Natura Artis Magistra

City: Amsterdam
Country: Netherlands
Province: South Holland
Opend 1838

Species 600

Artis, short for Natura Artis Magistra (Latin for "Nature is the teacher of art"), is a zoo in the centre of Amsterdam. It is the oldest zoo in the Netherlands. In addition to the zoo, Artis has an aquarium, a planetarium, a geological museum, and a zoological museum.

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Last visited 2017


Natura Artis Magistra
Postbus 20164
1000 HD Amsterdam

Phone number 0900 – 27 84 796



Opened minimum 9am - 5 pm

Entrance fee

Zoo only

  • Adult 24,- Euros
  • Child 20,50 Euros
Zoo and Micropia
  • Adult 29,50 Euros
  • Child 25,50 Euros

Annual cards (Lidmaatshap)

Zoo only
  • Adult 76,- Euro
  • Child 3-17 years 51,- Euro
  • Seniors over 65 years 69,- Euro

Zoo and Micropia

  • Adult 86,-
  • Child 61,-
  • Seniors over 65 years 79,-


For kids there is a petting area and several playgrounds


The zoo was founded in 1838 by Gerard Westerman, J.W.H. Werlemann and J.J. Wijsmuller (also known as the three Ws). It was initially open only to members. Starting in 1851 it was opened to the public during the month of September. In 1920 it was opened year-round to the public, but September remains discount month. The core of the current zoo property, then the "Middenhof" estate, was purchased by the board of the Zoological Society "Natura Artis Magistra" late in 1938 in the Plantage, which was then a rural area on the outskirts of Amsterdam. From the start it exhibited both live and mounted specimens. The zoo is commonly referred to as Artis, because the zoo has three gates with Natura Artis Magistra written above them. Usually only the middle gate was open, so people who walked through that gate, looked what was written above it and saw 'Artis', thinking that the zoo was just called Artis. Soon few knew it as Natura Artis Magistra. The last quagga in captivity died at Artis on 12 August 1883. At the time all Zebras were referred to as quagga, so nobody realized that this was the last quagga alive until years later. The last quagga has been stuffed and is now on display at the zoological museum at Artis

The Zoo includes many historic buildings. The the zoological museum was built in 1855, and the library building in 1867. The Aquarium was built in 1882 on land leased from the city on condition that only a museum ever be built on it. The wolf house (formerly an inn), and the Masman Garden House which now houses scarlet ibis were both on the site before the zoo was established.

Map 2011 Map 2015 Map 2020

After have been paying the entrance fee we turn left and se the planetarium with daily shows. Across we are having the camel field with different domestic animals like the bactrian camel and the watussi. Crossing the main road we have the childrens zoo, here you can pet pygmy goats.  Next to the camel field is the monkey rock with Japanese Macaques. Next to the childrens zoo we finde some Dutch grasland birds. In this area we also are having the geological museum. Going over the bridge we look at the Gibbon Island and the we look at the southamerican pampas. Behinde it we have some australian enclosure where we meet animals like casowary. Here in the middle of the zoo we are having the small mammals house with tamarins and fossas, just to mention a few. Outside again we are looking at the Oak and the lime, theire neighbour is the beautyfull Minangkabuan house with animals frome Red Pandas. The we are looking at the Pheasantry with lots of birds like Ibises and the Seriema. Theire neighbours are the Wolfes.  To calm down we take a look at a japanese stonegarden, before we are entering one of Europes biggest aquariumbuildings. Its also home for the zoological museum.  In front of it we finde the enclosure for penguins. Next are some asian animals like the Malayan Tapir and the Axis Deer.In this are we also finde the home for the Chimpanzee. Following the barking we finde the Californian Sea Lion as well as the bears, like the Polar Bear. Beneath we finde the Butterfly Pavillion and in front of it the Insect house. Then we are watching the Siatungas before entering the home for the Gorillas. Outside again we can se the Wisent and the are going in to the next house with noctural animals. On the side of this house we are having aviarys  for Vultures. Now we are looking at the interesting giraffes and in front of them we have the Gemsbok. Behinde the giraffehouse we finde the Savannah. Going back to the old part we look at the Asian Elephant and afterwards at the Owls castle. To chill a bit again we can look at the Dutch Garden before we look to the right at cats like the Lion and the Jaguar. Then we are looking at the nutria before we enter the enclosure for lemurs. Going on the next bridge we look at different ducks and geeses, before turning right again to the reptile house. Next door we are having the primate house with especially monkeys as well as Orang Utans. The last house before exiting the zoo is then the bird house. 

DE: Amsterdam Zoo ist der ältest der Niederlande und zeigt grosse vielzahl von tieren mit einem grossen Aquarium und anderen Tierhäusern. Interessant ist auch das planetarium und naturwissenschaftliche Museum

DK: Amsterdam zoo er den ældste i Holland og viser mange spændende dyr. Det råderover et større akvarium, men har også et planetarie og et naturvidenskabeligt museum
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