also see vibrant poison dart frogs, camouflaged chameleons, and slithering snakes in this fascinating exhibit.

Rainforest House

Immerse yourself in a slice of Southeast Asian rainforest at the Rainforest House, where vibrant birds, rare lizards, and flying foxes roam freely amidst lush vegetation. Explore 2,000 square meters of tropical paradise, teeming with life and biodiversity.

Baboon Rock

Observe the dynamic social interactions of baboons at Baboon Rock, a protected natural site within the Koeln Zoo. Marvel at nearly 50 baboons as they navigate their rocky habitat, offering a glimpse into the complexities of primate behavior.


Enter the world of small mammals at the Meerkat domicile, where South African meerkats and North American raccoons frolic and play. Witness these lively creatures dig, observe, and interact in a spacious habitat designed for their enjoyment.

Jungle House

Enter the lush realm of the Jungle House, where nine endangered monkey species swing from branch to branch in their natural habitat. Opened in 1985, this sprawling enclosure offers ample space for these primates to roam freely and thrive in their family groups.

Madagascar House

Step right into the heart of the beloved Madagascar universe! Here, you'll encounter the charismatic lemurs, ruled by none other than a certain King Julien himself. And don't forget to keep an eye out for the camouflaging chameleons blending seamlessly into their surroundings.

Unique experiences and activities at Cologne Zoo

Visit the petting enclosure

Experience the joy of hands-on interaction with farm animals at the petting enclosure, open on weekends for a tactile wildlife experience. Get up close with friendly creatures, from cuddly rabbits to gentle goats, for an incredible experience. This activity inside the Koelner Zoo is especially popular among the kids.

See feeding shows

Watch animals enjoy their meals during the fascinating feeding shows, from the playful penguins to the majestic sea lions and the thrilling piranhas. Don't miss the 'culinary charades' on Baboon Rock or the meerkats' hunt for treats, offering a fun and educational glimpse into the animals' daily routines.

Gain insights into nature conservation.

Visit the conservation area to learn about Cologne Zoo's efforts in preserving wildlife. Discover newly found amphibian and reptile species from Vietnam and see rare frogs and salamanders up close in the specially designed breeding area. It's an inspiring way to understand and support global conservation efforts.

See the stunning air show

Marvel at the spectacular aerial displays of birds, where black kites and bald eagles demonstrate their agility and wingspan. Please note that the Air Show may be canceled during poor weather conditions for the safety of both visitors and birds. Listen to loudspeaker announcements or check the notice board for updates.

Navigating the Cologne Zoo

Cologne Zoo spans across 20 hectares of beautifully landscaped grounds, featuring lush gardens, winding pathways, and picturesque animal enclosures. The layout is designed to provide an easy navigation experience, allowing visitors to explore different regions of the world without leaving the city.

Visitors can navigate the zoo easily using the provided map, which outlines the various exhibits, rest areas, and dining options available throughout the premises. 

Koelner zoo over the year: A brief history

  • Cologne Zoo, founded in 1860, was inspired by the successful models of Antwerp and Amsterdam Zoos. Its early years boasted an impressive collection of 455 different animal species, thanks to generous contributions from German ambassadors and supporters worldwide.
  • Throughout its history, Cologne Zoo has witnessed significant milestones and developments, contributing to the advancement of zoology.
  • Key milestones over the years have included the expansion of habitats to provide more naturalistic environments for the animals, as well as the implementation of conservation initiatives aimed at preserving biodiversity.
  • Moreover, the zoo has played a pivotal role in advancing zoological research and education. Its contributions to conservation efforts, the introduction of innovative animal care techniques, and the study of endangered species have earned it international acclaim.

Cologne Zoo today

Today, Cologne Zoo has become a premier destination for wildlife enthusiasts and families, offering an exciting experience amidst lush greenery and captivating animal exhibits. Home to over 10,000 animals representing more than 850 species, visitors can embark on a global journey through diverse habitats, from the African savannah to the depths of the Amazon rainforest.

Cologne Zoo stands out for its dedication to animal welfare and conservation efforts. It's not just a place to admire animals; it's a learning center too. They offer engaging talks, tours, and interactive sessions suitable for everyone, from kids to adults. From wandering through beautiful gardens to discovering rare species, a trip to Cologne Zoo guarantees an enriching and memorable adventure.

Frequently asked questions about Cologne Zoo

What animals can I expect to see at Cologne Zoo?

At Cologne Zoo, you'll encounter a wide range of animals, including elephants, hippos, crocodiles, baboons, and penguins. The zoo features specialized areas like the Rainforest House and the Aquarium, showcasing exotic reptiles, amphibians, and marine life. Whether you're interested in mammals, birds, or fish, there's something for everyone.

Are there activities for children or families?

Yes, Cologne Zoo offers numerous activities for children and families. Highlights include the petting zoo, playgrounds, and daily animal feedings.

What makes this zoo unique?

Cologne Zoo stands out for its commitment to conservation and exhibits like the Hippodom, which recreates an African river habitat. The zoo also participates in international breeding programs for endangered species, making it a leader in wildlife preservation.

Is there a best time of year to visit?

Cologne Zoo is a great place to visit any time of the year, but it shines in the spring and summer. The weather is perfect, daylight lasts longer, and you'll see more animals out and about in their outdoor habitats. These seasons bring the zoo to life, making it an especially enjoyable experience for visitors.

Are there any special attractions or shows at Cologne Zoo?

Yes, Cologne Zoo offers several daily feeding shows that are popular with visitors. You can see feeding shows of penguins, sea lions, baboons, hippos, and more. There's also a special show for bird of prey demonstrations where exotic birds show off their aerial skills.

Can I pet animals inside the Cologne Zoo?

Yes, you can interact with animals inside the petting enclosure. This area is designed for close encounters with friendly farm animals, making it a delightful experience for children and adults.

What languages are spoken by the staff at Cologne Zoo?

The staff at Cologne Zoo primarily speak German, but many also speak English. Information signs and brochures are available in multiple languages to accommodate international visitors.

Are there any prohibited items?

Prohibited items at Cologne Zoo include balls, frisbees, balloons, drones, scooters, bicycles, roller skates, and skateboards. These restrictions are in place to ensure the safety and comfort of both animals and visitors.

How long does it take to visit Cologne Zoo?

A visit to Cologne Zoo usually lasts 3 to 4 hours, but there's enough to see and do to fill an entire day. Take your time exploring the exhibits, catching the shows, and enjoying the zoo's amenities based on your interests and time availability.

Is there a specific path or recommended route to follow inside for the best experience?

There's no set route, but you can pick up a map at the entrance to plan your visit based on the animals and activities you want to see, ensuring a flexible and personalized experience.