The Zurich Zoo, or Zurich Zoologischer Garten, is one of the finest in Europe. It opened in 1920 about 5km west of the city center. Today more than 2,000 animals of more than 300 species call this zoo home. It's located in the middle of a park, so there's a lot of open space. All the zoo standards are here: lions, tigers, elephants, etc.
The Masoala rain forest is an 11,000 square meter domed enclosure that recreates conditions of Madagascar's rainforest. This unique habitat is definitely the zoo's best attraction. There are lemurs, a bevy of frogs, and endangered birds, plus a lot of unique flora. Another highlight is the penguin parade. From November through February at 13:30, assuming the temperature is below 10C, the zoo's penguins take a waddle around the zoo. If you can bare the cold, this is a unique opportunity to get up close to some penguins.
The Zurich Zoo is a little on the small side, but as they say quality over quantity. The animals are treated well, and the zoo's main goal is conservation. This is also a great place to take kids. It can be pricey, but it'd definitely worth it for animal lovers. Take note that things can get chaotic and crowded on the weekends, and the cafes are way overpriced. It's easily accessible via tram.
Location: Zurichbergstrasse 221
Telephone: +41 044 254 2505
Hours: Open daily 09:00-17:00 (March through October); 09:00-17:00 (November through February)
Admission (online tickets):
CHF 22.00 Adults
CHF 16.00 Youth (16-25)
CHF 11.00 Children (6-16)