Kolmården Wildlife Park
|Location||Bråviken bay, Norrköping, Sweden|
|Land area||1.5 km2 (370 acres)|
|No. of species||85|
|Annual visitors||720,000 (2015)|
|Owner||Parks & Resorts Scandinavia|
Kolmården Wildlife Park (Swedish: Kolmårdens djurpark) is a zoo that opened in 1965 overlooking Bråviken bay in Sweden. It is the largest zoo in Scandinavia, includes the first dolphinarium in Scandinavia, which opened in 1969 and has daily shows, and the worlds first cable car safari. The wildlife park also has a birds of prey display and a seal show. In the Marine World area is a roller coaster called "The Dolphin Express".
The zoo was conceived in 1962 by Ulf Svensson as a means of reviving the Kolmården Municipality, and was opened in 1965 with 210 animals in residence.
The polar bear facility opened in 1968 with 6 polar bears—one of the largest polar facilities in the world. The dolphinarium opened in 1969, and in 1972 the zoo became home to brown bears. 1972 also saw the opening of the drive-through safari park, as well as the Tropicarium, which exhibited snakes and crocodiles, Located outside the entry of the zoo.
In 1993, the zoo opened Dolphin Lagoon. In 1997, the zoo was turned over from municipal ownership to private ownership. Bamses värld, devoted to the cartoon character Bamse, was opened in the following year.
Parks and Resorts Scandinavia took over operation of the zoo in 2001 and has since been making many changes. Tiger World, where visitors can get "scary close" to tigers, was completed in 2007, and in 2008, the dolphinarium was extended into a new Marine World. In 2009, a family friendly roller-coaster called "The dolphin express" (Delfinexpressen) opened in Marine World.
In 2006, a baby gorilla was born at Kolmården for the first time in history, making its birth the first of its kind in Sweden. The gorilla, called Enzo, was not accepted by his mother during the first period of his life and the zookeepers had to nurse him. Enzo was later reintroduced to his family, and in 2009, Enzo got a brother, called Echo.
The safari park that originally opened in 1972 was closed to drive-through visitors in 2010, but was replaced by a low-going cableway in 2011, called "Safari". The attraction consists of five areas with different themes and animals:
- The highland: llamas and ibex
- Forest of the bears: Eurasian brown bears
- The Savannah: blackbuck, giraffes, common eland, gemsbok, wildebeest, ostriches, Ankole-Watusi, Grévy's zebras, lechwe, chital
- The Scandinavian forest: red deer, moose, fallow deer, European bison
- The Valley of Lions: African lions
In March 2014, Kolmården announced a new theme park area for younger children, the popular cartoon figure BAMSE would get a whole new themed area with several attractions, including a smaller roller coaster due to open in 2015.
The zoo houses two elephants given to the king of Sweden by Thailand. Kolmården Wildlife Park has the only gorillas, bottle-nosed dolphins, bush dogs, addax antelopes, oryx antelopes, Asian elephants, takin, Grévy's zebras, dholes, and ibex in Sweden.
- Kolmården Tropicarium, a aquarium and terrarium adjacent to the park
- Kolmården: Let the adventure begin. Retrieved 10 April 2015.
- "Kolmårdens djurpark". Nationalencyklopedin (in Swedish). Retrieved 30 April 2011. (subscription required)
- "Kolmården Zoo". parks-resorts.com. Parks and Resorts Scandinavia. Retrieved 24 April 2011.
- "EAZA Member Zoos & Aquariums". eaza.net. EAZA. Retrieved 24 April 2011.
- "Zoos and Aquariums of the World". waza.org. WAZA. Retrieved 24 April 2011.
- "History". kolmarden.com. Kolmården Zoo. Retrieved 24 April 2011.
- "Zookeeper killed by wolves in Sweden". CNN. Retrieved 15 February 2014.
- "Kolmarden Zoo (Kolmardens djurpark) in Sweden". elephant.se. The Elephant Encyclopedia. Retrieved 24 April 2011.