Schönbrunn Zoo

Tiergrten schoenbrunn

Schönbrunn Zoo – at 270 years the oldest zoo in the world

When was the Schönbrunn Zoo established and to whom does it date back? How many species of animals can you visit there? When and how did the first giraffe come to Vienna?

Through the baroque palace garden you reach the zoo Schönbrunn, with almost 270 years, the oldest zoo in the world! On the way there is also the maze , as a reminder of a popular baroque pastime.

The Schönbrunn Zoo was built in 1752 at the suggestion of Emperor Franz I Stephan of Lorraine, Maria Theresa’s husband , next to Schönbrunn Palace. The core of the park was a pavilion where the imperial couple could dine. Around it 13 animal enclosures were created in the form of pie corners . The Imperial Pavilion is a popular place for a break.

Over 700 animal species live in beautifully designed enclosures. Highlights are: the rainforest house, the polar bear enclosure, the koala house, the panda house, the lion en closure, the aquarium and terrarium house with coral reef.

The oldest zoo in the world still in existence has been voted the best zoo in Europe several times . It is constantly renewed and improved while maintaining its historic charm and has become a showcase zoo.

In 1828, the Viceroy of Egypt gave a giraffe to the Habsburg Emperor Franz I of Austria (grandfather of Emperor Franz Joseph). The accommodation of the “high guest” took place in the giraffe house . In May 2017, the historic giraffe house was expanded with a winter garden.

This allows visitors to look directly into the eyes of the animals in a gallery. In addition, the animals are not only offered a constant 18 °C during the cold season, but also 440 m², i.e. three times as much freedom of movement as before.

Breeding successes with giant pandas are particularly significant. They were the first in Europe to be conceived naturally. 2013 saw a major success in the field of artificial insemination. The world’s first elephant calf was born, conceived with frozen semen and artificial insemination .

The Palm House at Schönbrunn, just outside the zoo, is an impressive iron structure built in 1882. 111m long, 28m wide, 25m high and consisting of about 40,000 glass panels! it was the largest glass house in Europe when it opened. In three rooms with different temperatures, it takes you into the imperial plant collection of the Habsburgs.

Another attraction is the Desert House, opposite the Palm House. Here you can visit a desert habitat while enjoying the warmth. A small Japanese garden is freely accessible and can also be found here.

Time Travel Tip:
For Schönbrunn Palace, the Gloriette, the gardens and the zoo.

we recommend that you take a whole day. Finally, the entire site has


  1. the size of the Principality of Monaco. Especially with children, a visit to the zoo is a highlight and the program with changing animal feedings is designed very exciting.

From time to time the zoo also organizes night tours, where you can “sneak” through the zoo with night vision cameras and thus see especially nocturnal animals. If you only want to visit the zoo , then take the green subway line U4 to Hietzing. In Hietzing – at Hietzinger Platzl – there is also some choice of restaurants and cafes.

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