Apart from the pressing need to protect individual endangered species, the inhabitants of the now urbanised region had to be reminded that the way we connect to our natural surroundings and the creatures we share the land with help us maintain our humanity. The privately-funded Attica Zoological Park is currently the only large-scale zoo in Greece. Initially a bird park, it has been expanding since 2000, when it first opened its gates to the public.
The vision behind the Park, as expressed by founder and co-owner Jean-Jacques Lesueur, is to create the largest nature-themed attraction in Southeast Europe, to the end of promoting biodiversity and raising awareness about the dire consequences of species extinction on the environment, through fun educational activities addressed to both children and adults.
Apart from the impressive original Aviaries, the Park now covers 200,000 square meters and is home to 2,000 animals of 350 different species with about 60% of them being rare or facing extinction. In the near future, an evolution museum focusing on the age of the dinosaurs, as well as an equally impressive aquarium, will be added to the current features, which include areas such as the World of Reptiles, the African Savannah, the Big Cats section, the Monkey Forest etc.