The Masaya Zoo – more commonly known as the National Zoo of Nicaragua – is a very interesting place to visit, and if you have the time to spare while on your trip through Nicaragua, it is advisable that you should set aside a day of your time to properly enjoy a walking tour of the zoo.
The Masaya Zoo is a hodge podge of animals from various places around the country and all have unique stories which come with them. Some are wild animals that the zoo is nursing back to health to release back into their natural habitats, some are rescued from poachers, hunters, animal trafficers, and sometimes even rescued from homes of people who have left Nicaragua and neglected to take their exotic pets with them.
The Masaya Zoo has rather humble installations, given that the zoo gets very little support from the government, however, you will be pleasantly surprised by how clean the establishment is, the care the animals are given, and the rustic surroundings which combine to make an attractive place to while away the afternoon. There are many private companies and individuals devoted to helping maintain the zoo open to the public, and donations are always welcome, so if you can spare a few coins for the upkeep of the zoo, it is much appreciated, but not required.
The Masaya Zoo is the largest zoo in all of Nicaragua, and has more than 600 different species of national plants, the majority being jungle type plants, and some domestic plants. There are also some specimens from the far corners of the globe such as the dark forrests of Africa, and the Rice Paddies of Asia. Some of the animals you can find on display at the Masaya Zoo are those which are critically in danger of becoming extinct, and can only find in sparse numbers in the darkest corners of Nicaragua.
The ambiance which is unique to the Masaya Zoo, is felt as soon as you are through the main gates. From that exact position it is possible to feel you have been transported into another realm, as you can hear the chatter of many kinds of birds, parrots, wild cats, and even jaguars. It really makes you feel as if you have exited the hustle and bustle of the human world, and have been transported directly into the jungle, where anything could happen.
The Masaya Zoo is home to more than 650 different species of animals you can find in Nicaragua, as well as animals from the far reaches of the globe such as Turkeys; a Bengal tiger; African lions; a mandril; a tiny chimpanzee; a green monkey;some emus and even some water buffalo.
The general public is even allowed to interact with some of the different animals of the Masaya Zoo. For example, under the watchful eye of a trainer, you can pet a lion, a Bengal tiger, or even feed the parrots.
So as you can see there is something of interest to all visitors to the Masaya Zoo.