Sadako is already five years old and she’s never been to the zoo (I’m a bad parent, yeah). So in the desire to be a good parent, I finally brought her to one yesterday. We went to the Ark Avilon Zoo in Pasig, and can I just say that I was so glad it’s an indoor zoo because it rained yesterday.

Even before you enter, there is already a bunch of animals – rabbits, white mice, and guinea pigs – kids can go look at. But those are nothing; the “real” animals are inside.

There is also a souvenir shop selling overpriced animal stuffed toys, and other animal-themed stuff like bags and keychains and wallets and even bangles (zebra-striped, syempre).

Entrance fee for kids below 3 feet is P300, while each adult gets in for P400 (senior citizens get a 20% discount).

Inside, there is a pool full of large carps in white and orange.

There are also a variety of birds; some are caged and some are not. Some are even free so they entertainingly fly from one spot to another. 

There is also the famous Jenny, the orang-utan. When we were there, there wasn’t a lot of people, so no one was having a photo opp with her; she looked really bored.

In glass cages/rooms were bigger, wilder animals. There were lions, a jaguar, a jackal, a bear, and some penguins that didn’t want to face us.

Towards the outdoor part, there were squirrels, an owl, and some birds of prey (naks, scared).

Upstairs, there were more birds, such as a large peafowl that jumped on branches, and these colorful blue birds with scary-looking red eyes.

There was a series of glass cages featuring snakes that didn’t move but still looked very creepy.

There were goats, sheep, pigs, and a couple of donkeys.

There was also a feeding station where you could buy carrots and other vegetables and then feeds the animals.

There was also a huge iguana. And a turtle.

On the second floor, there was a playplace with a sandbar, a playhouse, and a bunch of educational materials. You can also purchase food and eat at their cafeteria. I saw a function room and a stage for programs, birthday parties, and other events.

Sadako had a great time, no doubt about it, because it was her first time to see a lot of the animals up close. However, she was scared of a lot of them. She didn’t want to get close to the snakes and even the birds even if they were fenced or caged. She was also terrified of Jenny the orang-utan, so yeah, no photo opp for her/us.

There wasn’t a lot of animals, but if you come to think of it, the variety was good enough and the effort to include a donkey and a couple of lions should be commended. Not bad for a two-floor indoor zoo, actually.

My only real complaint is that it was so hot in there our abanico fan was useless, and it was the first time Sadako wet her dress (coz of perspiration, not coz of wiwi).

A little too expensive for P400/P300, too, if you ask me, considering also how they just upped them recently.

We still had a lot of fun and it’s always a joy to see your little one wide-eyed and appreciating something new and learning, so it was all worth it.

Up next, Manila Zoo! Odiba, after that Dad of the Year na’ko.