The Rajiv Gandhi Zoological Park is situated at Katraj in Pune (just opposite to the Katraj Dairy). I had been to this place a couple of times earlier with my parents and found that it is a likeable destination for all.
The place consists of a zoo and a snake park surrounded by trees and a lake which also gives an opportunity for boating.
The park itself is of an area of 167 acres and the lake is of 42 acre. So the place is not a small one.
One Saturday afternoon when it was raining heavily we decided to try a trip to this place.
How to go:
I stay in Kharadi so all the routes for my trips start from here. You have to go towards Magarpatta and when you come across the Hadapsar crossing, take a right towards Swargate. Go through this road (NH 9). Once you reach the Swargate bus stand signal, take a left from there and go straight on this road. Once you see the Katraj Dairy on your right, you know that you have reached. There is a paid parking on the left of the road. This is the road map for us:
Though it was raining, we did not expect a huge crowd but we were wrong. There were so many enthusiastic people. Maharashtrians do like to enjoy in the rains, no matter what.
The commercialization around the park does suggest its popularity. There are many food stalls so eating is never a problem.
There is an entry fee of 10/- per person. We collected the ticket and entered the park.
On entering you can see a small island from where the road towards right goes to the zoo and the road to the left goes to the snake park. There is a straight road which goes to the lake.
We decided to cover the zoo first and then the snake park. There are many animals which are in good condition – a white tiger, a couple of royal bengal tigers, leopards, sloth bear, porcupine, jackal, wolf, spotted deer, black buck, antelopes, porcupine, nilgai, byson, gaur, elephants etc.
The best part of this zoo is the environment under which the animals are kept. They are not actually put into the cages, rather they are kept in open spaces with boundary walls surrounding that space. It gives you a somewhat natural feeling when you them.
These are some of the snaps of the animals.
We roamed around the whole zoo and then we headed towards the snake park. The snake park closes at 5.30 pm so better check your time before you plan a visit.
These are some of the snaps from the snake park, this is not only a snake park but also a reptile park where you can get to see various reptiles – cobra, python, viper, turtles, crocodiles, iguana etc.
After visiting the snake park, we went to visit the lake. Besides the lake there is a separate section for the birds.
This was a good half day outing, but you can also visit this place to relax. There are ample places to sit and just chill. Alternatively if you don’t like walking but need to see the zoo, there are small open cars available inside the zoo.
All in all it was a day well spent!!