Where to eat
Where: Opposite the Plaza Kiosk, overlooking the Japanese garden and lake.
The Lakeside Bistro offers sustainable, seasonal dining at its best.
Its delicious meals are freshly made, using local produce whenever possible – including breads and pastries from the Zoo’s in-house bakery and herbs picked from our own garden.
The family friendly menu includes no-fuss sourdough sandwiches, soups served with Zoo bakery rolls, and gourmet salads.
For something more substantial, you might choose from a handmade burger, an aromatic curry or pasta. There are also a number of vegetarian and gluten-free options.
The Lakeside Bistro is also a popular spot for morning and afternoon tea, with a selection of Zoo-baked pastries, cakes, scones and cookies.
If you’re after something to drink, we have fair trade coffee, organic hot chocolate, a range of carefully picked wines and beers, and more.
Our kids’ menu has universal favourites such as fish and chips and burgers, as well as tasty toasties, fried rice and a choice of desserts designed for small stomachs.
Our food philosophy
Low food miles, sustainable product and when we can, we make it on-site.
Always aiming to reduce our carbon footprint, our menus are created seasonally to make the most of fresh local produce when it is at its best. We use Victorian hormone-free grass-fed beef, free-range antibiotic-free chicken and free-range eggs.
Where: Opposite the Plaza Kiosk.
Melbourne is known and loved as a foodie mecca – so maybe it’s not surprising that we host one of the world’s first on-site Zoo bakeries.
You can watch the bakers at work through the window and take in the wonderful smell of freshly baked bread. We have an irresistible range of baked goods on offer to satisfy your appetite.
The bakery makes gourmet pies, sausage rolls, pasties, pizzas, sandwiches and baguettes, all perfect lunch options.
If you’ve got a sweet tooth, there are muffins, fairy cakes, cookies and other treats to take away (or even take home).
And what better souvenir of your visit than a freshly baked loaf of bread? We make a range of loaves and rolls, from pumpkin bread and spiced fruit loaf to casalinga and organic wholemeal.
We also make kids’ lunch packs that combine healthy food with a sweet treat: there’s a sandwich, a piece of fruit, a Pop-Top juice and a Zoo-baked elephant gingerbread.
Where: Off the Main Drive, past the Wild Sea exhibit.
If you want to grab a quick, on-budget bite and set off to explore the Zoo, the Plaza Kiosk is perfect.
The meals and snacks here are ready-to-go, and have all been freshly made on-site.
There’s a range of pies, pastries and sausage rolls from the Zoo bakery, as well as wraps and sandwiches, sushi, salad and gourmet burgers. Or if a hot meal is your preferred fuel, there’s a pasta and curry of the day – and in winter, a daily soup.
You can select a table outside the Plaza, or find a spot on the lawns and enjoy the natural surrounds of the Zoo.
Where: Main entrance, Elliott Avenue.
Meerkat Manor Cafe stands just inside the Zoo entrance, overlooking the playful meerkats.
It’s a great spot to start your visit, whether you’re enjoying your first coffee of the day (ours are free trade), or recharging your batteries over lunch.
There’s a range of pies and pastries from the Zoo bakery, as well as salads, sandwiches and sweet treats.
You can also pick up hot and cold drinks, ice-creams, chocolates, crisps and snacks.
Where: Next to the Elephant Barn (in the Trail of the Elephants).
Wander along the twisting trail of the elephants through bamboo forests and Asian village scenes to arrive at the Village Kiosk.
The menu takes its inspiration from its surrounds, serving up the authentic tastes of South East Asia.
From stir-fries and curries to Asian snack foods, the food is freshly cooked and packed with flavor. Choose from barbecued pork buns, spring rolls, curry, fried rice and daily specials.
There’s also an assortment of snacks, salads, ice-creams and hot and cold drinks.
The Mek Kapah Terrace provides plenty of outdoor seating – and an ideal setting to enjoy a meal or drink before (or after) viewing the nearby elephants.
The Village Kiosk is a licensed venue; a range of alcoholic beverages are available.
During school holidays and other peak periods, a variety of extra food options are available. They are located at various spots around the Zoo.
A sausage sizzle is set up near the giraffe enclosure during peak periods. You can buy hot chips, snacks and ice-creams, plus hot and cold drinks.