Zoo Negara Guide Activities to Do in Malaysia’s Biggest Zoo

Zoo Negara Guide: Activities to Do in Malaysia’s Biggest Zoo

Zoo Negara – an enchanting destination situated in the heart of Malaysia. This expansive zoo covers 110 acres and is home to a remarkable collection of over 5,000 animals from 459 species! Incredible, right?

Nestled near the vibrant city of Kuala Lumpur, Zoo Negara offers a captivating retreat into the wonders of nature. You’ll definitely want to explore its diverse ecosystems and encounter fascinating creatures!

To make sure you get the best out of your visit, here’s our Zoo Negara guide. Here, we’ll share our favorite must-see exhibits, things you need to know, and more. Read on!

Time Zone

Malaysian Standard Time (UTC+8)

Best Time to Go

The best time to visit Zoo Negara is during the cooler months, typically from March to October. The weather is more pleasant for exploring the zoo’s vast grounds and observing the animals during this time around.

Arriving early in the morning or late in the afternoon can help you avoid the peak crowds, allowing for a more peaceful and enjoyable experience. Keep in mind that some animals may be more active during cooler temperatures, enhancing your chances of seeing them in action. 

Things to Know 

Address: Zoo Negara, Hulu Kelang, 68000 Ampang, Selangor Darul Ehsan

Operating Hours:

  • Monday to Sunday 9AM to 5PM

Ticket Prices:

Zoo Negara Ticket Prices MalaysianWorking Permit/ Defendant Pass (Foreigner) Others (Foreigner)
AdultRM 45.00RM 50.00RM 88.00
Children (3 to 12 yrs)RM 18.00RM 25.00RM 43.00
Senior Citizen (60 yrs above)RM 23.00RM 50.00RM 88.00

You can conveniently purchase tickets online through their website or at the ticket counters located at the zoo’s entrance. 

Local Tip: 

  • They may have separate ticket prices for guided tours or special programs. To get the most up-to-date information on ticket prices, discounts, and available programs, it’s best to check the official Zoo Negara website.

How to Get There 

Bus: You can take the buses on Line Route 220 and 253 as they both pass near Zoo Negara. 

Train: You can also take a train to reach the zoo such as the MRT and LRT Line Route 5. Alight at KL Sentral station and get off at Gombak Station. 

Taxi: Taxis are readily available and offer a comfortable and direct way to get to the zoo.

Ride-Hailing Service: Utilize ride-hailing apps such as Grab or inDrive to book a private ride to transport you to Zoo Negara.

What to Do in Zoo Negara 

Crawl with the spiders at the Rimba Biodiversiti

Does the mention of the word “insects” make you crawl back into your blanket? Well, no matter how scared you may be of them, they are actually important in our ecosystem and they play a vital role in the survival of other animals! 

And at the Rimba Biodiversiti exhibit, you can explore the world of insects and even take photos of beautiful butterflies.

Experience the ultimate safari adventure at Savannah Walk

The Savannah Walk is the closest place you’ll be to an actual African Savannah when you’re in Malaysia! As you walk around this huge, open-concept exhibit, you’ll see graceful giraffes, using their long necks to eat leaves from high trees.

The zebras are also fascinating to watch with their cool stripes as they munch on grass together. Not to be missed, the white rhinos are impressively huge and possess special features from a long, long time ago.

Keep your eyes peeled to see other animals, such as ostriches, Sable antelopes, Scimitar horned oryx, and more!

Meet the adorable pandas at the Giant Panda Conservation Centre

At the Panda Conservation Centre you’ll be able to see these adorable pandas that are so cute, you’d want to cuddle them! 

There are two charming giant pandas in this exhibit, Xing Xing and Liang Liang, who have welcomed three cubs since they arrived in Zoo Negara! 

The pair were sent to the zoo as a symbol of the strong diplomatic relationship between China and Malaysia, and they will live there for 10 years before returning to China in 2024. 

Discover where intelligence meets adventure at Ape Centre

At the Ape Centre, you’ll meet these clever primates such as orangutans who can solve tricky problems. 

The nimble gibbons swing and do acrobatics in the trees in an open-concept enclosure, where they can roam freely! And don’t forget the strong and mighty gorillas that will leave you in awe with their big and powerful presence. 

We recommend keeping your eyes peeled for Katy and Maja, who will pose for your photos when they see your camera. Talk about a memorable experience! 

Local Tip: 

  • If you stick around long enough, you might even see the apes kissing, shaking hands or even bickering with each other! 

Waddle with the Humboldt Penguins

Here you’ll see these amazing creatures swimming and gliding through the water with style at the Humboldt Penguins Exhibit. 

