From the aquarium to the zoo, we’ve put together a guide of the best places to sight-see animals in Jakarta, plus tips for a bonus adventure with your little one!
Think back to a time when you first saw your first animal – something you probably don’t remember, but your parents sure do: The widening of the pupils, the exclamation in your voice and the animal noises you try to mimic. The same wonderful experiences you had are now the same experiences your child can have. We’ve put together a round-up of family-friendly places to see animals in Jakarta, where you can peep through your child’s eyes for a sensory experience, while sharing a few memories together. We’ve given you a list of things you can do before, during and after the visit to make this a real adventure the both of you can cherish.
Before your departure
Introduce your child to marine or zoo life by looking at picture books or watching movies to pique their interests. Seeing the animals on a book or screen beforehand will put things in a much more diverse perspective and give your kids a bigger appreciation for when they finally see the animals in real life.
Design an itinerary
We all know children have short attention spans and are easily over-stimulated, so be sure to plan the “must sees” lest he gets tired by the time he gets to the exhibit that they will mostly like (been there, done that). Don’t try to drink it all in because the world of animals is a big one and sometimes its just not possible to cram all of them in one day. Remember, quality not quantity.
Timing is everything
Arrive early, if possible. You’ll usually find fewer crowds right after opening. Midday is most likely the most crowded with number of visitors diminishing during late afternoons. But you won’t want to go late afternoons so you can avoid the traffic on the drive back home (toddlers and traffic = no one is having fun).
Things to pack
Binoculars, snacks, strollers, sippy cups, wet tissues and don’t forget the diaper bag!
Where to go
Located inside the Neo SOHO mall, the Jakarta Aquarium offers a great way to introduce your child to the world of sea creatures or simply, “FISH!” Though it doesn’t have as many species as the bigger Seaworld, the aquarium has enough to offer your child hands-on experiences through their touchable exhibits and the colourful marine life. Make it an educative trip by pointing out the different types of marine life and see if they can say it after you.
Tickets to Jakarta Aquarium are available online at Tokopedia.
Jakarta Aquarium, Neo SOHO Floor LG 101, Jl. Letjen S. Parman No.28, Tanjung Duren Selatan, West Jakarta.
This wildlife park requires a trip to Bogor but it’s definitely worth the long car ride. If you’re wondering how far it is, it’s approximately 80 km away from Soekarno-Hatta International Airport. But before you get discouraged, the park is 170 hectares and has a collection of 2,500 animals. Driving through the park in your car will be a great surprise for your kids as some animals come to your window. Be sure to stock up with carrots and apples for feeding time. There are six wildlife shows offered, including a Wild West Show, Dolphin Show and an Elephant show if shows are something your child loves. For something more up close and personal, head on over to the petting zoo.
Taman Safari, Jl. Raya Puncak No. 601, Cibeureum, Cisarua, Bogor, Jawa Barat.
Memory Game: Recall with your child, his/her favorite exhibit and try to draw one of it using paper, paints and colored pencil. It’s best if you start the outline and have your child fill in the characters. Bonus points for bonding and education time.
Action and Play: Relive some of your animal adventures! Play a game of hide-and-seek where he or she pretends to be an animal in exhibit or one that is camouflaged by using the same colored t-shirts draped all over.