In Stuttgart, a German city on the Neckar River, there is a unique park in the world: Wilhelma zoo and botanical garden. It is one of the zoos with the largest number of animal species in the world, as well as plants. Here all terrestrial environments are recreated with scientific rigor. The imposing and elegant building that is inside, the Moorish Villa, has been defined the Alhambra del Neckar thanks to its Moorish style walls by the architect Karl Ludwig von Zanth, who began the construction of the whole complex in 1842 for King William I of Württemberg. This ancient and precious park attracts many visitors every year and is particularly suitable for families. Let's find out together the visit to the Wilhelma zoo and botanical garden in Stuttgart: how to get there, prices and advice.
- Hours and prices
- What to see and how to visit Wilhelma zoo and botanical garden in Stuttgart
- Where is it and how to get there
- Useful tips for visiting the attraction
- Historical notes, curiosities and practical info: what to know in brief
- User questions and comments
Hours and prices
Attention, after 16:00 all ticket offices are closed and it is necessary to buy the ticket in the special automatic machines at the entrance gates, which only accept cash up to € 20,00.
- the main entrance gates on Neckartalstraße are open from 08:15 to 20:00 in summer. The areas dedicated to animals close at 18 pm, the aquarium and the Amazon area at 45 pm. In winter the gates close at 19pm.
- Best time to avoid queues: when it opens, then at 8:15
- € 20,00 in summer - in winter or after 16:00 the ticket costs € 15,00
- Reductions: children aged 6 to 17 € 8,00 - € 5,00 in the evening; students aged 18 to 28 € 13,00- € 10,00. A parent with a child up to 17 years single day ticket € 25,00
- Free: children under 6 years
What to see and how to visit Wilhelma zoo and botanical garden in Stuttgart
The Wilhelma zoo and botanical garden it covers a very large area and is divided into various sections dedicated to plants and animals, which intersect with each other according to the needs of the living organisms that have absolute priority here. Let's see what the multiple areas are.
The Monkey House
In 2013 this special was inaugurated area dedicated to two species of African monkeys, the gorilla and the bonobo. In this new arrangement, under the constant care of zoologists, the monkeys have much more space within an environment suited to them. There is also a nursery for the little ones.
The African Ungulates
The area dedicated to all those animals of the African continent that have hooves: zebras, gazelles, wild asses of Somalia, and many others, each of them inserted in their specific environment that represents the whole of Africa.
Bears and animals of the mountains
This incredible environment has been recreated through hidden rocks and channels, so each section is not divided, but connected to the others. You will really feel like you are catapulted into the mountains! There are bears, wolves, mountain goats, who coexist peacefully in their environment. Separate from them, the section dedicated to polar bears, who dive into their tank and, below it, you can see them swimming peacefully.
One of the most spectacular areas. It is divided into 3 areas, there are the tanks of the Mediterranean Sea, those of the North Sea and the Terrarium with the crocodile area. Between the two seasthere are also tanks dedicated to river fish. In total, there are more than 600 species of fish and invertebrates such as sponges and corals. The tank, inside the Terrarium, dedicated to the fish of South America is particularly colorful.
Pachyderms and other non-African ungulates
In this area bordering the farm live, among others, beautiful specimens of Asian elephants, each with its own name. One of the elephants that died in 2010, Vilja, born in 1948, was considered to be the longest-lived Asian elephant in the world. There are also the great Indian rhinos, hippos and the tapir house and, difficult even for zoologists to classify, the so-called takin animals, originating in the Himalayas: half goats, half cattle.
In this incredible and sometimes frightening section of the zoo live insects, scorpions, millipedes, spiders, but also the splendid and colorful butterflies, in the hall dedicated to them in the center of the insectarium.
The House of Predators
Here are hosted all those big cats with intense eyes, tigers, cheetahs, lions. In fact, even bears are predatory animals, this area is therefore specific for felines with lethal teeth
The demonstration farm
The area most loved by children! Here in fact they can see donkeys, goats, bunnies, cows, pigs of various species, hens. Inside the farm there is a real show that tells the life of these animals and their functions.
The animals of South America
Here live the animals coming in particular from the Andes, the vicuna, a kind of Andean camel, alpacas, rheas, particular birds that resemble the ostrich, and many others.