Their feathers are black and white, and they look super cute when they walk with a funny waddle. 

Fun fact: These adorable creatures came all the way from the Czech Republic and were named after the 18th century explorer, Alexander von Humboldt!

Local Tip: 

  • Catch the penguins “fly” underwater during their feeding time at 11:00 am everyday! 

Wonder at the different kinds of bears at the Bear Complex

You’ll see how powerful and beautiful these amazing creatures are as you enter the land of bears at the Bear Complex! 

There are 3 species of bears at the Bear Complex: the Asiatic Black Bear, the Brown Bear, and the Malayan Sun Bear.

Local Tip: 

  • Don’t worry if you find that the bears aren’t moving—they’re okay! Bears just love to catch their “zzs” under the sun. 

Journey with majestic felines at the Cat Walk

At the Zoo Negara’s Cat Walk, you’ll meet lots of majestic felines. 

Watch the sleek and sneaky leopards move through their habitat as if walking on a runway.  You’ll also see the regal lions, who are like the kings of the animal kingdom, lazily enjoying the sun. It’s like Lion King came to the real world! 

Keep your eyes open for the elusive clouded leopards with their cool markings as well as the Malayan tiger cubs. 

They’ll leave you feeling amazed!

Local Tip: 

  • Visit the Cat Walk exhibit during the early morning or late afternoon to catch the Malayan tiger cubs playing with their mother! 

Be amazed at the Hornbill Centre

Zoo Negara proudly houses seven species of hornbills in their exhibit. It was built in 2010 as a breeding centre for the Great Hornbills, Rhinoceros Hornbills, Wrinkled Hornbills and the Oriental Pied Hornbills species. What a sight for sore eyes! 

Fun fact: the females, once she has laid her eggs, will seal herself with eggs in a tree with mud. The only way for them to receive food is from the male hornbill! 

Local Tip: 

  • Try to keep it quiet when visiting this exhibit, as eggs might be incubating and must not be disturbed. 

Step into the Reptile House realm 

Here you’ll find the largest crocodile in the world – the Saltwater or what they call Estuarine crocodiles. The Reptile House boasts both an indoor and outdoor exhibit! How cool is that?

You’ll also meet the first captive born False Gharials in this exhibit. 

Aside from the crocodiles, you’ll also see other kinds of reptiles as well such as tortoises (the world’s second largest species, the Aldabran!), terrapins, and lizards! 

And of course, you wouldn’t think of reptiles without thinking of snakes, right? Well, you get to meet them here too! Take a look at the world’s longest snake, the reticulated pythons and the green anaconda – the heaviest snake in the world! 

Meet the gentle giants of the Malaysian Elephant Exhibit

Meet Siti (female), Sibol (female), and Teriang (male) – three of the elephants that came all the way from Pahang. They’re apparently in their late twenties or early thirties, which is pretty interesting to know! 

Local Tip: 

  • You can feed them sugarcane or bananas as these elephants have a major sweet tooth! 

Delight in Lake Birds Exhibit

Over 300 free-roaming birds live at the Tunku Abdul Rahman lake which is located in the heart of Zoo Negara. 

Here you’ll find painted storks, ibises, egrets, swans, and pelicans who live on the two islands in the middle of the lake.

Local Tip: 

  • Snap a pic of these free flying birds during their feeding time at 11:00AM and 3:00PM! 

Discover what’s Down Under in the Australian Plain Exhibit

Here you can catch a glimpse of Australia’s national animal– the kangaroo! You’ll also find a group of wallabies with a flock of emus, Australia’s largest bird. 

The smallest marsupials in the zoo, the Pademelons, can also be found here, next to the Reptile House. 

Dive into the Hippopotamus Exhibit

Zoo Negara is home to a family of Nile Hippopotamuses! Their names are Duke, Kibu, and Chombie. Two more calves were welcomed to the family in 2009! 

There are two species of hippopotamus in the world: Nile Hippopotamus and Pygmy hippopotamus.

Local Tip: 

  • Don’t mistake the pygmy hippopotamus as a big rock in the exhibit! Don’t worry, it’s just taking a big ol’ bath!

Journey through the wonders of the ocean at the Tunku Abdul Rahman Aquarium 

Visit the Tunku Abdul Rahman Aquarium, one of the oldest public aquariums in Malaysia! It is home to fishes, aquatic fauna and flora, and is the country’s first exhibition of the Malaysian River Journey! 

It also houses rare and endangered species such as crabs, prawns, aquatic insects, among others. 

If you visit this exhibit, it will take you on a journey from the Upper Stream Zone to the Mid Stream Zone, and down to the Wetlands Zone and the Lower River Zone. 

