The Master Plan for Taronga and Taronga Western Plains Zoos is a 12-year program to revolutionise facilities at both Zoos and expand their ability to participate in world-class conservation, education and wildlife care programs.
Started in 2000, the plan is the most comprehensive rebuilding of the Zoos since Taronga opened in 1916 and Western Plains Zoo in 1977.
At Taronga Zoo, new mega-exhibits have already come on-line with the amazing Australian journey that is ‘Backyard to Bush’, the fascinating junglethemed ‘” ‘Rainforest Trail’ and the gigantic showcase of the wildlife of the southern oceans, ‘Great Southern Oceans’.
As testament to the Zoo’s unique wildlife experience, Taronga Zoo won the 2010 best ‘Major Attraction’ at the NSW Tourism Industry Awards and also the 2011 'Best Major Attraction' at the Qantas Australian Tourism Awards.
Recently Completed Projects
The heritage-listed Main Entrance building has been restored to its former glory and new facilities and services include a new Zoo Shop, café, information and ticketing services. Zoo Friends also have a new residence in the historic Tram Shed building opposite the Edwardian Main Entrance, and this space has been transformed into a bright and welcoming area exclusively for them.
The plaza is a free for visitors and with the new ticketing process, guests can browse the Zoo Shop or grab a coffee before heading to the Zoo gateway where tickets are validated for entry. It's a great place to relax, plan their day and enjoy the new facilities before they embark on their Taronga adventure.
Backyard to Bush’s new play area
A newly renovated farm playground in Backyard to Bush has opened, providing space for kids to play and connect with the Zoo.
This unique playground features a water play area with a sandstone frog sculpture splashing water into a pond, timber sheep, dog sculptures and netted bridge and towers that children can climb and explore. The new playground is a great place for parents and children to enjoy during their Zoo visit.
The renovation of the 30-year-old Chimpanzee exhibit deliver great facilities for a growing group that includes several strong male chimps. The renovated exhibit now includes giant towers up to 12 metre high, a network of climbing ropes and hammocks for the chimps to enjoy, and new vantage points where visitors can get closer to the animals. See more here.
Tasmanian Devil Exhibit
Supporting our Tasmanian Devil breeding program, this new exhibit features outdoor and indoor viewing areas and allows visitors to see human impact on these creatures and how people can help Tasmanian Devil conservation.
Centrally located near the Taronga Food Market, the Parent Room is home to Taronga Zoo’s new private breast feeding rooms, baby change stations, baby food warming facilities and accessible toilets.
Gibbon Lawns and Viewing Deck
Incorporating new picnic areas, children’s play sculptures and native flora plantations, this newly developed area in the centre of the Zoo will provide a great place for visitors to rest and recharge during their Zoo visit.
While you’re at the Zoo, take a stroll on Taronga’s new scenic boardwalk between the African Safari and Big Cats Trail. The new circulation link takes visitors on a meandering walk through the treetops with spectacular harbour views from the African Waterhole past the Himalayan Tahrs perched on their rocky exhibit down to the Snow Leopard Mountain. Read more here.
Lemur Forest Adventure
The old seal pools (map ref 9H) area is currently being transformed into the Zoo’s latest exhibit, the Lemur Forest Adventure. This area will allow Zoo visitors to get up-close to the highly social Ring-tailed Lemurs, thanks to the walkthrough design of the exhibit, helping to bring people closer to the amazing world of wildlife.
The exciting new area will open in late 2013, just in time for the warmer weather which these primates love to sunbathe in!