Parque Zoológico de Caricuao
Address: located further along the southwest highway, onwards from El Pinar Zoo
The main zoo of Caracas currently covers 88 acres of land, more than ten times that of El Pinar, reclaimed from a very large sprawling estate, a 1550 acre coffee plantation. Further expansion of the zoo is under way.
The zoo contains a much richer biodiversity on display than El Pinar. Hundreds of species of animals from around the tropical rainforests, the savannah, and practically all around the world, from the slimiest slithery reptiles to the most graceful avian beauties, from the most vicious to the most passive, laidback creatures ever to walk the planet, Caricuao has it all.
Peacocks and flamingos can usually be found innocently prancing around in the open, their colorful feather-work on display. Other animals can be a bit naughty, however, especially monkeys – watch out for your handbags, as monkeys often snatch and carry them away in search of food, and leave them hanging on impossible-to-reach tree branches. Animals like large cats and reptiles are usually caged, but even their enclosures are marvelously landscaped to resemble their own natural habitats.
The zoo premises also houses walking tracks, picnic spots, and a sports center. A small petting zoo is also available, which makes for an exciting experience for kids as they scurry around trying to “tame” animals by feeding them little pieces of bread or nuts while gently stroking them.