Belfast Zoo

Belfast Zoo occupies a 55 acre site about a 15 minute drive north of Belfast city centre and is a must for a family fun day out, if you are visiting Northern Ireland. Belfast Zoo houses over 140 species of animals, many of which are now endangered in their natural habitat.

Belfast Zoo was originally opened in 1934 and it suffered some decline during the Second World War and in 1974 work was begun on the new modern zoo which was built and supported by Belfast City Council who provide £1.5 m per annum to help run and promote the zoo. Like most modern zoos, Belfast Zoo has an active programme of education and conservation through its various breeding programmes.

Facilities at Belfast Zoo include a café, souvenir shop and toilets. There are baby changing facilities and mobility scooters for hire (however please check with zoo prior to your visit for further information by phoning 028 90776277 ext 201).

Being about half the size of Dublin Zoo, Belfast Zoo is well laid out with various walks but be prepared it is sited on a reasonably steep hill which may pose problems for some visitors.

"Belfast Zoo on the Antrim road"

Visiting Belfast Zoo

It is well worth taking sometime to plan your visit to Belfast Zoo prior to your arriving there. There are various different walks laid out through the Zoo highlighting different animals, such as the Monkey Walk, the Elephant and Giraffe Walk and the Hill Walk. The Lake Walk will enable families with younger kids to see the farm animals and also visit the play park.
Drop into the Rainforest House which allows visitors to walk through a tropical environment at a balmy constant 27 degrees to view sloths, fruit bats, whistling ducks and a laughing thrush! The Bird Park houses plenty of exotic birds.

Are you barmy about bears, potty about penguins or mad about monkeys? Then make sure you see your favourite animal at feeding time or at one of the Zoos talks.

Adventurers’ can jump on board to cross crocodile creek, tunnel through meerk at mound or slither to snake island at the zoo’s play area, the Adventurers’ Learning Centre.

The Belfast Zoo boasts two café’s offering a range of hot and cold food, snacks and drinks. The Lion’s Den Restaurant and The Treetop Tearoom provide a variety of food and stunning views. They can also organise a picnic lunch for you with perfect views over Belfast from the picnic areas.

Thanks to a successful European breeding programme, the zoo is home to a large herd of Rothchild’s giraffes. The Rainforest House is a walk-through exhibition with tropical landscaping and a constant temperature of 27 degrees.

Belfast Zoo Opening Hours

  • Summer – 3rd April to 1st October   Open 10am – 6pm (last entry 4.30pm).
  • Winter – 2nd October to 2nd April  Open 10am – 4pm (last entry 2.30pm).

Belfast Zoo Admission Prices

Booking Online – You can book online here through the booking link directly to the Belfast Zoo


"Belfast Zoo"

Family Fun Tip for Visiting Belfast Zoo

Car parking is available at the zoo, but it can get full by late morning during busy periods. If you are planning to visit when it is likely to be busy and if you are not going to arrive early, it might be an idea to call Belfast Zoo beforehand for advice on alternative car parking. The number is 028 9077 6277 ext 201

Directions To Belfast Zoo

  • By Car
Belfast Zoo is located on the Antrim Road, off the M2.Coming from the South on the M1, follow signs for the M2 over the West link. Exit the M2 at junction 2 and the zoo is signposted from here.
From Belfast City Centre follow signs for M2. Exit the M2 at junction 2 and the zoo is signposted from here.
Parking: there is parking for approximately 400 cars at the zoo car park. During busy periods the car parks can be full by late morning. For information on alternative car parking contact the zoo before you visit.
  • By Bus
From Donegal Square West in Belfast City take any of the following Metro services
1A, 1B, 1C, 1D, 1E, 1F, 1G or 2A for Antrim Road or Bellevue. The zoo visitor centre is about a 500 metre walk uphill from the bus stop.
  • By Train

The nearest train station is Whiteabbey Station and that is about 3 miles from the zoo

Support The Belfast Zoo

There are lots of ways you can show your support for Belfast Zoo. These include:

  • adopting an animal
  • joining Friends of the zoo
  • becoming a member of Belfast Zoo
  • taking part in our Keeper for a Day programme
  • exploring our corporate partnership opportunities

Assisting the zoo in this way helps them care for the animals and continue their important conservation work.The growth in human population and changes to the environment means the danger to animals is even greater than before.

"Belfast Zoo Online Booking"