The KOŠICE Zoo has it most successful ever high season this year, as through August it topped its 2011 attendance record of 182,000 visitors by 6,000 people. About 20 percent of the customers are foreigners, most from neighbouring countries or elsewhere in Europe, but this year has also seen visits by natives of Israel, Bangladesh, Japan and elsewhere.
“Visitors are coming, especially after the opening of DinoPark in June,” Eva Malešová, chief of the education and marketing at the zoo, told the TASR newswire. “Another attraction – especially for families with children – has been the broader variety of species on display and almost a hundred cubs being born this year," she said. Among the most important additions from the point of view of experts were the Humboldt penguins (now a flock of 13), barbary macaques (bred for the first time in Košice), guanacos (a type of llama born for the first time after 6 years) and one Przewalski's foal. The Košice Zoo is helping to re-introduce this species in Mongolia.
Visitors to Košice during its year as the European City of Culture are also attracted by the variety of accompanying events and programmes.
“The 'A Night in the Zoo' event has been quite successful, but the biggest draw has been the 'City Camp'," Malešová said. “We weren’t able to satisfy all the people interested – even after six sessions," she said of the camp, which organises daily activities for children during summer months. Another popular attraction, the DinoPark also offers children a paleontological playground and the chance to watch 3D movies.