The Victoria Bug Zoo offers an opportunity to view and experience real (live) tropical bugs from around the world.
I have an irrational fear of bugs. There are far too many incidences where I have literally been ‘trapped’ in a room because a large bug or spider was near the exit route. I literally become paralyzed with fear until (A) someone comes and rescues me, or (B) the bug moves out of the way.
So as you can imagine, when my sister-in-law suggested we all go to the Victoria Bug Zoo, I wasn’t too keen on the idea. I hatched up an alternate plan to wander around the beautiful streets of Victoria while the others were subjecting themselves to bug torture.
However, the ‘lovely afternoon’ I had envisioned was dashed as torrential rain pounded the streets. Without an umbrella to keep me dry, I reluctantly joined everyone in viewing mammoth bugs.
Much to my surprise, the experience was rather fun!
What to Expect
There are approximately 50 species, including North America’s largest captive ant colony (and possibly even the world).
Other than during the demonstration times (see below), the bugs are well-contained in glass terrariums. Posted above each enclosure, you will find fascinating facts about the bug inside.
(I must admit…the information I sought was where the bugs originated. I wanted to scratch those locations off my travel wish list).
Throughout the day, staff offer ‘demonstration times’ for a closer look at a particular species. If you’re so inclined, it is during this time that spectators have the opportunity of a safe bug-handling experience (Ummm, no, thank you!).
During our time at the Victoria Bug Zoo, we were able to get up-close-and-personal with Malaysian Jungle Nymphs, Tarantulas, Scorpions, Dead-Leaf Mantis, and Walking Sticks (let’s just say some of us were a little closer than others).
In between occasional involuntary shudders, I found the demonstrations quite interesting. However, I was a bit distracted, for I needed to monitor the bugs that weren’t being shown off closely. You see, no one, other than myself, seemed overly concerned that while the demonstration bug was being passed around, the container where it came from was left wide open…and there were plenty of other bugs just like it. Thankfully they were well-behaved and didn’t try to make any great escape.
Hours of Operation
Current hours of operation (April 2023):
- Monday – Friday 11:00 am – 4:00 pm
- Saturday and Sunday – 10:00 am – 4:00pm
- Children 4 and under – Free
- Children and Youth – ages 5 – 17 – $8.00
- Adults – 18+ – $16.00
- Seniors (65+) and Post Secondary Students (w/ID) – $12.00
(Tax not included. Rates are current as of April 2023. Please check the Victoria Bug Zoo website for up-to-date information)
A mask must be worn by everyone five years old and over while they are in the Zoo.
Location of the Victoria Bug Zoo
The Victoria Bug Zoo is a two-room mini-zoo in downtown Victoria, British Columbia, Canada. It is just one block north of the Fairmont Empress Hotel (which is another must-see).
The official address is:
631 Courtney Street, Victoria.
Most kids love bugs, so it really is a great way for the family to spend a few hours. If you are hesitant, remember….if I can live through it, ANYONE can!
Have you been to the Victoria Bug Zoo? Let me know your thoughts in the comments below.
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