Monster World in Pattaya Thailand
Monster World Pattaya is located on a complex at Chang Siam. This is a 200 Baht Motorcycle Taxi ride from central Pattaya. It is easy enough to find being located only a short distance outside of Pattaya, Chonburi, Thailand on the Pattaya to Rayong road.
The Chang Siam (which means Elephant 'Thailand') complex has a number of independently priced activities. These include Snake Show, Monkey Show, Elephant Trekking, Crocodile Feeding, Shark Hunting, Fish Spa and more.
I had visited 'Monster World' once before about two years ago. At that time it was located on Sukhumvit Highway and an easy walk from Central Pattaya. It then disappeared off the scene. This visit showed that the whole set up had been more or less picked up and plonked down in this new location.
Entrance to Monster World
So is there anything 'Monster' about Monster World? I suppose it really depends on how you look at it. There are hairless dogs, cats, rats and guinea pigs and naked neck chickens too. There are albino (though some are just white) crocodiles, frogs, turtles, crows, pythons, cobras, rhea, peafowl, cats and more. Or perhaps the monster is the two headed, four legged single bodied Trionyx turtle.
Monster is really just a name, a theme and probably in Thai it probably means something like 'freak'. Such terminology is not that unusual and I recollect Associated Pleasure Park's 'Devil Zoo' in Hastings or some such place back in the early 70's. Thinking about it theming around other white things like White Tigers or White Lions is not so very different and they call themselves breeding centres or conservation centres. At the end of the day it is just a name and if there are wild animals in captivity then it is a zoo! I would be willing to put money on it that if some unfortunate tigress were to give birth to a bald cub that some half wit would make supreme efforts to rear and breed from it.
Inside Monster World
Monster World is not cheap. It costs 300 Thai Baht for an adult.
The visitor enters a maze of tanked corridors. There are 98 tanks in all of various sizes. About 20 of these have labels. Quite informative labels in English Thai and Chinese. They include that all important scientific name. They are sadly mis-spelt and incorrect in parts. About eight tanks were empty...well I could not see anything and that leaves 60 tanks with no signs at all. So education value? One!
The tanks themselves were clean and had water. Decoration was at a minimum with a few plastic plants, a twig or two and sand or gravel. That said this was better than many places I have visited. Enrichment? they have obviously never heard of it.
Moving out from the corridors one enters a yard area where there are big turtles and tortoises, a potbelly big, the Rhea, Dog and Cats and more.
At least the birds had somewhere to perch. It is surprising how often this basic necessity is missed out. As an environment for birds though I thought it was pretty horrible.
The fish were not much better off as their tanks were just that...a glass box full of water. A simply boring existence.
It was here in the Monster that I saw my first Skinny Pig some two years ago. It is still here if it is the same animal. I feel sure the white crow was the same so who knows. The 'Monster' two headed turtle was different though. This was a different species. Personally I would have euthanased the unfortunate creature (s). I would question the reasons for any zoo keeping such things. How does it contribute? Much kinder to have it preserved.
The Monster Zoo is a purely exploitative operation and does nothing at all for conservation. It is interesting, or it is interesting for people like me, in spite of the fact that there really is nothing to write home about.
There were three species of Palm Civet in totally inadequate cages as is so often in Asian zoos. Here though the inadequacy was better than most and many palm civets would look on the accommodation here as heaven.
There is much that could be done here to improve many aspects of the operation with little effort or expense but I doubt there is any interest or it would have been done already.
Now I have found the place again I will probably return but likely not for another couple of years.
Covered Yard Area
Zoo News Digest
Follow news and views of zoos at Zoo News Digest
More by this Author
Taman Safari Indonesia is a large commercial zoo located a short distance from Jakarta. It is a popular collection with tremendous potential to make genuine contribution to conservation.
You Know You Are A Zoo Keeper When something is seen, said or happens which makes you realize that you are a member of a unique profession where what is ordinary to you is extraordinary to outsiders.
The difference between a good and a bad zoo is not black and white. The article describes a personal zoo journey and raises issues for people to think about.