At a distance of 4 km from Lucknow Junction, Lucknow Zoo or Nawab Wazid Ali Shah Prani Udyan is a zoological garden located in Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh. Earlier known as Prince of Wales Zoological Gardens, it is one of the famous zoological parks in Uttar Pradesh, and among the most interesting Lucknow sightseeing places.
The Prince of Wales Zoological Gardens was established in the year 1921 to commemorate the visit of the Prince of Wales to Lucknow and was named after him. The idea of establishing Zoological gardens at Lucknow emanated from Sir Harcourt Butler, the then Governor of the State. The complex was established in the 18th century by Nawab Nasiruddin Haider, the then Nawab of Awadh as a mango orchard. At that time it was known as Banarasi Bagh. In the year 2001, the zoological park was changed from Prince of Wales Zoological Gardens to Lucknow Zoological Garden and again renamed as Nawab Wajid Ali Shah Zoological Garden in the year 2015.
Covering an area of 71.6 acres, the zoo is home to 463 mammals, 298 birds, and 72 reptiles representing 97 species, including the royal Bengal tiger, white Bengal tiger, Asiatic lion, gray wolf, hoolock gibbon, Himalayan black bear, Indian rhinoceros, blackbuck, swamp deer, barking deer, hog deer, Asiatic elephant, giraffe, zebra, European otters, hill mynahs, giant squirrels, great pied hornbill, golden pheasant, silver pheasant, etc. The zoo is successfully breeding swamp deer, blackbuck, hog deer and barking deer, white tiger, Indian wolf, and several pheasants. It is one of the only two zoos in India to exhibit an orangutan, the other being the Kanpur Zoo.
Besides, the zoo contains a toy train since 1969 which is a gift from the Railway Board. With a track length of 1.5 km, the train consists of an engine and two coaches. Also, one can enjoy paddle boating that allows the visitors to recreate while visiting the animals. The other recent attraction of the zoo is the Butterfly Park which was opened in 2018. About 28 types of butterflies are presently seen in this park along with information about butterflies. The Nature Interpretation Centre located in the zoo organizes the 'Touch Table Programmes only on Friday to provide important information about the skins of various animals, eggs of birds and pheasants, the tusk of elephants, a plaster cast of tiger pug marks, and many other things.
State Museum, which is located in the premises of the zoo is also one of the attractions here. The museum was earlier situated in the Chattar Manzil and was shifted to this famous Lucknow Zoo in the year 1963. The museum consists of ancient copper, beads and other instruments and devices, pottery and bricks, Awadh sculptures, beautiful terracottas from Kaushambi, Mathura, Sravasti, and Bhitargaon whereas the Numismatic Section contains coins made of gold, silver, and copper, paper currency, and medals.
Timings: 8 AM - 5.30 PM, Closed on Monday
State Museum: 10.30 AM - 4.30 PM, Closed on Mondays & Public holidays
Entry: Rs. 60 for Adults, Rs. 30 for Children (Entry Ticket, Aquarium House, Nocturnal House, Nature Interpretation Centre are included), Rs. 50 for Camera, Rs. 25 for Battery Vehicle