If you take the train from Rotterdam Central in the direction of Utrecht, you are bound to notice this strangely shaped building that seems to shoot up to the sky. I must have seen that building so many times yet every time I would wonder: What is that?
Many, many train rides later, going in and out of Rotterdam, I finally found out the answer: it’s the ‘hang out’ place for giraffes in the Rotterdam Zoo. This garden of animals - the literal English translation of the Dutch term for Zoo - does justice to what you can discover inside.
Opened over one and a half centuries ago (in 1857 to be exact), the Rotterdam Zoo was designed by Sybold van Ravesteyn - the very same architect who designed the old Rotterdam train station. It hosts over 700 different species of animals, among which many, many types of butterflies – a true oasis of animals in the big city!
And if numbers do not impress you, then the new Amazonica might! It’s an amazing mixture of interesting architecture and nature. You suddenly find yourself within this dome-shaped building, walking around water lilies and being surprised by many colorful butterflies.
If you are really lucky, they might even stop to catch their breath on your shoulder. It’s like you are not in Rotterdam anymore! But don’t take my word for it; let the photos show you a tiny part of what the Rotterdam Zoo has to offer.
It’s the perfect place to escape the busy vibe of the big city, particularly on a sunny day! Growing up in a relatively small city, I was definitely impressed with the Rotterdam Zoo and you will probably be as well. One practical piece of advice: make sure to spend at least 4 hours there, preferably in the afternoon when the sunset light settles in.
Opening times and prices are here.
- Laura -