The Tokyo Ueno Zoo is the oldest zoo in Japan and dates back to 1882. Located in down-town Tokyo, the zoo is not only an entertainment attraction, but it also serves as a wildlife conservation and education facility breeding many endangered species.
The most popular animals at the zoo are the Chinese Giant Pandas, which have been exhibited since 1972. The zoo is part of a breeding program with some other major zoos around the world including the Beijing and San Diego Zoos. The zoo has been successful breeding many endangered species, including aye-ayes and pygmy hippos.
The zoo has a magnificent five storey Pagoda that gives the zoo a real Japanese touch; the pagoda dates back to 1631 and was rebuilt a couple of times due to fire and other destruction. Another popular attraction is the monorail, and children’s petting zoo where children can get up close to the animals.
Some of the most popular animals include pygmy hippos, gorillas, penguins, sloth’s, aardvarks, many species of monkey and the crowd favourite the Asiatic Elephant plus several different bears including polar bears, Hokkaido brown bears, sun bears and Japanese black bears.
The zoo is open 6 days a week from 10 am. The zoo is closed Mondays or Tuesdays if there is a public holiday on Monday.
Ueno Zoo is easy to get to from anywhere in Tokyo. Located in Ueno Park, Taito-ku, Tokyo, the zoo is a 5-10 minute walk from JR Ueno Station on the Yamanote Line or Keihin-Tohoku Line, Tokyo Metro Ueno Station on the Ginza (G16) or Hibiya line (H17), Tokyo Metro Nezu Station on the Chiyoda line (C14) or Keisei Ueno Station.
For more information visit http://www.tokyo-zoo.net/english/