Entering Gondwanaland will appeal to all of your senses as you come into close contact with the tropical rainforest of Africa, Asia and South America. Under a covered area (larger than two football pitches) there are 100 exotic animal species and approx. 500 different plant and animal species. Follow our jungle paths or treetop trail and drift along in a boat on the jungle river Gamanile.
Your journey back in time starts in the volcano tunnel. This is home to living fossils such as the Australian lungfish or horseshoe crabs that have hardly changed in appearance over millions of years. Nocturnal animals also live in the dark volcano tunnel including the Eastern quoll or the pygmy slow loris.
Gondwanaland is diverse and by that we do not only mean the biodiversity itself found here but also the diverse means that are available to you to discover its plants and animals. On jungle paths you can peer through ferns and palms to see the animals. On the suspension bridges from the treetops path you can enjoy a panoramic view of the lush green canopy. By boat on the river Gamanile you can go on an exciting journey back in time through the Earth’s history and through the rainforest. The Asian village Mubaan is the starting point and destination of your expedition.
In the South American rainforest there is something going off at all levels. Squirrel monkeys climb and jump around on an accessible island, while nearby iguanas bask in the sun on their favourite branch. In the treetops sloths lazily hang upside down. Ozelots prowl through the middle of this lush green foliage and at the creek visitors can watch Giant otters swimming.
From small shrubs to towering trees: In Gondwanaland a real rainforest is growing right in the middle of Leipzig. Over 24,000 plants started their journey in nursery gardens in Thailand, Malaysia and Florida – to create a tropical environment at every level from the jungle floor to the canopy. In the garden of tropical crops 60 exotic fruits and spices are grown. Here for example you can touch and smell pineapples, yams, guavas, pepper or cocoa.
Here, animals can be found living together as if they were in their natural habitat. Close to the waterfall pygmy hippopotamus and guenons share an enclosure. A related species – the owl-faced monkey shares the same habitat with dik-diks (the smallest antelopes of Africa).
In the Asian jungle the humidity of the Tropics reaches its peak, which is just how our Komodo dragon likes it. This is the only Komodo dragon so far inGermany. It is the largest living species of lizard in the world and can grow up to three meters long. Also rare and equally worth seeing are the Malayan tapirs that tramp slowly around their enclosure. In the middle of this lush green, visitors can also watch the critically endangered False ghavial either swimming or basking in the sun. Right next to them there is a lot going on as you can see the Asian small-clawed otters cavorting.
Architecture and HVAC technology go hand in hand in Gondwanaland. When you look up, you can see that Gondwanaland is covered by a cantilever steel-girder construction into which 407 foil cushions are embedded. The vertex of the roof reaches a height of 34 meters, allowing sufficient growth for towering tropical vegetation. Concealed behind this construction there is an ingeniously designed heating and irrigation system. The transparent foil cushions do not only enable a 100 percent radiation of UV rays that are so important for the plants and animals living here but also allow thermal energy generated from waste air to be stored in a 100,000 litre energy accumulator, which can then be used at night for heating.