Whether you like your animals fluffy or ferocious, there's something that fits the bill at Barcelona Zoo. Sitting on 35 acres (14 hectares) inside Parc de la Ciutadella, there are 7,000 animals and 400 different species that call the zoo home, with everything from dolphins to rhinoceros living in quarters that mimic natural habitats.
This century-old zoo, opened in 1892, is one of Barcelona’s most family-friendly attractions and a great place to spend the day outdoors. Visitors can buy a standard admission ticket to the zoo or opt for the Barcelona Pass, which includes free entrance to the zoo, as well as other top attractions, such as the Barcelona Museum of Contemporary Art, Poble Espanyol, Casa Mila and Casa Batllo, and L’Aquarium Barcelona.
Many walking, cycling, and Segway tours of Old Town pass the zoo entrance.
Things to Know Before You Go
- Barcelona Zoo is a must-visit for families traveling with children.
- Buy your ticket online and skip the queues at the zoo.
- Wear comfortable shoes and be prepared to do a lot of walking.
- Don’t forget sunscreen, sunglasses, and a hat.
How to Get There
You can reach the zoo on foot from just about anywhere in the old city. To get there by public transportation, take the Metro to Vila Olimpica (line 4) or Arc de Triomf (line 1). The Ciutadella–Vila Olimpica tram also stops at the zoo, as do several public buses.
When to Get There
Barcelona Zoo is open daily throughout the year, but the best time to visit is during the shoulder season (spring and autumn) when weather is not too hot and the zoo not too crowded. If you’re visiting in peak season (July and August), plan to arrive first thing in the morning.
Native Fauna of Barcelona
While Barcelona Zoo is best known for its star residents, such as lions, hippos, and elephants, it’s also a great place to learn about native fauna. The Garden of Biodiversity features numerous native plants, as well as a small lake, where local wildlife like Iberian tree frogs, midwife toads, and Mediterranean tree frogs, can take shelter.