Padmaja Naidu Himalayan Zoological Park


This zoo, one of India’s better ones, was established in 1958 to study, conserve and preserve Himalayan fauna. Housed within its rocky and forested environment are species such as Asiatic black bear, clouded leopard, red panda and Himalayan wolf. The zoo and its snow-leopard breeding centre (closed to the public) are home to the world’s largest captive population of snow leopards (currently 11). It's a reasonably pleasant 2km walk, mostly downhill, northwest from Chowrasta.

Lonely Planet's must-see attractions

Nearby Darjeeling attractions

1. Himalayan Mountaineering Institute

0.18 MILES

Within the zoo precinct, the prestigious HMI was founded in 1954 and has provided training for some of India’s leading mountaineers. Its fascinating…

2. Rangit Valley Ropeway

0.36 MILES

The scenic Rangit Valley cable car was out of action at research time due to maintenance and an administrative/legal hiatus. Ask at your accommodation…

3. Happy Valley Tea Estate

0.41 MILES

This 1854 estate on the northwest edge of town is a good place to learn about tea, especially when plucking and processing are in progress (March to…

4. Tibetan Refugee Self-Help Centre

0.74 MILES

Established in 1959, this refugee centre includes a Tibetan Buddhist temple, workshops producing carpets, woodcarvings, wool and woollen items, plus a…

5. Lloyd Botanic Garden

0.91 MILES

These half-hidden gardens contain an impressive collection of Himalayan plants, most famously orchids and rhododendrons. Follow the signs down Loch Nagar…

6. Observatory Hill

0.96 MILES

The hill rising above Chowrasta is home to several much-visited temples, approached through a flurry of colourful prayer flags and hanging bells. The main…

7. Bhutia Busty Gompa

0.97 MILES

This temple originally stood on Observatory Hill, but was rebuilt in its present location in the 19th century. It houses fine murals depicting the life of…