Journey to the Jungle

Today we went back to Khao Kheow Open Zoo in Chonburi Province. I was there last year with Nong Grace (click here for pictures) and as she liked it so much she kept asking me to go again. It is the school summer holidays in Thailand now so we thought we would drive down there today. The zoo is not well-known among foreigners as it is not in any of the guidebooks. But it is an easy day trip from either Bangkok or Pattaya. There isn’t any direct public transport to get there but you can either rent a taxi for the day or join a tour. From Bangkok it took us less than 90 minutes to drive there.

Compared to Safari World, we found Khao Kheow Open Zoo good value for money. Although there is a two price system, they are very open about it and the difference is marginal. In fact, without really asking, they just gave me the Thai price and Nong Grace got in for free again. Thai people are 70 baht and foreigners 100 baht. The full ticket price for Safari World is something like 700 baht. The cost of buying the food for the animals was also reasonable compared to Safari World. And at the restaurant they gave us a large plate of food for only 25 baht. I felt we were well looked after. Though, at the elephant enclosure, I saw them charging three Russian tourists 800 baht for an elephant ride when they had only charged us 150 baht for two people.

Since our last visit, they have opened a new show called “Journey to the Jungle”. As usual in Thailand, they labelled this a world class exhibit. You have to pay extra for this. It is 50 baht for Thai people and 100 baht for foreigners. They show Arabic numbers for both prices so you know that you are paying more. But they gave me Thai price without an argument after I politely asked. The aim of the show is to give you an impression of jungle life without actually going to Africa. The commentary was in both Thai and English. That was nice of them to do that, however, I had a hard time understanding much of it. It was also very stage managed, with different animals coming on to do an “act” and then left as if on cue.

The highlight of the show were the tigers who clambered up a tree to grab some meat and then later dived into the pool to have a swim. If you go to this show, I would advise you to sit on the lefthand side facing the stage. Your view won’t be blocked so much by the gates. If you sit more at the back then you can look over the gates a bit better. Though you won’t see the tigers swimming in the water tank at the bottom. I took the above picture after the show was over. I went down to the bottom to get a closer view. The admission price of 50 baht wasn’t bad, but I think 100 baht would be pushing it a bit. The ending was a bit of an anti-climax. As usual, I have marked this on Google Maps. Come back to soon for more ideas of places to go with Kids in Bangkok and the surrounding area.

2 responses to “Journey to the Jungle