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A Visitor's Guide to the Shanghai Natural Wild Insect Kingdom

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A Visitor's Guide to the Shanghai Natural Wild Insect Kingdom

Feeding fish at the Wild Insect Museum

© 2010 Sara Naumann, licensed to About.com.

Introduction:

Here's a brief visitor's guide to the Shanghai Natural Wild Insect Kingdom or what we like to call the "bug museum". There's a lot more to it than bugs. In fact, reptiles are equally showcased at the Kingdom. In any regard, it's a great little activity for little ones while you spend some time in Shanghai.

Visitor Information:

Name in Chinese: 大自然野生昆虫馆
Entry Fee:
40rmb - adults / 30rmb - children (babies free)
Hours of Operation:
Daily 9am-5pm (last ticket sold at 4:30)
Address:
1 Fenghe Lu, near the Pearl Tower (Pudong) | 浦东新区丰和路1号近东方明珠

Facilities:

  • Toilets on the basement level
  • Sitting area for resting, having a snack (basement level)
  • Toy shop on basement level
  • DIY fishing for goldfish (rent a bucket and net from toy shop)

Kid / Stroller Friendly?:

While the Insect Kingdom is very kid friendly (it's made for them), it is not terribly stroller-friendly. There are no elevators and most of the exhibits are on the basement level so you'll have to carry the stroller downstairs. If your kid is mobile, park your stroller at the inside gate and leave it there till you leave. If you've got an infant, be prepared to bump the stroller around quite a bit.

Features:

Parents should note that while the name is all about bugs, there's a lot more to the Wild Insect Kingdom than bugs alone. In fact, bugs make up only a small section of this unique menagerie of creatures. Kids will have fun. You'll find it bizarre.

Outside is a small garden with a gazebo and large fiberglass Looney Toons characters (unexplained).
First floor entry: As you enter, there's a large tank. This has been full of enormous goldfish until recently a seal was installed. I'm not sure if the seal is permanent - the tank is rather small for this busy creature. Next you enter a faux rain forest where alligators and chameleons are stationed (in glass) along a water feature full of fish. Use a few 1 rmb coins from the machines to enjoy feeding the ravenous (yet enormous) koi who follow you as you walk waiting for a hand-out.

After the "forest" there is a small section of enclosures for pygmy marmosets (of course) who seem very busy. If you stand near the glass, they'll come check you out. Across from the marmosets are snakes of all shapes and sizes. Next on the first level, you'll enter the world of bugs. From singing crickets to hatching butterflies to cockroaches the size of small children, here's where the "Wild Insect" big comes in.

Now head downstairs to the basement level where you'll find the petting zoo area (feed the goats for 2rmb), the frog area, the lizard tunnel and the extensive turtle area. Beyond all these live creatures is a room for preserved insects where you should definitely have a wander. There are some amazing butterflies, beetles and insects in here. You'll also find a large shallow pool for DIY fishing (rent a bucket and net from the ladies in the toy shop to let your kids have a go. While we've never been successful (or patient enough?) to catch any fish, the local kids seem to head home with hundreds.

There's also a large sitting area next to the toy shop where tired parents can rest while the kids check out the fake Legos and Transformers in the shop.

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