Budapest Zoo

City: Budapest
Country: Hungary
Region: Central Hungary
Opend 1866


Species 896


This is by far hungarys biggest zoo by species and as well as the oldest opened in the old Austrian-Hungarian double monarchy. Beside some interesting species its also known for its botanical section, most impressiv is the Japanese garden - one of the biggest in Europe. The old house for tropical plants also is the home for reptiles, fishes and insects.

Vis stort kort

Last visit 2022



Zoo Budapest
Allatkerti krt. 6-12
1146 Budapest


Telefon nr.: 01 273 4900


 Minimum Open 9am-4pm 



  • Adult  4500,- HUF
  • Child 3200,- HUF
  • Familly* 11000,- HUF

* Familly cards are vallid for 2 adukts and 1 child, each additional child costs 2900,- HUF

Annual card

  • Adult 13.500,- HUF
  • Child 9.600,- HUF


Xantus János Zoo is one of the founders of Hungary had already thought about a zoo in the 1830's and 1840's. The 1848-49 revolution and freedom fight, and then in the succeeding years, however, conditions were not favorable for establishment. After a longer break, in 1859, was considered to install a zoo again. The ideas of John Xantus, a zoologist, an ethnographer and traveler, a geologist, Professor Joseph Szabo, Kubinyi Augustine, former director of the Hungarian National Museum and Gerenday Joseph, director of the Botanic Garden were the most active. Although the plan was welcomed by enthusiastic, in fact, in 1863, the Hungarian Academy of Sciences dealt with the matter, the year of construction starts, was largely due to bureaucratic obstacles. Finally, in 1864, the Hungarian royal council of approval could be formed in the "Zoo Society Limited". The required equity capital by issuing shares sought to provide. Meanwhile, the Royal Free City of Pest gave free land on the the 5th September 1865 to the project for thirty years for use free of charge and covered 600 acres (about 18 hectares) of land in the city. The completion of the construction work was in 1866, the year took place and the great part of the livestock was then obtained. The Director was John Xantus who opened the zoo eventually 1866th August 9 . By this time in the garden 11 major and several smaller buildings where built, and about 500 animals could be seen by the audience.

In the first decades of the animals presented mainly in the Carpathian Basin have been living resources, although there were some real exotic specialties such as Queen Elizabeth's gift of a giraffe. Her husband, Francis Joseph, 34 animals from Schönbrunn (Vienna) are a gift to the garden. One of the most popular animals was a brown bear called Christopher, but a number of monkeys and parrots in the outstanding collection enriched the garden. All ready though the garden had economical problems due to the Prussian-Austrian war, high costs for food for the animals and really high prices for new animals, so the interest by the people didnt last long.

The "Sera-era"
Over thirty years Charles Sera led to the institution (1873-1906). Sera opend becourse of the bad economics a circus and comedians, but the financial situation wpouldn't get better. So the city of Pest agreed to help the garden. In 1876, according to plans drawn up Hauszmann Alajos the Lions Hall was erected, and Count Andor Semsey built a bird house. 1884 onwards, the former animal dealer Carl Hagenbeck showed "people shows" is to entertain the audience. The show introduced remote ethnic groups, which was as great an sensation at the time, as exotic animals. Singhalese were the first with 20 trained elephants, but the general public better liked the lapps. 1890 onwards, a lot of new animals were bought specific: for example, Jonas, the first Nile hippo, and even a rare Sumatran rhinoceros. Newcomers were in the garden like the chimpanzees and orangutans, sea lions, anteaters and maned wolfes, as well as the white-tailed wilderbeest. Both elephant species were introduced. Typically, the animals around the centuryturn were kept in small cages and there were no professional animal keepers - the only professional was a vet. In 1896, the number of visitors was higher than ever. Then an entire African tribes also moved to the zoo, which was a big attraction that year. However, after another deepression began, becourse the city wanted a normal regular rent. The last major acquisition of animals was therefor in 1898.