Many colorful bird species are housed within the Amazon area, which we will get to know better with plants, others are in particular aviaries dedicated to predatory birds. The common area consists of a huge aviary within which 4 paths intersect on which the visitor feels completely immersed in the environment, while the birds fly over him. Other aviaries are housed in dedicated areas depending on the climate.
The Amazon area
This important section of the botanical garden naturally also includes animals, such as birds that live in trees, and recreates the rainforest environment exactly as we know it, with over 350 species and 2.000 plants. The constant temperature between 25 ° and 28 ° and humidity at 80% allows trees and lianas to proliferate.
The House of Azaleas
Azaleas are left outside, free to explode into exceptionally colorful bloom from March onwards. During the autumn and winter months, they are brought into their home, where the temperature is kept constant.
The Cactus Dome and the Succulent House
A true paradise for lovers of cacti and succulents, from the smallest specimens to the largest that grow in desert areas around the world. Here, too, the temperature is regulated according to the needs of the cacti.
The House of the Camellias or Casa fuxia
This building that explodes with bright colors could not be called otherwise. Some plants are 160 years old and they were already here during the reign of King William I.
The Moorish Villa
This splendid Arabian-style villa, with its garden, it is the main building of the park and was once the residence of King William I. Today it houses a large number of tropical plants. Here you will find Wilhelma's most famous plant, called La Diva, a huge specimen native to the island of Sumatra, Amorphophallus titanum. The flowers of this plant can weigh up to 75 kg.
The Tropical Area
Within the tropical area there are further divisions, including the one dedicated to the wonderful orchids, the one for the cultivation of tropical plants such as coffee, cocoa, pineapple, coconut and many others, and finally the greenhouse dedicated to tropical ferns.
The winter garden
One of the historic greenhouses, built in the center of the avenue that leads to the garden of the Villa Moresca from the main entrance. The ground is covered with a carpet of selaginella and among this there are numerous potted plants, like the daffodils, the cyclamen, but there are also very tall palms and banana trees. The central flowerbed reproduces the various continents through their plants.
Where is it and how to get there
- On foot: Wilhelma is a 20-30 minute walk from Bad Cannstatt metro station in Stuttgart or Nordbanhof, where trains also arrive - Get directions
- By bus: bus lines 400-52-N56 arrive at the Rosesteinbrucke stop, 4 meters from the river side entrance
- By metro: at the Wilhelma stop, in front of the main gate on the river side, the U14 metro line arrives, at the Rosensteinbrucke stop the lines U14-U13-U16.
Useful tips for visiting the attraction
- Get up early: the ideal would be to reach the entrance by 08:00 am;
- Buy the city card: if you are interested in visiting other museums or attractions in the city, you can buy the city card and save on admissions
- Watch out for restrictions: Some attractions and museums are not allowed to bring water or food - make sure you don't have any with you
- Minimum time: we advise you to consider a minimum of 4 hours for the visit. The ideal would be to be able to dedicate a day
Historical notes, curiosities and practical info: what to know in brief
This complex was once the private residence of King William I, inaugurated during the marriage of Crown Prince Charles with the daughter of Tsar Nicholas I in the year 1846. On the king's death in 1880, however, the garden opened to the public for the first time, becoming the de facto property of the Land of Württemberg after the fall of the monarchy in 1919. The first animals began to arrive after the Second World War. Starting from the main entrance, up to the Villa Moresca, every detail was designed for the King in the Moorish style in vogue at the time and to welcome its guests worthily.
- The Moorish reception room: it was a separate building, connected to the villa through the garden. It was a splendid complex, today unfortunately largely damaged by the bombings of the Second World War, which referred to distant and exotic places. The guests of the King, to reach the building, had to walk through the covered avenue that still today crosses the garden, one of the most loved parts by visitors. Inside the reception room today there is the Aquarium and the Terrarium.
- The main entrance is located on Neckartalstraße: its gates remain open in the summer until 20:00, so we advise you to take this entrance and exit as a reference. At the entrance, on your left, there is the parking lot, and on the right the Wilhelma Shop to buy souvenirs. The main building is located in the center of the garden, on the right, surrounded by the main attractions, the Amazon Area, the Aquarium, the one dedicated to Africa, while African elephants and ungulates can be found in the area at the bottom of the park.
- The Rosesteinpark ticket office: it is only open until 16:00, while the one on Pragstrasse opens only on holidays and on weekends.