‘You’re a wizard Scott.’ I told my three year old son who was fascinated by a snake that was following his every move around its glass cage. At one point, they even stared into each other’s eyes as if they were hypnotized by one another.
‘What?’ He responded while looking up at me, confused by what I just said.
‘Ah you’re too young to understand my Harry Potter reference.’ I replied, getting a few giggles from those who were around me that heard and understood my little joke.
‘Huh?’ Scott questioned even more baffled.
‘Don’t worry, look it’s an albino cobra! I think it likes you.’ I said pointing at it.
‘Yeah, he has red eyes. Wow!’ He exclaimed excitedly. It was a rare and gorgeous creature with white scale skin, making me feel privileged that we could see it from such a close proximity.
‘He’s trying to figure out if you are a threat or food. It’s his feeding time!’ Announced the keeper of the Vivarium animals. Placing a frozen dead rat in its cage, the snake was quick to bite and tangle its body around it. Injecting its venom that can kill a human within 30 minutes, the cobra proceeded to swallow the rat’s entire corpse. This feeding show was quite a compelling spectacle to watch, leaving myself and my kids gasping with our jaws dropped.
We even got to caress a boa constrictor snake! Although I was a bit shaky, as I’m still fearful of them, Scarlett wanted to hug it and Scott happily petted it.
As we walked past another glass cage, an iguana took an interest in Scarlett (my one year old daughter). Advancing towards her it jumped onto the glass, screeching it with its claws. Without a tinge of fear, she was oohing and aahing in delight at its actions.
From the Bitis gabonica rhinoceros viper to Veiled chameleons and Marañón poison frog, the Vivarium de Meyrin in Geneva hosts around 200 captivating reptiles and about 50 species of them. The landscaped terrariums are planted and decorated to reproduce, as closely as they can, the natural habitat of each animal.
Overall, we found it a fantastic place to spend an afternoon at. It has no access for baby buggies but it is safe to leave it in its reception area while you tour the Vivarium. Food and drinks are not available in the vivarium so be prepared for that.
It’s also great that it’s open everyday!
Opening hours: Monday to Friday from 2pm - 5pm Saturday and Sunday from 10am - 5pm
Entry prices: Adults = 10 CHF
Students, AVS / AI = 8 CHF Children (6-16) = 6 CHF Children (0-5) = Free
Rue Cardinal-Journet 32A