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Unique Cage Tour at China Zoo: Animals Walk Freely, People Don’t

By Orgesta Tolaj


20 October 2023

© CEN / Youtube

We all have a bit of an idea of how zoos work. There is a limited array of space available, where you can walk around, and see animals in cages. While some may not agree with zoos and their etiquette, the reality is that they do in fact exist, whether people like them or not. However, this one zoo has decided to switch things up a little bit. Instead of caging animals, this unique cage tour at China Zoo, allows animals to roam freely, while people are put inside cages.

What Is the Zoo Behind the Unique Tour?

Lehe Ledu Wildlife Zoo, located in Chongqing, China, is a distinctive and somewhat controversial animal park that offers a novel approach to zoo visits. The most notable feature of Lehe Ledu Wildlife Zoo is its reversed concept of zoo-keeping. Instead of having animals in cages and visitors walking freely, the roles are reversed. Visitors pay to be enclosed in specially designed cages, which are then driven through the park’s animal enclosures. The attraction was introduced around 2015.

Unique Cage Tour at China Zoo:

Unique Cage Tour at China Zoo

The visitor cages are constructed with strong materials to ensure the safety of the guests. These cages often have large windows or openings, allowing visitors to have unobstructed views of the animals. They are also equipped with feeding trays so that guests can offer food to the animals.

Unique Cage Tour at China Zoo
© Wonderbot Animals / Youtube

The zoo’s main attraction is the opportunity to get up close to some of the world’s most formidable predators. This includes tigers, lions, bears, and other large carnivores. Visitors are driven through these predator habitats. The moving vehicle they are in has chunks of fresh meat attached to it, which attracts the animals. A zoo official told OddityCentral: “We wanted to give our visitors the thrill of being stalked and attacked by the big cats but with, of course, none of the risks. The guests are warned to keep their fingers and hands inside the cage at all times because a hungry tiger wouldn’t know the difference between them and breakfast.”

Animal Welfare Concerns

Lehe Ledu Wildlife Zoo has faced criticism from animal welfare advocates and animal rights organizations. The practice of luring predators towards the cages with food can be seen as stressful for the animals and raises ethical concerns about their well-being. However, the zoo takes strict safety precautions to ensure that visitors are not in any immediate danger. The cages are designed to be secure, and park staff are trained to operate the vehicles and manage any potential risks.

Unique Cage Tour at China Zoo

Additionally, to ensure the well-being of the animals, the zoo employs a range of enrichment activities and practices. This includes mental stimulation, toys, and other forms of entertainment to keep the animals engaged and prevent boredom. Moreover, the zoo is located within a natural environment, which is meant to mimic the animals’ natural habitats as closely as possible. This design is intended to create a more immersive and educational experience for visitors.

Would you dare to enter the lion’s den face-front like this? Or would you rather stay in the comfort of your own home?

You might also want to read: Rare Brown Spotless Giraffe Spotted in a Tennessee Zoo

Orgesta Tolaj

Your favorite introvert who is buzzing around the Hive like a busy bee!