Being a child I loved going to the zoo and spending time with my family and having picnic with them. The funny activities of the monkeys, chimpanzees, the intense atmosphere around the confinement of the tigers, lions, cheetahs and the beautiful sight of the peacock with its feathers well-fanned used to fascinate me and I wanted to touch the animals and be with them. The members of my family are all animal lovers so when I proposed the idea of checking out Rajiv Gandhi Zoological Park Pune, every one showed interest. Since the zoo opens from 9.30 in the morning, we decided to take a round of the zoo before the noon as it would be uncomfortable for my parents to walk around under the scorching sun.
The zoo is located in Katraj, near Pune and its maintenance is taken care of by the municipal corporation. On reaching there we entered the premises by buying tickets for Rs 15/- per person. There is also the facility of electric carts, which are very useful if you are traveling with family and kids. Since I was traveling with my parents I thought it would be difficult for them to cover the entire premises on foot. So we hired an electric cart for Rs.30/-, which was quite ok for the whole day. The zoo is divided into three segments namely an animal orphanage, a zoo and a snake park and is a haven to reptiles, mammals and birds. The zoo has a male white tiger named ‘Tanaji’. Other mammals include sloth bear, leopard, barking deer, monkeys, elephants, sambhars and black bucks. Amphibians like Indian star tortoise can also be spotted in the zoo. The snake park is awesome having a huge collection of different species of snakes, reptiles and birds.
The Rajiv Gandhi Zoological Park Pune is a shelter to various animals like any other zoo. But the tour of it brought back some fond memories of my childhood when I used to go to zoos with my grandfather who always showed as much energy as a kid in looking at the animals. We have even more to see and so we planned our next visit to Saras Baug Pune.