The Assam State Zoo and Botanical Garden is unique and largest in its league in the North Eastern part of India. The zoo is located inside the Hengerbari Reserved Forest, situated in the outskirts of the city of Guwahati. There are more than a 100 species of birds and animals to be found in this zoo. It was established in the year 1957, after the conclusion of the 64th session of the Indian National Congress, where a few animals were exhibited, and it was necessary to provide them with a shelter when the conference ended. The zoo was made open for public viewing the next year. Later in the year 1982, a botanical garden was also added to it, along with a museum. The zoo also takes an active part in the rescue and rehabilitation of the animals, and even hosts social awareness programme around the city. The two combined together are often called the “Green Lung” of Guwahati. It has launched the animal adoption scheme recently in the year 2005.
The Assam State Zoo and Botanical Garden has about 895 animals belonging to 113 different species. Among them, some of the animals worth seeing are Tiger, Clouded Leopard, One-Horned Indian Rhinoceros, Himalayan Black Bear, Jungle Cat, Hoolock Gibbon, etc. Near the zoo, there are other places to visit, including the famous Kamakhya and Bhuvaneshwari Temple.
Getting to the zoo of Guwahati is quite easy because of its location. Buses and taxis are easily available on a regular basis to reach the destination.
In the summer the zoo remains open from 7.30 am - 4 pm and in the winter the timing changes to 8 am - 4.30 pm. It is better to avoid the summer and the monsoon season though, due to extreme heat and heavy rain. Therefore, the best time to visit the place will be during winter and spring.