Ranked 14 among Places to Visit in Darjeeling
Ideal Time: 4 Hours
The Padmaja Naidu Zoological Park is a splendid enclosure in Darjeeling housing a wide variety of animals. Also known as Darjeeling Zoo, this is a haven for animals of all kinds and a huge centre of attraction for animal lovers and nature enthusiasts. The zoo is known internationally for its breeding and conservation programs and also includes an off-display breeding centre for snow leopards and red pandas. In addition to these rarer species, the zoo is also enriched with Asiatic black bear, barking deer, leopards, blue and yellow Macaw, Eastern Pangolin, Pheasant, Himalayan Monal, Himalayan Wolf, Lady Amherst, Leopard Cat, Macaw, Red Jungle Fowl, Red Panda, Royal Bengal Tiger, Sambar Deer, Temminck's Tragopan, Yak, and many more.
This attraction was set up in 1958 and was named after the former governor of West Bengal, Padmaja Naidu, who was also the daughter of Sarojini Naidu. Witha n average elevation of a whopping 7000 feet, it is the largest high altitude zoo in India. The Padmaja Naidu Zoological Park specializes in breeding animals adapted to alpine conditions and has successful captive breeding programs for the snow leopard, the critically endangered Himalayan wolf and the red panda. The zoo serves as the central hub for Central Zoo Authority of India's red panda program and is a member of the World Association of Zoos and Aquariums. Owing to its unyielding efforts to repopulate these endangered species, the Darjeeling Zoo has been awarded the prestigious honour of "The Earth Heroes" in 2014 out of over 300 zoos worldwide.
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