At Yalou, Po Box 38, Spata, Athens, Greece
21 0663 4724
NileGuide Expert tip:
The zoo is very near the airport. You can easily fit it in before a mid-afternoon to early evening flight by arranging a private transfer with a taxi or minibus.
For a zoo that is only ten years old, Greece's first and only zoo sure has made a name for itself. Started by a Frenchman, Jean-Jacques Lesueur, the park's first claim to fame was their bird collection, the third largest in the world. Year by year it has grown into two thousand varieties of birds living in walk-in aviaries, a reptile house, fauna from four continents including brown bears, white tigers, giraffes, monkeys, lions, hippos, free-range rabbits, a petting zoo, an upcoming dinosaur park and aquarium of "international stature," and the newly installed dolphinarium, the only one of its kind in Greece.
Four dolphins and two sea lions are some of the latest addition to the park and are currently being trained for special shows that will take place in the near future. For now they're being studied by researchers working with the Catalonian Polytechnic and the SaveWave company, both working to better understand the dolphins' auditory perception as well as possible therapeutic relationships between dolphins and children with autism.
Educational presentations in the dolphinarium are offered two to three times a day for an extra three euros on top of the park's admission. Check their website or call for exact hours as they change seasonally.
Necessary information on the park
9am to sunset, 365 days a year.
Presentation hours for the dolphinarium from 31/10/2010 until 26/03/2011
Weekdays 11:30 and 15:30
Saturday 11:00 13:30 15:30
Sunday and holidays (06/01/2011, 07/03/2011, 25/03/2011) 11:00 12:30 14:00 15:30
Adults: € 15
Children under three and the disabled are offered free admission.
Children until the age of twelve get a discounted rate of € 11.
Groups of twenty-five or more are also offered the discounted rate.
Family passes are offered at €48 and for two adults + two children
€58 for two adults + three children.
*There are places to buy sandwiches, drinks and tiropita (cheese pies) as well as welcoming picnic places for something that you brought along with you.