Making the most of a half-empty ABQ BioPark Zoo

I never really make it a point to visit zoos while traveling. There’s a zoo in Los Angeles (where I live), as well as in other cities I could visit pretty easily. I’m also generally just not a zoo person.

So why did I go to the zoo in Albuquerque?

In my post about how I wound up in New Mexico’s largest city, I wrote about how it was deemed one of the most violent cities in the United States. And because I was hoping to rely on public transportation (which kind of sucked), what I could do within walking distance of the hostel I stayed at was limited.

Going to the zoo was my final attempt to get to an intriguing attraction on foot. It was only 0.7 miles away from the hostel, so I grabbed my daypack, slipped my feet into my shoes, and started walking.

My decision to spend $12.50 on the zoo was largely inspired by a cool Instagram photo I saw that was geotagged somewhere in there.

Sadly, I never found that place.

I was also hopeful that the zoo would be interesting since it’s got a 4-star rating on Yelp.

After I paid for a ticket in front, I was greeted with this nice scene:

Albuquerque zoo Albuquerque zoo

Right behind that was a group of flamingos that I decided to watch for a couple of minutes.

Albuquerque zoo

Then I wandered around the grounds without a real plan other than to observe animals and  find aesthetically pleasing scenery to photograph. Fortunately, it had been awhile since I’d been to a zoo, so there was something novel about being at ABQ BioPark Zoo.

Albuquerque zoo

I’m going to guess that this next thing I’m about to mention was because of the weather… but it seemed like half of the animals in the zoo were missing!

I walked up to a number of glass windows and mesh fences to find no gorillas, no koalas, no giraffes, and no bunch of other animals… It was a huge bummer, especially because the guy in front who swiped my card didn’t even bother to tell me that a good portion of the exhibits were gone or incomplete.

This is why there aren’t a lot of photos in this post.

I always try to make the best of whatever situation I’m in, so I did spend time watching the Tasmanian devil run back and forth in it’s little confined space; I observed vultures looking at me fiercely and I took a photo of the ducks there, since there were so many of them.

Albuquerque zoo

Overall, I’m sure the zoo would’ve been much more fun if all the animals were there. It really would just have been nice if I had been warned before giving the dude my credit card.

After seeing all I could see there, I decided to request for an Uber to get back because walking through the neighborhood from the hostel felt just a little bit creepy.

Although the experience wasn’t what I had hoped it could’ve been, I would give it another shot if I ever got the chance to go when all the animals are in their spaces. If you like zoos and/or are traveling with small children, ABQ BioPark Zoo is a good place to go in Albuquerque.

One thought on “Making the most of a half-empty ABQ BioPark Zoo

Leave a Reply