All experiences are currently on hold until further notice and no bookings are currently being taken.

Introducing our most immersive behind-the-scenes experience to date! You'll spend the day with our zookeepers caring for our carnivores; big cats, red pandas, meerkats, otters and more.

Cleaning, maintenance, feeding, health-checks, training, and enrichment are just some of the hands-on activities you'll be participating in. A truly once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to experience what it's like to be a zookeeper and learn how a modern zoo cares for its precious animals.

Your guide will tailor the experience based on any particular areas of interest or objectives you might have.

Experience Features:

  • A pre-tour phone-call to answer questions and discuss any interests or objectives.
  • An exclusive, varied and in-depth experience – you'll have the opportunity to work alongside several experienced zookeepers.
  • Venture behind-the-scenes and learn first-hand how we care for our animals at Auckland Zoo.
  • Clean, feed, train, health-check and enrich a variety of animals on the Carnivore section of Auckland Zoo.
  • Your guide will provide photos of you immersed in your experience to take home on USB. Personal devices are not permitted to be used in behind-the-scenes areas.
  • Experience includes all-day Zoo access – so you are free to explore the rest of the Zoo at your leisure.

You Will Need:

  • Covered work boots, ideally steel-capped.
  • Neutral coloured work clothes that you don’t mind getting dirty, shorts permitted. Wet weather gear will be provided if necessary.
  • Water bottle and packed lunch (cafe food also available onsite).
  • A good level of fitness and stability on uneven ground.
  • A sense of adventure and an even bigger sense of humour.

All Behind-The-Scenes participants are expected to comply with these terms and conditions, and health and safety procedures . If you are booking on behalf of an organization or group of people, please ensure that everyone participating in the Experience is aware of this information. Those not complying with the guidelines, or presenting a risk to themselves, animals or others, may be asked to leave the Zoo. No refund will be issued under these circumstances.

Age Restrictions

  • All participants must be at least 18 years old.


  • Participants may be asked to cease the encounter at any time for reasons relating to animal welfare or visitor misconduct, at the keepers or guides discretion.
  • All Behind-The-Scenes Experience times and experiences are approximate and are subject to change at any time, at the discretion of Auckland Zoo.
  • The price of your Behind-The-Scenes Experience covers your entry into the Zoo on the day of your experience. Any other guests accompanying you to the Zoo must purchase tickets before entering.
  • Auckland Zoo will not be liable for any personal injury or for any lost or damaged equipment.
  • Taking photographs or video in the Zoo for personal use is permitted. Photographs and video taken may not be taken in any Behind-The-Scenes areas or used for commercial or promotional purposes without express permission from Auckland Zoo. For further information please contact the Zoo's Media and Communications Coordinator on (09) 360 3804.

Responsibilities of the Customer

  • All participants must follow the instructions given by their Experience Guide or any other Zoo staff member at all times.
  • All participants must wear appropriate clothing and footwear. This includes flat, enclosed footwear, and clothing appropriate to the weather conditions.
  • All participants on this experience must be able to walk well on uneven terrain.
  • Auckland Zoo must be advised prior to the experience date of any medical conditions or disabilities that may impact on a participant’s participation.
  • Strictly no whistles, balls, balloons, frisbees, bikes, skateboards or rollerskates/blades or similar are allowed into the Zoo.

Animal Welfare

  • Due to the possibility of unforeseeable animal or other welfare issues, Auckland Zoo cannot guarantee that all animals and exhibits specified will be available. 
  • Auckland Zoo has a hands-off policy with many of the species it keeps, therefore physical contact with the animals is not guaranteed on every experience.
  • Please do not feed any of the animals. If feeding is allowed as part of your Experience, the guide will provide you with the appropriate food and instructions.
  • Under no circumstances should you attempt to have contact with an animal unless under instruction by a Zoo staff member.

Payments and Confirmation

  • All Behind-The-Scenes Experience bookings must be paid in advance.
  • Behind-The-Scenes Experience bookings will only be confirmed upon receipt of payment.
  • All experience date changes, postponements and cancellations must be negotiated directly with the Experience Products team and are at the discretion of Auckland Zoo.
  • Experience date changes/postponements by the participant must be advised at least five working days prior to the booked experience date. If received after this time, a $25 administration fee (per person) will be charged.
  • No refund will be given for participant cancellation five working days or less of the booked experience date.
  • No refunds will be given if you arrive for your experience and do not meet the criteria for participation. It is your responsibility to read the conditions for participation prior to arriving.
  • Where Auckland Zoo has to cancel or postpone an experience, participants are entitled to rebook the experience or obtain a full refund. Auckland Zoo will not reimburse any travelling or other incidental expenses incurred.

We don’t offer gift vouchers, but you can still book the experience as a gift (see below). Need something to add to a gift card? You could print out the booking confirmation email or even your favourite animal picture!

Sure! Just put your details under ‘Contact Details’ and their contact information under ‘Participant’. Please forward on your booking confirmation emails to the lucky recipient as they contain important health and safety information for the experience.

It is best to contact our team at to discuss any disabilities so we can assess them on a case-by-case basis. All participants on this experience must have a good level of fitness and stability on uneven ground. Unfortunately, we are not able to accommodate wheelchairs or motorized walkers on this Experience.

This experience is only suitable for adults aged 18+.

No, this experience is for one person only per day. 

Your guide will take photos during your experience so you can fully live in the moment. You will receive these on a USB - all included in your experience! Unfortunately, use of personal devices are prohibited in our behind-the-scenes areas. Any personal belongings and devices will be secured during your Experience in storage lockers free of charge.

The price includes your zoo entry fee so feel free to stay at the Zoo after your behind-the-scenes experience.

Please wear covered work boots (ideally steel-capped) and neutral coloured work clothes that you don’t mind getting dirty, shorts permitted (ideal colours are khaki, brown and beige). Wet weather gear will be provided if necessary.

The weather will not normally affect this experience, but feel free to phone us on the morning of your experience to check on the status.  Occasionally, we may need to cancel or postpone your behind-the-scenes experience due to stormy weather. Any experiences postponed by Auckland Zoo will be rescheduled to another date. 

We have a hands-off policy with most of our animals and there is no direct physical contact with any animals on this experience.

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