The RMCO came into effect on June 10, 2020, and will run until August 31, 2020. If things maintain and improve (read manageable Covid-19 infections), things will, slowly but surely go back to normal. Or a new normal, if you like. Relief is palpable all around, although care must be taken to ensure the SOPs are adhered to, all the time. For now, give yourself a pat on the back for a job well done! A big shoutout goes to all the essential workers who worked tirelessly these past months. Whether it was to keep food shelves stocked, or bring us door to door deliveries, the healthcare personnel, and the law enforcement officers, you have our grateful thanks. Relaxations Under RMCO Under the RMCO, we can patronise places, previously shut. Some places on this list include museums, hair salons, wet markets, night markets, and food courts. Additionally, our very own Zoo Negara has also opened its doors to welcome back visitors. If you are looking for something a little different for a breather, how about paying Zoo Negara a visit? Bring your family and friends. The more, the merrier, I say! C'mon Over, We Are Open! Zoo Negara presents an excursion both fun and educational, regardless of age. Whether you go alone, as a couple, a family or a school group, there is so much to see and enjoy, even when adhering to SOPs. Plus, it is a great way to catch up with family and friends after such a long hiatus away. Let's Go To The Zoo If a visit to Zoo Negara is in the offing, these considerations might prove helpful: Cheaper By The Dozen To get the best bang for your buck, consider visiting Zoo Negara as a group. Alternatively, planning a school group visit is another cost-effective way to visit the zoo. For those going individually, ticket prices are based on an ascending scale, with Malaysians benefitting from cheaper admission tickets, compared to foreigners. The same applies for children from 3 - 12 years of age. Children under 3 enter for free! Zoo Negara Ticket Price Golden Seniors are also in for a treat with cheaper admission tickets. Again, these prices are on the same ascending scale, with Malaysians benefitting with discounted fares. Those possessing OKU cards are also granted free admission. To ensure you are able to benefit from the discounts, remember to bring along your MyKad, MyKid or Passport as Zoo Negara may require proof of citizenship prior to issuing admission tickets. And this just in; our frontliners in the battle against Covid-19, get to go in for free. Also, those who make a trip to Zoo Negara within 30 days of their birthday, get to go in for free too. How good is that! Hot Wheels Anyone? Zoo Negara has acquired spiffy wheels for those who might like to jet about, rather than walk the zoo grounds, especially if your visit happens on a particularly hot and muggy day. Tram ride tickets are sold separately from admission tickets. Trams run on two routes.\u00a0 Malaysians have the added advantage of purchasing tickets at a discount upon presentation of your MyKad. The same applies for children. Zoo Negara reserves the right to ask for your MyKad and MyKid at the point of purchase. Kids under two ride for free! Additionally, wheelchairs, strollers and lockers are available for rent, although all rentals are on a first-come, first-served basis. For any rentals, a refundable deposit is required, in addition to your rental payment. If you want to make a quick trip around Zoo Negara, the shortest way would be onboard the trams. However,\u00a0 zoos are always better experienced on foot, since in slowing things down, we get to relish views, close up.\u00a0 Sights and Sounds Mums, take note that the multi animal shows, which feature Cape fur seals and macaws, have changed in light of the RMCO.\u00a0 Be mindful that Zoo Negara reserves the right to cancel showtimes at any moment, and without any reason. With that in mind, it is always advisable to catch the earlier shows, rather than the later ones, so as to avoid disappointment. Having said that, Zoo Negara is best visited during weekdays, since there would be fewer visitors about. While there is only one animal showtime, you can get a head start by hitting the tracks bright and early, when Zoo Negara opens its doors, at 9am. Not only will you make it for the show, but you would also be able to visit more exhibits before the sun reaches its zenith, and things heat up. Walking in the torrid heat can sap your energy, and that of your kids very quickly, making the trip hard going. Plus, when it gets hot, animals tend to seek cover from the heat, making them hard to spot.