Thursday, March 14, 2013

Family Trip to Avilon Zoo

"We're going to the zoo this weekend" Richie told me one afternoon. Yay! Family day! Turns out the whole family was going to Avilon Zoo as a way to celebrate Rain's cousin's birthday. Rain's Bito and Bita (grandmother and grandfather), Titos and Titas (uncles and aunts), and cousins. This was going to be fun!

Truthfully, I have mixed feelings about zoos. It think its good that people can go to a place to see and learn about fascinating animals that you don't see in the city everyday. But at the same time I feel bad for the animals locked up in cages when they should be living freely in their natural habitats. Either way, the point was that we had an exciting trip that we can spend with the whole family, and I was excited for Rain's first encounter with amazing animals, that is if she would stay conscious for the whole duration of the trip. She has a notorious urge of napping exactly at the peak of excitement of a certain event. Like the first 2 hours of her 1st birthday celebration (asleep), her 1st Christmas during gift opening (asleep), new year fireworks (asleep), the list goes on.

Come Saturday, we were on the way to Avilon Zoo. Two vans in convoy. One van for all the parents (me and Richie, and then my sisters in law and their hubbies) and then another van for my mom and dad in law and the kids. It was a fun road trip!

I took us around an hour or so from Valley Golf Antipolo to Rodriguez, Rizal. The outside look simple and there were a lot of buses. Uh-oh. Looks like there was a field trip. I was secretly hoping it wasn't crowded inside. Little did I know that the place was huuuge! 7.5 hectares of animal world! I had no idea! In fact it was my first time to hear of Avilon Zoo. Oh and by the way, as predicted, the minute we set foot at the entrance of the zoo, Rain fell asleep. Classic Rain.

Classic Rain. Fell asleep as soon as we got there!

So we got tickets by the entrance. P400 per adult, and P300 per child who's height do not reach the counter's level. It was only at this moment when Richie and I hoped and prayed that our height would be below the counter so we would only be charged P300 hehehe. (P100 din yun no!)Kidding. If you've met us you would know that Richie wouldn't exactly be picked for a basketball legue, nor would I be in the running to be the next America's Top Model (Oops. Philippine's Top Model pala)

The cashier asked our group if we wanted to hire a tourist so there would be someone to take us around and give us facts about the animals. We were contemplating of whether or not to get because it was quite expensive (P400) and we were worried the kids might just not pay attention. But my in laws went ahead and got the tourist anyway. And I'm glad they did because I'm pretty sure we would have gotten lost hehe.

With Ate Tour guide

The tourist told us that the whole tour would take roughly 45 minutes. Whoa! Suddenly I got jealous of Rain laying comfortably in her stroller. (Yes it's THAT big. Still can't get over it) I was just so glad I was wearing shorts, a comfortable t-shirt, and super comfy flats. So while the little Rainbow was asleep in her stroller, I took out my trusty camera and switched from mommy to paparazzi mode.

Note: Since there are a loooot of animals, please forgive me for not remembering the names of the animals and since I had like a hundred photos taken during this trip, I have only chosen some and combined them into collages hehe.

Watching the huge fishes on the lake upon entering

Someone was not too thrilled about the No Food policy

Feeding Station. Feed the guinea pigs!
I think you can also feed these goats and the little pony.

Beautiful birds
We were very fortunate to see this beautiful peacock proudly displaying his beautiful tail. It really is fascinating in real life!

My favorite shot! This deserves a non-collage hehe

Napping pigs, huge swimming rodents, and a huge turtle! (One of the many!)

Beautiful felines!
Funny Orangutan ready for his photoshoot!

He looks like "The Wise One"
Thank God there was another refreshment / canteen area in the middle of the zoo!
We took a short rest here and had some hotdogs and drinks

But the tour had to go on...

A Hippo taking a dip!

They have a Black Bear (they were all hiding and asleep except for this one)
 and a Hyena (It wasn't laughing)

Super huge Croc! Not so obvious in this photo but he really is! Same species as Lolong!

Other Snappy Crocs!

More exotic birds!

It was surprising how much animals they had. I didn't get to take photos of all. Was too exhausted also since Rain woke up in the middle of the tour (somewhere between the birds and the turtles). Apparently it has one if the most diverse species collection in the Philippines.

Rain is awake! Yay! Playing peek-a-boo with Daddy

It was a surprisingly nice zoo. I just wish they would improve some of the cages more. I remember seeing some trash laying around. I guess the number of maintenance staff isn't enough for the size of the zoo? The petting zoo added a nice touch where the kids can interact with some animals. And the best highlight of it all for me was Trixie, whom you can see hanging out and posing by the Feeding Station area :-)

Group shots with Trixie! Sayang we should have done a jump shot haha!

Maybe Trixie reads his blog too?
I also appreciate the fact that you can bring in your own food and not have to pay for any corkage (well they didn't charge us anything but a reader just commented that they were charged for their Jollibee baon when they went. So now I'm not sure hehe). Anyway, my mother in law prepared tons of sandwiches and drinks for us that we devoured after the tour. As always, good thinking mom! :-)

Photo of their main canteen.

I have to admit, it was very tiring. It was a huge place, it was a hot day, and no trams that you can take inside. Just a lot of walking. In fact i had a bad headache right after the tour. To me it was like a huge theme park, but instead of rides, you'll see animals. If you plan a trip here with your kids, just make sure you wear something very comfortable, if it's a hot day bring hats and put on sun block. Definitely bring extra shirts for the kids. Bring fans, lots of water, and maybe an umbrella in case it rains. And f course hand sanitizes.

Exhausted! But pose parin!
Happy grandchildren! 

I was glad we were all able to go out for a family day in a not-so-far place. We all enjoyed seeing the kids have fun especially the birthday boy Gaeli!

Rain's Bito and Bita "Celebrating Life" :-)
Thank you Bito and Bita for this unforgettable family trip! 

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  1. Hope our family could go there too. :) My bro and sis would go crazy! :)

    1. Yeah plan it! :-) For sure they'll enjoy! :-)

  2. wow Ms. Rina buti pa sa inyo 45mins ang whole tour.. samin inabot ng 2hours si ate tour guide samin.
    saka may bayad un pizza at jollibee na dala namin noon..
    ang saya talaga sa avilon zoo at ndi ko sya makakalimutan ksi nagkasakit sa paa un panganay ko.
    super worth it ang bayad ksi super linis at ndi sya mabaho.. unlike other zoos.

    1. Ay talaga? Hmmm... when kayo nagpunta? Bakit may bayad baon? Daya naman! hehehe :-) hala baka may bayad nga nakatakas lang kami? hahaha joke! yep kahit kakapagod, masaya naman no?:)

      thanks Ms. Istin! :-)

  3. is there an elephant? :)

    1. Hi! :-) Hmmm... I don't recall seeing one :( I was also hoping to see a giraffe but they didn't have. But it's okay they have a lot of other animals there :-) What I posted isn't even half of it :-)

  4. We also went here when my daughter had a school field trip a few years ago. It was indeed tiring, but a lot of fun just the same, especially since my daughter had a great time looking at all the animals, and she even rode on a pony. :)

    1. Waaaah! We didn't get to ride on a pony :(

  5. aww, such a nice family bonding! been at avilon 3 years ago for my youngest son'd field trip. di ako masyado nag enjoy because kulang ang family. naiwan si ate, kuya at tatay sa bahay.

    1. Awww oo mas masaya pag complete! di bale you can always plan another trip with the whole family! :-)

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  8. Hello po, eto po b ung zoo na may squirrel? at maraming gagambang malaki?