Insolvency and reconstruction
In 1907, bankruptcy came, the Zoo and Növényhonosító Company is without money. The operation of the institution is still popular according to Interior Minister Gyula Andrássy. He suggest that the state took over the leading. From then on, the garden has the name of Budapest Zoo and Botanical Garden. After taking over it wasdecided to rebuild the garden. Mayor of the city development, dr. Bárczy Stephen was the chief patron of this initiative. The first step in rebuilding 1,212,000 gold crowns provided for the rebuilding costs, and the appointment of a new zoo director dr. Zoltan Ráthonyi, a veterinarian.A twelve-member committee was formed to manage the reconstruction, whose members are reputable zoologists, botanists, architects and public figure. A committee of four people led by a dr. Theodore Bódy, the deputy mayor, acted as president. The plan was adopted and the amount of 4 million gold crowns was raised. Due of the reconstruction of the garden it was closed between 1909-1912. The garden area ceded a part to the circus, so now permanently separated from the zoo. The remaining area, the animals are positioned to reflect the taxonomic relationships. The zoos garden plants were planted with a similar concept.The artificial rock structure are from 1907-1910. A committee members studied the contemporary zoos and as a result it was decided that Carl Hagenbeck's end-of-view of (free-runs) plans came to the zoo. It should implement the enclosures of the animals with wet and dry moats separating them from the visitors. Two works were built on a rock, using the innovations seen. The small-and large-mesh reinforced concrete structures built in stones were designed by Gyula Vegh. The zoos old buildings were demolished and new ones erected in their place. The new buildings form a unit, but different in style, were built thanks to several generations of architects represented. The main gate and the elephant house with oriental style design was entrusted to Neuschloss Kornél. The majority of animal houses (bird houses and deer house) was designed by Karoly Kos and Zrumeczky Desi. The palm house and underneath the aquarium were built according to plans by Radek Ilsemann and Christian Charles. As the old zoo only had just a few animals left, new and interesting animals were to obtain. This is partly by purchase, but the garden also got many animals by gift. Kittenberger Kalman, a well-known writer, huntined more animals for the zoo. In Khartoum, Sudan's capital, giraffes were purchased. Nearly 2,000 new animals wete purchased.

The new gardens opening
The rebuilded Zoo opened 20th May 1912th. The press called it one of Europe's most modern zoo was build primarily to the production and presentation methods, with a collection of fresh and salt water aquariums. The stock was very rich: a contemporary zoos were the first three ape species (chimpanzee, orangutan, gibbon), were seen by the public, but also baboons, the mandrill, water hog, porcupine, bears, cats, rodents, and other special animals are part of the collection. Hungaryan animals can also be found, such as red deer, fallow deer, roe deer and Hungaryian cattle. In 1915, the zoo population growth has made it nessessary for the animal nursery to open. The garden is a clear success. Speciality addition, visitors were able to ride ponys, elephants and camels and military band also entertained the audience. Another restaurant is also opened. The First World War broke out in 1914. During the First World War serious difficulties were confronting Adolf Lendl and his colleagues. During the war, the zoo was unable to buy adequate quantity and quality of food for animals, primarily the exotic species were destroyed, while the simple end of the straw was difficult to obtain. Most of the inhabitants of the aquarium was destroyed as the sea water could not be heated. The majority of male animal keepers were at the front fighting, so the company also suffered from labor shortages.

The two world wars
Adolf Lendl in 1919, was deposed from his post of Director, and the new Director was Rezső Hilbert, who worked at the zoo since 1909 as chief financial officer. His job was to World War II ,because of the financial crisis worldwide, to make it profitable again. The city struggled with financial problems as well, so they did not support the zoo, so the garden had to create their own resources. To buy new animals was no option but to take better care of existing resources, facilitated the progeny, some of the individuals were replaced by other animals. In the spring of 1920 the cholera appeared in birds, so many of them died, in mammals, however, good progress has been made of the propagation. Hilbert Rezső, age 67, retired in January 1929, so the new Director was the then 46 years old Nádler Herbert won. Nádle. Her set about reorganizing the zoo, so that the animals' biological needs and adequate space was provided for them. The aquarium was rebuilt, and completed in 1936. Meanwhile, many animals bred like lions, tigers, reindeer and even more animals were purchased, such as the Japanese giant newt, chimpanzees, and two giraffes after a long time.