You’ll also catch a glimpse of the beautiful coral reefs and deep sea exhibits as you pass by the Peat Swamp Zone, the Mangrove Zone, and the Marine Zone. 

Embark on a wild adventure at Children’s World

If you have kids, this is the perfect place to let them run free while getting their senses stimulated.

You and your kids can get up close to friendly animals and have fun in the petting zoo, where you can interact with deer, goats, and miniature horses.

Children’s World is a safe and awesome place for you to learn all about wildlife and why we need to take care of it. 

Watch live animal shows 

Your admission ticket includes a tour and program package that entails access to a variety of performances, shows, and feeding sessions at the park. 

Here are the live animal shows you can watch: 

Multi-Animal Show (Sea Lion/Macaws)

  • Saturday – Thursday 11:00AM & 3:00PM
  • Closed on Fridays, except school holidays & public holidays

Don’t miss the Multi-Animal Show at Zoo Negara where visitors can be entertained as the playful sea lions perform impressive tricks in perfect harmony. 

The vibrant and colorful macaws will also dazzle you with their beauty as they fly gracefully through the air in an unforgettable display of talent and charm.

Animal Feeding Sessions

  • Weekends & Public Holidays only
  • Children’s World: 12:00 – 13:00
  • Javan Deer: 14:00 – 15:00

Local Tip:

  • To make the most of your visit, it’s a good idea to check the schedule of the tours and programs in advance. Some programs might require advance booking or have limited availability, so it’s best to plan ahead. 

Get involved at Zoo Negara

Want to go deeper than just viewing the animals at the zoo? Well, you can get to work with animals through the Zoo Negara Keeperku Program!

Participants can work in the Wildlife Husbandry and Enrichment and Veterinary Hospital departments as well as assist in the Education, Public Relations, Customer Service, and Park and Garden departments. 

It’s open to all aged 16 years old and above among students from schools, colleges, and universities. Students can also gain even more experience for their degrees, masters, or PhDs as the zoo offers practical courses on the following:

  • Administration
  • Customer service
  • Human Resource
  • Public Relation & Marketing
  • Education           
  • Information Technology
  • Veterinary Sciences
  • Zoology
  • Biology
  • Tourism
  • Horticulture

Where to Eat in Zoo Negara

Zoo Negara offers a variety of dining options to satisfy your hunger during your visit. 

You can find food stalls and restaurants strategically located throughout the zoo, ensuring you won’t have to wander far to find a delicious meal. Here are some of the food kiosks around the zoo: 

The Wild Restaurant

The Wild Restaurant
(Photo from Nanee J. on Foursquare)

The Wild Restaurant is Zoo Negara’s family restaurant for those on a budget. Located in the heart of the zoo, it offers a wide range of delicious fast food and finger food at affordable prices. 

Local Tip:

  • The Wild Restaurant offers “Value Meals” with prices that range for as low as RM15 which include drink options already, so you don’t have to spend a fortune on your food! 

Mane Delicious

You can cool down from the heat of walking around the zoo with deserts from Mane Delicious. Don’t get too cool though, so take it slow on the ais kacang and cendol!

Panda Cafe

Panda Cafe
(Photo from Julian A. on Foursquare)

If you have an extra budget and you’re willing to splurge a bit more, you can go for the Panda Cafe that serves delicious traditional Malaysian food (What is malaysia famous food)! 

Try their tasty nasi lemak, curry mee, fried mee hoon while you’re there! 

Where to Shop in Zoo Negara

Zoovenir Shop

Located inside the Giant Panda Conservation Centre and in front of the Savannah Walk, you can find exclusive merchandise of the zoo’s main attraction – the Giant Pandas! Now you can bring home a piece of your experience visiting Zoo Negara. 

Bee Museum

Visit the biggest honey producer in Malaysia! Here you can get a peek inside the hives of the jungle bees and even better, get a taste of their honey. 

What to Expect from Zoo Negara Weather

Dry Season (March to October): The dry season in Zoo Negara brings warm and humid weather, with temperatures ranging from 25°C to 32°C (77°F to 90°F). 

Rainy Season (November to February): Rainy season in Zoo Negara with occasional heavy showers and thunderstorms, with temperatures ranging from 24°C to 31°C (75°F to 88°F).

Apps to Download When Visiting Zoo Negara

Zoo Negara App: Information about the zoo, show times, guided tours
iOS | Android

Grab: Ride hailing, electric bikes and motorized scooters, food delivery
iOs | Android

inDrive: Ride hailing car

iOS | Android

Google Translate: Word translation with offline capabilities
iOs | Android