I arrived in Leipzig late Friday night, and I didn't do anything except get dinner somewhere. On the following Saturday morning, after waking up and getting some breakfast along the way, I headed out to the Leipzig Zoo. Somehow I wanted to feel like a kid again, and the zoo is one of the best ways to make that happen.
Leipzig Zoo is massive, and I arrived a few moments after it opened, so it wasn't crowded yet when I was there. I got a map, and slowly explored its expansive grounds. Leipzig Zoo is actually one of the best zoos in Europe, first opened in 1878, and has about 27 hectares and 850 species.
One of the most amazing features of this zoo is Gondwanaland, which is actually the world's second largest indoor rainforest hall. It's essentially a greenhouse with a controlled temperature and weather inside, allowing for the survival of tropical plants and animals within. It's huge enough to have a river system inside, which you can also explore if you want using a canoe. The photos I have above are all from Gondwanaland, showing the animals that are typically found in the tropics, but can survive here in temperate Europe, because of this amazing enclosure.
I also enjoyed the elephant temple with its outdoor and indoor sections.
And of course, there are plenty of other animals, living in wide open spaces. One thing that really impressed me is the amount of space the animals have. The big cats could run and dash if they wanted to. The rhinos have wide spaces to graze if they want to. The animals don't seem compressed at all. Of course, one disadvantage to this is that they can be hard to spot by the visitors especially if they're somewhere else that is far, but at least where they live mirrors more what they are used to in the wild.
I spent the whole morning here, and I definitely enjoyed my stay. It is recommended for families, but for solo adults visiting, it's also great too. It felt like I was a kid again, being amazed at every turn I made seeing these interesting creatures.