Tuesday, August 19, 2008


I've come across enthusiastic reviews of Ark Avilon Zoo and wanted to see for myself if it wasn't simply overrated. Hence, on a slightly overcast Sunday, we got up extra early, had a quick breakfast, and headed straight to Frontera Verde in Pasig City. Nelson and I wanted Zakeisha's third birthday to be tremendously memorable, and we thought a jaunt to this unique menagerie would definitely do the trick.

Our first stop was the Blue Whale Grill, located right beside the incipient hit safari park. Lunch consisted of a P300 crispy pork dish, four cups of rice, and two tall glasses of ripe mango juice. Post-lunch, the bill skyrocketed to P800, though I could attest the price was fairly reasonable given the scrumptious large quantities the quaint restaurant serves. Boy, were we full.

Plus, we got the free Bumper Boat Ride as a perk for dining with them (For customers with at least P500 food purchase, that is).

Next stop, of course, was the main highlight of the day.
Ark Avilon Zoo, as the name implies, got its inspiration from the legendary Noah of the old testament and the gargantuan vessel God asked him to build in order to save compliant humans and two of each animal species from a malevolent storm.

Except for Ark Avilon's stationary status and slightly smaller structure, the concept remains close to the original idea: A safe haven for exotic creatures where denizens and visitors of manila could appreciate their distinct pulchritude and utilitarian abilities in life. A ticket costs 200 bucks. You get an ink stamp on your hand so you can leave the premises and come back anytime you want.

An eagle perched on a roost amidst the artificial falls

The lion sleeps...

Coy owls

The bird seemed oblivious to the camera.

You can find this captivating huge fish and prey swimming placidly in an aquarium on the 1st level of the ark.

I guess what makes Ark Avilon Zoo eminent is their evincible effort in emphasizing interaction. Patrons can feed and touch most of the animals, or have their pictures taken with them. They also have play nooks for tots, function areas, souvenir shops, and food stations.

Jenny the Orangutan

They don't let them out without the keepers.

We did feel like adopting her.

An absolutely terrifying moment with a ball python

Zakei feeds the rabbits with a carrot. Feeds are sold starting at P10.

With the lovely cockatoos

A playground inside an ark! How convivial!

The lion stares...

On the Ark from sun up to sun down

Now, I know why everyone who's been to this miniature paradise that sprung at the heart of the city infers it's one of top places to take your kids. One word to describe our trip to the Ark is "refreshing." I've seen all sorts of zoos in the past but this one exudes its own sense of advocacy and a different kind of fun that even adults won't fail to cite.

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