Though we often take for granted the privilege of seeing any animal whenever we may please through photos and videos online, seeing wild animals in real-life on a nostalgic day trip to your local zoo is an irreplaceable experience.

Here is a list of the top 5 zoos you should visit in South Korea!

1. Everland Zootopia | Yongin-si, Gyeonggi-do

Everland is South Korea’s largest amusement park. In addition to its enormous outdoor theme park and massive indoor and outdoor water park, Everland’s Zootopia also houses the nation’s only panda bears, which were given to Korea as a gesture of friendship from Chinese President Xi Jinping  in 2016.

Zootopia spans over 15,000㎡ and exhibits 2,000 animals from over 201 different species. Its Lost Valley Safari Adventure, open to the public since 2013, features a specialized convertible amphibian vehicle that can move from water to land through a route where you can see up to 150 different animal species roaming freely.

2. Samjung The Park | Busanjin-gu, Busan

Samjung The Park is Busan’s only zoo and home to more than 1,200 different animals. Samjung is divided into two sections: the “Walking Safari,” where you can witness larger animals, and the “Sky-Ranch,” which hosts smaller creatures such as wild reptiles, a variety of birds, and farm animals.

The grounds are smaller than what you may experience at bigger locations, but the environment is well laid out and perfect for families with young children.

3. Seoul Grand Zoo | Gwacheon-si, Gyeonggi-do

Seoul Grand Zoo is the biggest zoo in South Korea. Open to the public since 1984, Seoul Grand Zoo is a part of Seoul Grand Park and includes an amusement park, a museum of modern art, a rose garden, and a separate children’s zoo.

Home to lions, rhinos, tigers, flamingos, meerkats, parrots, and many other species, the zoo’s large open spaces aim to give animals as much room and freedom as possible.

4. Jeonju Zoo | Deokjin-gu, Jeonju

Jeonju Zoo, located in the North Jeolla Province, first opened its doors to the public in 1978. Home to tigers, giraffes, and hippos among other animals, Jeonju Zoo also includes an aquarium and an amusement park called DreamLand.

For those on a tight budget, Jeonju Zoo is the perfect option for a day outing, as ticket prices are 1,300won for adults, 600won for teens, and 400won for children.

5. O! World Zoo Land | Jung-gu, Daejeon

Located in Daejon, O! World Zoo Land has been open to the public since 2009 and is one of the newest zoo facilities in South Korea. Home to animals such as the Bengal Tiger and American Black Bear, O! World hosts more than 130 different species of animals.

Here, you can also find Joy Land amusement park, which includes theme park rides, an all-year-round sledding hill, and a botanical garden where you can meet a variety of different bird species.

All photos courtesy of the respective zoos. 

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