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01st Jun 2020

Dublin Zoo has announced that it will reopen to the public tomorrow

James Fenton

Dublin Zoo has announced that it will reopen to the public from tomorrow, Tuesday June 2.

The news was confirmed this afternoon in a statement which says: ‘Dublin Zoo today announced it will reopen to the public on June 2 in a reduced capacity and under new strict health and safety protocols.’

That reduced capacity will mean a limit of 500 people in two daily slots, as explained here: ‘Dublin Zoo is initially limiting its daily allowance of visitors to two daily slots with 500 people maximum in each session, less than 10% of usual capacity at any one time. The morning session will run from 9.30am -1pm and an afternoon session from 2pm to 5.30pm.’

The statement adds that ‘visitors will travel through Dublin Zoo by following a new outdoor, one-way walking route which reinforces strict social distancing. The outdoor route, also known as the Dublin Zoo Outdoor Safari Trail, will be noted on a map which will be available to all visitors.

‘Hand sanitiser stations will be available and there will be visible signage reinforcing physical distancing, hand-hygiene, coughing/sneezing etiquette. A new, enhanced cleaning regime has also been implemented and all Dublin Zoo personnel will be provided with, and trained in the safe and appropriate use of, relevant Personal Protective Equipment.’

Speaking on the reopening of Dublin Zoo for the first time since March 12, Director of Dublin Zoo, Leo Oosterweghel explained that patrons will have to pre-book if they wish to visit:

‘We are pleased to announce that Dublin Zoo will reopen its doors on June 2nd, 2020 under new stringent health and safety protocols,’ he said. ‘As we approach this new chapter of our history with cautious optimism, our priority during this reopening phase will be to ensure the health, safety and wellbeing of our staff, visitors and the continued provision of world-class animal care. This will be a careful, phased reopening where we limit the number of entrants at any given time whilst establishing strict social distancing and hygiene measures, to protect both Dublin Zoo visitors and staff.

‘These past weeks have been a very challenging time for Dublin Zoo, but I would like to take this opportunity to thank the public for the thousands of messages we have received extending their love and support to us.

‘In the same vein, we have received numerous queries regarding our reopening date and while we are pleased to announce it will be June 2, it is important to stress that this is a trial period for Dublin Zoo and patience and understanding will be required from visitors as we navigate our new pre-booking system, two daily opening sessions and one-way walking route. ‘

We have worked hard to ensure Dublin Zoo can once again reopen to the public, but health and safety come first, and we ask all visitors to bear that in mind when coming to see us. We would also like to strongly advise anyone considering a visit to Dublin Zoo that they check current government travel restrictions to ensure they are abiding by them. We look forward to welcoming visitors once again to Dublin Zoo.’

The full statement issued this afternoon can be found here.