Assam State Zoo cum Botanical Garden which is otherwise referred to as Guwahati Zoo is one of the largest zoos of this type in the northeastern zone of India. The zoo is widespread in an area of about 175 hectares (432 acres). It is located inside the territory of the Hengrabari Reserved Forest of Guwahati. This zoo acts as the homeland to more than 895 reptiles, birds and animals which represent approximately 113 species of birds and animals all over the world.
In 1957, they organized the 64th session of the Indian National Congress in Guwahati. During this period, the organizing committee arranged for an exhibition including a few birds and animals. Among them, there was a leopard cub by the name of Spotty who turned out to be the hot star. At the end of this meeting, they felt the need to establish a zoo in order to house those animals. They decided to transport those animals to the Japorigog destination located in the Hengrabari Reserve forest. The forest is situated in an area of about 130 hectares and hence it was to be sufficient enough to establish facilities that were necessary to house those animals. Thus, this Assam State Zoo came into existence in 1957 and was then opened to the public in 1958.
As the years rolled on, the zoo expanded its capacity and now hosts various species of eye-catching and mesmerizing exotic animals like Australian kangaroos, South America Llama, Jaguar and Puma, and African Giraffes, Ostriches, Zebras, Black and white Rhinos and Chimpanzees. These animals were bought to the Assam State Zoo cum Botanical Garden on mutual exchange with the respective countries with India’s indigenous species like Indian One-horned rhinoceros and other animals. Later on, the focus was shifted to Indian indigenous species and various captive breeding procedures were followed to increase their population. In 1959, they established a forest division in the name of Assam State Zoo Division and then this zoo was managed under the control of this division.
In 1982, they included a Museum and a botanical garden in this zoo and later on Assam State Zoo was referred to as The Assam State Zoo cum Botanical Garden. In the year 2002, they included another 45 hectares of land of Hengrabari Reserve Forest in this zoo and thus the overall space of this Assam State Zoo cum Botanical Garden became 175 hectares. In the year 2005, they launched Animal Adoption Scheme in this Assam State Zoo. Apart from being one of the region’s popular zoos and ex-situ centres for conservation, the zoo is also aimed to provide quality-based services and other facilities for the rescue and rehabilitation of the wild animals, awareness of nature and also responsible nature tourism.
The zoo also continues to be a repository for wildlife biodiversity and acts as a green lung for Guwahati city. They also strive to make this Assam State Zoo cum Botanical Garden to be the best of its kind with various educational and recreational facilities in the northeast zone of India.
This is one of the finest gardens in the northeastern region of India. There are about 345 indigenous species and 280 exotic species of plants. The zoo has displayed name plates for all interesting and striking species. The presence of endangered and rare species includes ladies slipper orchid, doum palm, pitcher plant and many more.
Timings & Tariffs
The zoo is open between 7 am and 4.30 pm on all days except Friday. During the winter season, the visiting time is between 8 am and 4 pm.
The important highlights of this Assam State Zoo cum Botanical Garden are the Natural forest, Herbarium collection, Botanical Garden, Reptile House, Museum and Animal exhibits. Visitors can get refreshed by using various amenities like juice stalls, pointers, resting shelters, garbage bins, toilet facilities, signage etc.