Sri Venkateswara Zoological Park Tirupati is the second largest zoological park in Asia and is located on the outskirts of the town of Tirupati. It is a perfect place for the nature lovers and those who love wildlife. I decided to visit the park and reached there at 10.00 am. The park is open to the visitors from 8.00 am to 6.00 pm during the summer months and from 9.00 am to 5.00 pm during the winter times. The entry fee is Rs.5 per person, and for children it is Rs. 2 per child. At the entrance there was a statue of Lord Ganesha.
The park was very large, covering an area of 22 sq km. and inhabited a large number of animals and birds. It was established in 1987 and is at the foot of the Seshachalam hills. The wide variety of flora and fauna here makes it one of the best scenic places you have ever seen. Here the animals are allowed to live in their natural habitats instead of being caged and cramped into one place.
One of the interesting features of the park was that all the animals here have been mentioned in the old scriptures of India. You do not see any foreign species of animals here. The zoo has different areas where different animals are put and each area is named from Indian mythology. For example, Kishkindha in Ramayana was the place where the Vanaras lived. So in the park you see rhesus macaque, bonnet macaque and stumptailed macaque in area named Kishkindha. In Karthikeya Van various species of peacocks are found. Similarly Makara Vaman inhabited crocodiles, Koorma tortoise and Jambavantha Vanam inhabited bear. Tigers were seen in Shakti Vanam and elephants in Airavatha Vanam. The enclosures were birds were put were named Garuda Vanam.
I could see very few cages in the park. Most of the animals were separated from each other by dry or wet moats. Sri Venkateswara Zoological Park was one of the best and well kept zoo I have ever visited and I spent a few happy hours at the zoo watching the animals.