Saigon Zoo And Botanical Garden

Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam

Saigon Zoo And Botanical Garden

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The Saigon Zoo and Botanical Gardens (French: Jardin botanique et zoologique de Saïgon, Vietnamese: Thảo Cầm Viên Sài Gòn), established in 1864, is Vietnam's largest zoo and botanical garden. Located on Nguyen Binh Khiem Street in District 1, Ho Chi Minh City, it is home to over a hundred species of mammals, reptiles and birds, as well as many rare orchids and ornamental plants. Also within the grounds is the Museum of Vietnamese History, housing some 25,000 artifacts of history, culture and ethnography of South Vietnam. The grounds also include a temple to the Hung Kings (formerly a monument to Indochinese soldiers who died for France during World War I). Other parts of the zoo are divided into animal and plant conservation areas, an orchid garden, and an amusement park.

On March 23, 1864, Admiral Pierre-Paul de La Grandière, commander of French forces in Cochinchina, commissioned the building of a zoo in Saigon. Malacologist Louis Germain was named the director of the project on March 28, 1865. Construction started on 12 hectares (30 acres) northeast of Thi Nghe Channel, and the zoo occupied 20 hectares (49 acres) by the end of 1865. On February 17, 1869 the zoo opened to the public, and today the Saigon Zoo is one of the oldest continuously operating zoos in the world.

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