\u00a0 Feeding Time Zoo Negara offers animal feeding to those keen to do so. Animal feeding is a wonderful opportunity for visitors to get up close and personal to the residents of the zoo. All are welcome, although if the little ones are frightened, it would be advisable to either go slow with them or ditch the activity altogether. The chance of feeding animals should be a joyful and memorable time. Frightened or crying children may startle or agitate animals, which would be, at best, inadvisable. Those keen on animal feeding can head to the Children's World, where animal feeding is available on weekends and Public Holidays from 12 - 1pm. Javan deer feeding is also available during weekends and Public Holidays from 2 - 3pm. Like the animal shows, animal feeding can be cancelled without prior notice or reason. Birthdays & Special Days Zoo Negara has facilities for children's birthday parties, family gatherings, and even weddings for those who might prefer an exotic themed celebration of their special day. Corporate functions are just as welcome, for those keen. Be prepared for surprises when orangutans, pythons and birds make their appearance at your special do, to mix and mingle with the guests. With huge grounds, Zoo Negara can accommodate parties of up to 3000 guests. Plus, staff are also on hand to help plan an exciting Zoo Hunt or a "Do You Dare Challenge" which are not for the faint of heart. The little ones are not left out either as children have their own activities, which are fun and educational. Adopt Me! - Zoo Negara Adoption Package To help defray the cost of the upkeep of the animals and the maintenance of the grounds, Zoo Negara has always relied heavily on donations. When Covid-19 swept its devastating blow across the world, zoos globally felt the pinch. With plummeting ticket sales and no visitors, zoos found it hard going to keep afloat. Sadly, our very own Zoo Negara was no exception. Adopt An Animal Programme has been Zoo Negara's effective way to solicit donations from the rakyat for its upkeep. While this programme is not new, it is in times like these, that all of us can, and should step up, where possible, to help out. In partnership with Ticket2u, prospective adopters can make an investment for as little as RM25 per time. Those participating in this programme will be awarded an adoption certificate, a 1 free child entry when accompanied by a paying adult promotion, plus free admission vouchers, cool premium items, and even an acknowledgement at Zoo Negara's website, depending on the amount invested. Up Your Game! Mums out there with children 16 years old right through to university, will be happy to know that Zoo Negara welcomes volunteers to assist keepers, and other staff at the zoo, under their KeeperKu programme. If you are keen, get in touch with them for assistance. While volunteers may not always get paired up with tasks they might prefer, their time here would be invaluable as part of their experiential learning.\u00a0 Those under 18 years old need parental permission before they can be accepted into the KeeperKu programme. The signed forms need to be brought with them when they turn up for work. The Zoo Fauna Zoo Negara has many resident attractions to offer visitors. Take your pick of gentle Asiatic elephants, the majestic Malayan tigers, or mischievous primates to view and photograph. Wander into the Giant Panda Conservation Centre and feast your eyes on those gentle, lovable black and white bears. Additionally, at the Bear Complex, visitors will get to see the Malayan Sun Bear (see image above), the Asiatic Black Bear, and the Brown Bear. Wander into Africa and view resplendent ostriches, striking zebra, magnificent lions, tall giraffes, and the swift cheetahs.\u00a0 Take some time to step into the Bee Muzeum or the Butterfly Garden to view insects, and butterflies in their natural setting. Learn how necessary these little critters are for the environment. Those who suffer from Entomophobia, or the fear of insects, may find this is a good place to start in overcoming that fear. Insects seen their natural setting, and up close, are not as frightening. If you are a birdwatching enthusiast, you will be happy to know that Zoo Negara has a whole aviary of them. It has, in fact, the biggest collection of birds in the country, some of which are listed on the endangered species list. Flora To mimic animal habitats as close to nature as possible,\u00a0 Zoo Negara has worked hard to ensure greenery and vegetation all around are lush, verdant, and abundant. If you are tired from your exertions, feel free to take a well-deserved breather at their many well placed rest stops, and enjoy the views all around. Keep a weather eye out, surprises may be discovered at every turn. Let's Go To The Zoo Zoo Negara awaits you with its doors wide open. However, before you traipse to the Zoo, check out their website for good deals, which keep popping up as we speak. What You Should Bring Along? Gear up with face masks and shields, for good measure. Remember to bring along sufficient wet wipes, and hand sanitisers too. Food is plentiful at Zoo Negara, but if you would like to bring your own, feel free to pack a picnic basket with sufficient snacks for everyone. Don't forget to bring lots of water. Battling heat and humidity is thirsty work indeed! Then, let's go and have some fun in the sun!