Results 1-7of 7 Reviews
London, United Kingdom
August 16, 2011
From journal Amazing Amsterdam
Amsterdam, North Holland, Netherlands
December 14, 2010
Things to do in Amsterdam,
Amsterdam a great city
Los Angeles, Colorado
March 10, 2008
by Emily Marie
Bronx, New York
December 2, 2003
One thing that struck me was how many of the large exhibits were so unnatural-looking. The monkeys and goats are on concrete islands with little that would make me believe the animals were in their natural habitats. As someone who believes somewhat in animal rights (I'm no PETA person though, ;)), I felt bad for these animals.
When I went (May, 2003), many of the buildings were undergoing renovations. The elephant house for instance was closed, so I didn't get to see everything.
This may sound like a negative review, but there was a number of fun and cool stuff here as well. Artis seemed to have a nice "collection" of penguins and kangaroos, and there is a grand old building which houses the aquarium and natural-history-style museum. There are skeletons and skulls in this section, as well as some child artwork and a small section with panoramas. The aquarium is small, but one part I thought was really interesting was a mock-canal, made out to look like one of the regular Amsterdam canals. The water itself is cleaner although there is the occasional license plate thrown in for the fish to swim around.
Artis considers itself to have five focal points within its gates, the zoo and aquarium are a couple of them, as are geological studies (which I didn't experience while there), a planetarium and a botanical garden. With that latter part in mind, there is a nice little Japanese rock garden right near the aquarium.
The planetarium is right near the entrance to the park. The shows are free, but they are in Dutch. I didn't inquire about translations, as I wanted to practice my Dutch a little. Around the planetarium theater are astronomical displays, many of which are hands-on.
Artis as a stand-alone event may leave a bit to be desired. The size of the park and the exhibits make this one of the more dull zoos I have been to. But it is a nice time, especially on a nice day. What I found to be a good day was doing the zoo and the Dutch Resistance Museum in the span of an afternoon. These two sites are not even a block apart from one another, and both are small but interesting in their own ways. For those who might get overwhelmed by the Nazi aspects of the Resistance Museum, Artis should be a good way to relax afterwards.
From journal It's much more than vice city
Clifton, New Jersey
September 25, 2003
Artis is one of the older zoos in Europe and you will note that many of the buildings are over 100 years old. That means that the exhibits tend to be smaller than those of larger zoos in the United States. As you enter, the path begins on the left with the planetarium and the camel exhibit. The focus here is on keeping a large selection of animals, rather than big numbers of a specific type. You will see the favorites: lions, giraffes, zebras, polar bears and sea lions. The exhibits are self-guided. There are no 'shows' or guided tours available of Artis and the size of the park means that the paths and exhibit houses are laid closely together, making an easy walk.
The highlight for me was the aquarium, as I am a fish geek. Artis has a varied selection of European and American freshwater species, North Sea saltwater species and Reef fish. None of the tanks are extremely large (no great white sharks), but they are all well maintained and stocked. The aquarium is nice retreat from an overly hot day, as it is dark and cool. There are 2 levels to the aquarium; follow the signs and you will not get lost!
There are food stands and a cafe to meet your snacking needs on site and many restaurants in the surrounding area. Artis is also quite close to the NEMO science museum, which could make for a full day of fun for the kids!
From journal A Party Girl's Guide to Amsterdam
The Hague, China
March 22, 2003
See how Dutch families enjoy the day out with their children, and imagine how ladies used to stroll along the paths with their parasols in the previous century. Like the Botanical Garden, the zoo is a place that dates back to the time the Netherlands was a shipping world power.
Watch out for the overhead passage for apes - you just might catch one peeing on an unsuspecting passerby. The aquarium is a huge, darkened hall of glowing fish of all sizes. It's quite eerie and spectacular.
Head for the new cafeteria for a break when you need to recharge. Give yourself two to three hours to enjoy the zoo.
From journal Weekend in Amsterdam
March 10, 2002
Artis also has a fair collection of big cats. At the moment a couple of young male lions are separated from the females to get the two groups acquainted to each other. The last remaining Siberian tiger unfortunately died recently. It is said it died because it missed its partner, who died two years earlier. The finest specimen in my humble opinion is the snowy panther.
In the back of the zoo you will find de always amusing see lions and otters. Next to them are the bears, two majestic polar bears and a mother Sloth bear and its two young, born in spring 1999.
The main attraction is still to come: in a beautiful old building an enormous aquarium is built. You will encounter many fish from all around the globe. In a few large basins, a couple of biotopes are simulated. Among them is an Amsterdam canal, with its submerged bicycles. The one who is able to spot the deadly stonefish has to let me know! Although I have spent much time staring in its basin I haven’t been able to spot it yet, camouflaged as it is.
When your time is short I wouldn’t recommend going to Artis, it will at least cost you half a day and there are a few other sites you really shouldn’t miss. But if you have plenty of time, friendly Artis is a good place to be on a beautiful sunny spring morning.
From journal An insiders view on Amsterdam