During the Second World War
World War II caused extensive damage in the garden. The last war also had supply problems and lack of people was only a minor problem, unfortunately, at the siege of Budapest Zoo has been at the forefront. Serious bomb attacks, resulting in the animal and the buildings mostly destroyed. The siege of the starving population also made the animalnumber decline. Before the war there lived in the garden is 2500 speciements, 15 remained alive at the end of the war, the zoo showed a terrible picture. All employees of the institution as a result of cleaning the garden 1945 re-opened on 1st May, when the ruins were cleared away, and a couple of new animals could be acquired, which were quartered in Elephant House (the only remaining house) . A few years after the war the zoo had a very slow recovery becourse of lack of building materials. The garden again began to breed animals.

Soviet era
Between 1956 and 1967, the zoo led by dr. Csaba Angha was commissioned. Scientific foundations of garden operations, launched a number of scientific research. He asked the Academy and the capital, the zoo will receive the institution's academic rating. This is the summer of 1956 has been received. In 1957, launched a series of educational booklets titled Budapest Zoo. The inhabitants of the garden books and the world behind the scenes is presented. This year, organized the exhibition is the first zoo in history. His work, extensive relationships with domestic and international. In his administration during the re-establishment of Europe's most modern zoo has become, and the purchase of animals is conducted in accordance with the plan already. The zoo had to request a convertible currency, so only 1959 were able to obtain new animals, and also has outstanding results with the big cats, hippos. The research findings were summarized for the first time in 1962, the official journal of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences, the Hungarian Science. In 1966, the centenary of planting in the zoo, which celebrated the occasion with a time of international scientific meetings were also held. This important occasion was opening the Insect House and restoring the Little and Great rock. The war destroyed the old giraffe house and a new one was built in 1965. The garden had a planned development and modernization continued. Camels got a new house, a vivarium was opened, where invertebrates were seen by the public, but also improved the working conditions of workers. Activities upgraded the heating system and switched to gas for heating. Rebuilding or refurbishing in the Otter House, Owl's Castle and the Bird House. In 1987 the House of the Apes was erected. By 1991 the opening of the reconstructed elephant main gate and the rebuilt Kangaroohouse took place.

The present regime
The rebuilt Arctic panoráma in 1990 opened. Persányi Nicholas was director of the institution who has conducted during the major reconstruction of an area of garden renovation of old buildings, expansion, on the other hand, construction of new production facilities. There is a growing emphasis on the promotion of various programs, garden, entertainment by the same time to the dissemination of knowledge is served. In May 1998, the Hungarian-Japanese Friendship Association also thanks the gift of the Bonsai Pavilion opened, the continent's first national collection. In 1999, several new species were unique to the garden such as the desert fox. In that year, was handed over to the Little Rock side of the new seal pool. In May 2000, announced a photo contest for cash prizes in the garden, the jury of the Association of Photographers' was included as well. The garden was already involved in the environment, and an exhibition confronting visitors to the improper handling of waste, draws attention to preserve our environment. In July it opened the unique Butterfly Garden, where hundreds of butterflies can fly freely among the visitors. The year was concluded in November of the Palm House nine years of reconstruction is, in which the building, original from 1912, was transferred to the beauty of its former glory, and also added to the featured animal and plant species number. In 2001, the new renewed Elephant House got the European Nostra prize. In front of the Palm House a hedge of more than 500 meters in length was plated. After the political changes in the zoo operating costs were covered almost the same proportion of state aid, and the garden's own revenue. Continuous improvements have been increasingly popular in the garden, has greatly increased the number of visitors, has become popular with the "adoption" of the tax increase of 1% of the total number offered, so in 2001, its revenue (about 822 million) more than doubled compared to public assistance (about 379 million). In May 2003, dr. Nicholas Persányi environment and water minister was appointed. The Director General of the institution what to do now retired director of collections, dr. Ilma Bogsch was commissioned, who was in the same year the tender for the post of Director-General. January 2004 - after a break of seven prescription - re-opening of the upgraded and refurbished marine aquarium, and in March gave the new "Waterfront living" house. While the former sea, river wildlife in the show. In September, the refurbished Monkey House opened its doors. The complete reconstruction of 325 million forints, and in addition to the reconstruction of Charles and kept the Ram Zrumeczky Desi building, designed by nature, modernized livestock spaces. In July 2005, the Little Rock side of the handover of the sea lion new swimming pool, a new feature that glass viewing window, visitors can follow the sea lions underwater activities. In June 2006, this connection with possession of the ring, the polar bear got a new enclosure, so the Arctic panorama iscompletely renewed. Since May 2007, former trustee, and from 1 September appointed as Director-General Dr again. Persányi Nicholas manages the zoo. Many construction, renovations have been completed, and these new facilities and new animals are acquired. The finished works were a total of HUF 2.7 billion, as capital investment. Supply is added to the program: animal demonstrations, feedings to spectacle, and the concert series was held for adults. New enclosures for apes, African animals, set up the Savannah, the renewed Great rock. The newly-purchased animals are the Barbary macaque, the Boehm's Zebra, the brush-eared pig, Mohr gazelles and the Komodo dragon. In March 2009, all zoo buildings and structures were placed under monument protection. The same year, was handed over to the ring-tailed lemurs enclosure where visitors can walk inside, and at first hand observe the animals . In January 2010, opened the Australian house, where visitors can get acquainted with Australia's unique fauna.

