We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“Great zoo - a really full day out”
Review of Colchester Zoo

Colchester Zoo
Ranked #4 of 78 things to do in Colchester
Certificate of Excellence
More attraction details
Attraction details
Owner description: Colchester Zoo is constantly developing and has won many awards for its work. With over 270 species to see, set in 60 acres of beautiful parkland and lakes, Colchester Zoo is well worth a visit. As you walk around the zoo there's plenty of play areas to try out including the indoor soft play area Jungle Tumble with a section for under 3s and all new play equipment where the kids can release their wild side! New enclosures include a walk through enclosure with butterflies and another with Rainbow Lorikeets offering visitors a chance to feed them a treat of nectar. Plus there's 'Bears of the Rising Sun', a state of the art enclosure which houses two beautiful sun bears , Jo Jo and Srey Ya. You can also come face to face with Komodo Dragons, see white rhino, giraffes, ostrich and kudu roaming together at Kingdom of the Wild and walk underwater through the 24m tunnel at the Playa Patagonia sealion pool. Learn more about the animals and see them up close by watching one of the 50 daily displays. You even get the fantastic opportunity to feed the elephants and giraffes yourself and take a ride on the 'Lost Madagascar Express' road train! Don't forget to pop into the discovery centre and have a go at handling some unusual bugs or get your face painted and transform yourself into your favourite animal!
Reviewed April 2, 2013

We had a great time at Colchester Zoo - loads to see. Fortunately we had free entry through associate membership with another zoo - I should add that if we'd paid the normal entrance fee for a family, we may have taken a slightly more demanding view. But the place is well planned and varied (although the landscape of the park is very up and down - we were relieved that an elderly relative didn't accompany us in the end!).

Thank Chris S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Write a ReviewReviews (4,491)
Traveler rating
Traveler type
Time of year
  • More languages
All reviews
"gold card"
in 158 reviews
"feeding times"
in 108 reviews
"animal enclosures"
in 93 reviews
"train ride"
in 91 reviews
"sea lions"
in 156 reviews
"food outlets"
in 109 reviews
"sun bears"
in 58 reviews
"animals seem"
in 50 reviews
"plenty of places to eat"
in 51 reviews
"annual pass"
in 61 reviews
"tesco vouchers"
in 49 reviews
"great family day"
in 88 reviews
"all ages"
in 242 reviews
"packed lunch"
in 71 reviews
"well worth the money"
in 59 reviews
"value for money"
in 130 reviews
"school holidays"
in 65 reviews

4,028 - 4,032 of 4,491 reviews

Reviewed April 2, 2013

Good points:
Easy to find, free car-parking.

Good zoo with lots of interesting animals and exhibits. Especially liked the ants, sealion tunnel, wolves and 'familiar friends'.

Good toilet facilities - disabled toilets, baby change & baby feeding areas.

Not-so-good points:
Some of the grounds are quite hilly, although we managed with a pushchair and a person with a walking frame.

Expensive (we visit zoos quite often) and although at a reduced rate, unusually it charges for carers.

Thank PandaGirl2013
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 2, 2013 via mobile

Easy to find and well sign posted ,parking is plentifull ,entrance well staffed and quick .Please don't expect a cheap day out its £20 an adult and some £17 for children.Once your in unlike many other attractions everything else is free .Great range of things to do with lots of shows and feeding displays ,a real active day out ! If its your first time be prepared for big hills and lots of walking... Not suitable for elderly relatives unless in a wheelchair and even then need strong assistant !! Food inside is reasonably priced and even in foul weather with waterproofs still a good day out .My top tip is if you live locally get the gold card we go back four or five times a year and it saves a fortune in entry fees .I must have been 8 times now and never get bored of it .Great venue for children probably one of the best in the UK let alone Essex. It's expensive for one visit but I think worth the multi visit and you need to be pretty active to enjoy it all . Recommended .Only down side is they constantly beg for more money when your inside ,even after I'd made a donation on entry !!! Got annoying after second Time ! I've already given Zoo guys leave it out ..

Thank Neil T
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
ColZoo, Public Relations Manager at Colchester Zoo, responded to this reviewResponded April 6, 2013

Information is incorrect. Child entry is a maximum of £13.50.

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 1, 2013

The zoo was a great day out for our family. There are plenty of animals to see as you walk around the zoo. We arrived quite early, so some of the animals hadn't quite woken up, but we found plenty of animals that were awake and entertaining us. There are a lot of interesting animals that we don't see very often at other zoos, like the aardvarks and the komodo dragons, we spent a good 6 1/2 hours at the zoo and we could have easily spent longer there. The food in the restaurant was average, but we were there for the animals not the food and we weren't disappointed. There is an opportunity to feed the giraffes and elephants, but we weren't in the right part of the zoo for that. We got real close up views of the tigers in their superb large enclosure and were treated to seeing the sun bears as we were heading back towards the exit (they were sleeping when we arrived at the zoo!). The only disappointment was that the lemurs had decided that it was just too cold to be outside so they were hiding when we walked around their enclosure, which you get to on the Madagascar express land train. It wasn't obvious to anyone on the train that we could just jump off once the train had stopped there and the slightly grumpy driver thought no one wanted to get off to look around even though most of the passengers actually wanted to! All in all a brilliant day out, and a grumpy train driver couldn't dampen our spirits!

Thank gecko77
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
See more reviews
Reviewed March 31, 2013

Given the relatively high entrance price, Colchester Zoo does not offer very good value for money at the moment. So many of the exhibits are either under development or being refurbished, you can walk for several minutes without seeing an animal. Furthermore, you get the feeling that there are more play areas and eateries than exhibits.
Since our last visit, the domestic animals (rabbits, Guinea pigs etc) have been replaced by a Japanese style garden and the numbers of animals have been reduced - there were only 4 seals in the tank on the day of our visit!
I may have been spoilt by recent zoo visits in the USA and Australia, but this was a real disappointment and we will wait a while until our next visit.

Thank Graham S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Travelers who viewed Colchester Zoo also viewed


Been to Colchester Zoo? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Owners: What's your side of the story?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing