After the success of the Kalaniyot 10K, we wanted to explore the area more, to continue our perfect day! After searching for local activities (to my extreme disappointment the nearby ostrich farm is closed to visitors on Fridays), a brief Google maps search led us to the Gvar’am Petting Zoo. At the entrance to the zoo, we found this cheerful sign:
which says that the entrance fee is 30 shekel for kids, and 15 shekel for adults. Initially I celebrated finding such a great deal. It took me a minute to realize that the adult entrance fee is cheaper because this is a petting zoo for small children. Sure enough, we were the only unaccompanied adults in the petting zoo.
The zoo had a variety of animals, from rabbits and chinchillas to a variety of birds. Birds both roamed free (uninterested in humans unless they had food) and in cages (to protect the humans):
Birds love me, probably because they sense that I do not reciprocate their feelings. The sun conures (middle), eager to bite me, made their presence known.
The zoo is also home to a variety of other animals that don’t yearn for human blood:
There was also an animal petting area, but this was 1) for children and 2) only offered rabbits, so no thanks. During our visit the zookeepers set out some cabbage for the goats, so as you see in the far right picture, several small children and I fed the goats! This was definitely a highlight of the experience for me. If I ever live in a more rural area with a backyard, I’d love to have a pet goat. Maybe one day…
If you’re in the center of Israel, I’m sure you can find a more conveniently-located zoo. However, if you happen to already be in the area, I highly recommend that you visit the Gvar’am Petting Zoo, with or without children.