Tiergarten Schönbrunn, Vienna, Austria | Interrail

We went to Vienna for one reason and one reason only. The zoo. 
As two zoology students travelling, would you expect any less?

Vienna Zoo is the oldest in the world - and that time has made it the best zoo that I have ever visited. It helps that it is based in Schonbrunn Palace grounds, which are absolutely beautiful and live up to the expectations that you imagine when the word 'palace' crops up.

The Zoo itself was a dreamland. The enclosures were huge and enriched to a high standard, and all of the animals looked so happy and healthy.

As soon as you walked in, you encountered giant pandas and hippos. I'd only seen pandas once before at Edinburgh zoo, so to see them again up close and being mischievous whilst the keepers were trying to clean was amazing. And as for hippos, I love hippos - their wiggly ears are just too cute.

I have so many memories from this day, but my absolute favourite memory was the polar bears.

I had never seen polar bears in the flesh before, and so I was stood watching them in awe at their huge paws and strong bodies. Within minutes of standing by and watching them, the heavens opened and the rain was falling hard. We quickly dashed back inside into the information area (which was useless for us overall as we couldn't read any of the information it held), and I stood by a huge water tank, which was all it was to my knowledge- a huge empty tank.

I noticed fish dropping into the tank, confused as ever, I called A over and said 'why are there dead fish floating around in this tank?!' (worst aquarium ever, am I right?!). When, suddenly, right in front of my face, this happened:

I'm not going to lie, I shit myself. Just imagine staring intensely into a tank full of water at dead fish and all of a sudden this HUGE BEAR appears right in front of your face. I thought I was in Jurassic Park for a second, no word of a lie. AND THEN IT HAPPENED AGAIN.

After composing myself and recovering from the double-time shock, I stood and watched the playful bears in the water. I'd never seen something so beautiful, it's something that I'll never forget.

Another favourite memory was when I decided to whip out some food due to becoming a little peckish, right by the otters; and this little guy thought that he could swap a pebble for some of my food.

*cue internal squealing* I know. I know. Too cute.

I took so many photos of this day, it was super hard to narrow them down to a select few (lol, select few, I'm still bombarding you.) From bees making honey, bunnies chewing branches, to cheetahs up close, I was snap happy. So, here's a little photo diary of some of my favourite images:

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