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After have been paying the entrance we are turning right to se the great Apes, the Orang Utan and the Gorilla have found a home here. There neighbours are the African forest buffalo, flamingos and zebras. Across we have the old Elephanthouse with Asian Elephants and the Hippo, as well as the Hyrax - a close relative to elephants (though more looking like a rodent). Are you more in to giraffes? They are living at the next enclosure, a big Savannah and charing theire enclosure with other white rhinos, giraffes, antilopes and ostriches. Kids will love the next playarea. Across is the large rock with a touch museum inside. Out side we meet barbary sheep and several species of antelipes. Then we enter the house for noctural animals (like the duroucil and flying foxes). Outdoors you finde Komodo dragons and the Babirussa. Now we look at the big cats looking at the Amur Tiger and the Persian Leopard, then at the Lion and the Serval. Across we finde the big rock, home for Brown Bears and Lesser Pandas. Inside we finde Insects as well as spiders and other creepy crawly animals. Allways fun to look at are the monkeys next door like the scarry Mandrill and the primitive lemurs from Madagascar. Even more primitive are the following amphibians and fish. In this area we also finde the Wolf, Small-clawed Otter and Raccoon. From far we can hear, and now se, the Californian Sea Lion and behinde them the Polar Bears. This small rock is also the home for the penguins and griffons. Their neighbours are australian animals like the Casuary and the Parma Wallaby. Across we finde a birdhouse with different reptiles inside, like the Tokeh. Of the birds I just want to mention the Macaws, the Bali Mynah and the Triel. Now we are looking at a South American Pampa with Tapirs, Alpacas and just next door the Coati. Kids will love the next door Pet Zoo with donkeys, Pygmy Goats etc, but also with Hutiacongs. Across we have a big birdhouse with Australian animals with different parrots in outdoor evaries and inside a large noctural walk through enclosure and several species of reptiles. Next door is the out door enclosure for crocodiles and then we look at the Bactrian camel. Now entering the Tropical House with a lot of Plants, but also several birds, Javanese Trangulides and the Zoos main aquarium. Outside again we look at the big lake with pelicans and ducks. Befor going to the exit plantlovers for shure will looking at the fantastic Japanese Garden.

DE: Dieser Zoo hat die gröste artenvielfalt von Ungarn und ist auch der älteste. Neben dem berühmten Haupteingang gibt es mehrere schöne gebäude wie das Elefantenhaus.  

DK: Dette er Ungarns største zoo rent artmæssigt og den ældste. Haven er kendt for sin flotte hovedindgang og har mange skønne bygninger som elefanthuset
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