July 2 and 16
On a few special days during the summer months Amsterdam’s Royal Artis Zoo opens its doors until sunset (around 22:30). During these extended opening hours, not only do you get to the see the animals bedding down for the night during special tours (including the dramatic flock of shocking pink flamingos lit by the sunset), but you get a whole host of other entertainment for free.
Live bands, artists, children’s theatre shows, make-up artists and performers are among the items on the agenda in July. If you don’t have your own picnic with you, there are market stalls dotted around the zoo selling, tapas type snacks, fresh bread, prosecco, wine, soft drinks and more. For the children there’s a special bag of goodies available. So simply find a place under the trees or on a bench, watch the sunset, and enjoy your picnic to the sound of the jungle, aquarium, desert….
The Amsterdam Artis Zoo, which first opened in 1838, is located just a few minutes walk outside of the central district of Amsterdam in the historical Plantage Jewish neighborhood. Adult entrance costs around Euro 19. While you’re in the neighborhood, the botanical gardens (which have a great cafe) are also well worth a visit, as well as a stroll through the old dock warehouses, called the Entrepotdok, which are now converted into apartments.