Montecasino Bird Gardens review, Fourways (JHB)

"The parrot with the blue feet"...:)
Traditionally in Johannesburg, if you want to see wildlife, you head off to the JHB Zoo (which is very cool itself).
If you feel like something a little different though, why not pay a visit to the Montecasino Bird Gardens.
While you may not see quite the same variety of animals as you would at the zoo, it is a different kind of experience and well worth it, especially if you have little ones in need of a really cool bird show :)

Date last visited

June 2013

Location and Setting

Montecasino is well known in Johannesburg - it sits on the Cnr of William Nicol Drive and Montecasino Boulevard in Fourways, Johannesburg.
Once you are in Montecasino itself, simply follow the signs to the Bird Gardens.
Once you reach the huge Hyundai helium balloon (which you cannot miss), then you are just about there :)

You can get directions and a map on the Montecasino site here.
You can also find a Google map here.

The cool thing is that the Gautrain Bus network has a drop off point directly in front of the Bird Gardens entrance - super convenient.

For the kids...

The biggest kid attraction here is definitely the animal factor.
The name is deceptive though, as the Bird Gardens are home not only to birds, but to mammals, reptiles, and some other rather unusual species as well.
As you explore the park, you will spot all kinds of creatures - toucans, parrots, flamingos, storks, meerkats, snakes, tortoises, frogs, spiders and many more I'm sure, if you keep your eyes peeled closely enough!

The highlight however, has to be the "Flight of Fantasy" Bird Show.
You can catch the 40 minute show in the Tuscan Amphitheatre - click here for show times.

The show is included in your ticket price and is great fun for young and old, so make sure you catch one while you are there.
We saw the show over 2 months ago, and our 2 year old is still asking about the mascot of the show - a guy dressed up in a giant, colourful toucan outfit, whom she fondly refers to as "the parrot with the blue feet" :).

When the tummies start to rumble and grumble, it's time to make a beeline for Cafe Flamingo.
Here you can sit back and enjoy a meal and a cappuccino or something cold, while the kiddies clamber about on the jungle gym or play in the sandpit and on the swings.
Cafe Flamingo also caters for kiddies birthday parties (max. 30 people) - click here for further info.

For the adults...

Parents will love the wide variety of creatures here, and the Bird Show will definitely put smiles on all faces.
On our last visit, after the show we were allowed to go down and meet some of the bird-stars of the show (including "the parrot with the blue feet" :), and get photos taken with them.

The food at Cafe Flamingo is reasonably priced, and of good quality.
All of the meals we have had there have been great, and their offerings range from breakfasts, to tramezzinis and other coffee shop-type fare.
The place does get busy though, so either get there early for breakfast, or wait until a show is on - this tends to be a quieter period with lots of tables available.

Also try get a table close to the play area so you can keep a close eye on the little ones, while enjoying the sights and sounds of the nearby Flamingo Pond.

Anything else?

When purchasing your tickets, be sure to buy a small container of nectar to feed to the Rainbow Lorikeets - they live in one of the first enclosures as you enter the park, and they will land on your arm or shoulder and literally eat out of your hand. The kids just love it, as do the adults :)

The toilets are clean and well maintained (always a biggie!), and there is a baby-changing fold down table in the ladies toilets.

For current ticket pricing and Bird Park hours, click here.

When you have had your fill of the Bird Gardens, you can always head over to the Hyundai Helium Balloon, which carries 30 people at a time and offers breathtaking views, or why not head into Montecasino, where you get an ice cream and take a stroll over to the Piazza, with its colourful musical fountains which the kids are sure to enjoy.

Final words

The Montecasino Bird Gardens make for a fun and memorable day out, especially as we head into the beautiful summer months up here on the Highveld.
The variety of bird and other species, a wonderful bird show, and the Gautrain Bus convenience factor make it something that you will want to do over and over again.

Getting in touch

Telephone:
(+27) 11 511 1864

Fax: 
(+27) 11 511 0477 

Email: 

Website:

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Plebs with Kids visits mainly JHB-based venues, coffee shops, restaurants, play areas and other such establishments.

We rate their kid-friendliness (among other things :) for your convenience, and for the next time you need a place to go, while knowing that your little ones are well catered for.

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