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How digital audio tour transformed the visitor experience at exotic zoos around the globe

Tourist attractions around the world are utilizing innovative solutions to craft memorable, interesting experiences for their visitors. When different zoos of the world, such as Kiwi Park Queenstown, Zoo Pilsen, Zoo Bratislava, Crocodile Zoo Protivín, Zoo Jihlava, and alike chose to adopt the digital audio guide system by SmartGuide, their goal was evident: to let the visitors enjoy the view of the animals more by eliminating any unnecessary visual distractions.

Kiwi park at Queenstown


SmartGuide's audio guide system has been meticulously designed to enable captivating zoo tours, enabling visitors to explore the intriguing animal world. It seamlessly marries education with entertainment and dissolves language barriers, welcoming global visitors to enjoy the zoo independently. The intuitive interface ensures a visit free from the scourge of visual pollution.

This case study explores how the SmartGuide digital tour guide platform has changed things for the better at Zoo Plzeň, Zoo Bratislava, Crocodile Zoo Protivín, Kiwi Park Queenstown, Liberec Zoo, or Jihlava Zoo.

Crocodile zoo

Incredible encounters at the zoos and the challenges they pose for guiding visitors

At Zoo Plzeň, visitors can marvel at the majestic sight of the 'Birds of Prey and Owls' pavilion, showcasing the largest collection of raptors in the Czech Republic. Zoo Bratislava, apart from its famed DinoPark, is also the only zoo in Slovakia to have successfully bred the endangered snow leopard. On the other hand, the Crocodile Zoo Protivín is globally recognized for successfully incubating the eggs of the Siamese crocodile, a critically endangered species, in artificial conditions (and displays the widest range of crocodile species in Europe). Kiwi Park, Queenstown, provides an authentic experience of New Zealand's nocturnal wildlife, including the elusive and fascinating glowworms. It provides a unique opportunity to observe these majestic creatures in a close-to-nature environment. Lastly, Jihlava Zoo stands out with its 'Shadow of the Jungle' exhibit, allowing visitors to walk through a tropical rainforest filled with exotic birds and reptiles.

Zoo Bratislava

In spite of their popularity, visitors have faced certain challenges when visiting these zoos in the past. Language barriers have been a major issue for foreign visitors who struggle to understand information about animals or find their way around the zoo. Limited sources of information have made it difficult for visitors to plan their trip ahead of time or even know what to expect once they arrive at the zoo. In addition, the presence of intrusive visual elements has further intensified the issues surrounding the aesthetic quality and visual allure of the zoos.

Bratislava zoo embraces digital audio tour guide app SmartGuide

Thankfully, these cherished tourist destinations, beloved by visitors of all ages, have successfully overcome these challenges with the assistance of SmartGuide - a groundbreaking digital audio guide solution at the forefront of innovation.

SmartGuide’s innovative tour guide solution accompanying visitors of Zoological parks

Let's take a look at a collection of challenges and the unique solutions that SmartGuide has developed to elevate the visitor experience at these zoos:

1. Zoos struggled to engage visitors with exhibits. Static signs and pamphlets provided basic information, resulting in a surface-level understanding of animals. Visitors desired more interactive experiences. Encouraging exploration of lesser-known exhibits proved challenging.

Solution: SmartGuide has transformed zoo experiences by replacing static signs and pamphlets with an interactive mobile app. It provides in-depth information about each animal, such as its habitats, behaviors, and conservation status. This enriches understanding and creates a more immersive experience. SmartGuide also highlights lesser-known exhibits. By tracking visitor behavior, zoos can gather valuable data to improve exhibit planning and promotional strategies, enhancing operations and visitor satisfaction.

Digital audio tour transformed the visitor experience at the exotic zoo

2. Language barriers at zoos hindered the visiting experience for many visitors.

Solution: SmartGuide helps overcome language barriers. It provides visitors with multilingual audio guides (with transcripts) that can replace large information boards. Thanks to the autotranslation feature available in SmartGuide's free content management system, cloning existing tour content into other languages is a matter of literally one click. This allows the zoos on SmartGuide to provide guides in various languages, using 2 or 3 language variants as standard.

3. Minimizing visual pollution and intrusive elements to help maintain aesthetic appeal in zoos.

Solution: SmartGuide allows the zoos to design obstruction-free viewing areas and naturalistic enclosures, offering visitors an immersive experience without distracting visuals. Signages and necessary installations with QR codes can be easily designed to blend with the natural environment, ensuring the visual allure of zoos while minimizing obtrusive design elements.

4. The zoos struggled with managing visitor flow and preventing overcrowding. This often led to discomfort, extended waiting periods, and a diminished visitor experience. 

Solution: SmartGuide's real-time data and analytics capabilities offered a solution to this issue. By tracking visitor movement and analyzing trends, zoos can identify high-traffic areas and times, enabling them to manage crowd flow more effectively and enhance visitor comfort.

Zoo Liberec

5. A significant challenge for zoos was the need to cater to a wide range of visitor interests and preferences. Traditional visitor experiences often struggled to offer personalized itineraries that resonated with each individual's unique interests.

Solution: SmartGuide's platform offered the opportunity for zoos to tailor the narrative for different audiences (such as adults and children, for example). It also enabled visitors to consume content based on their unique interests. From focusing on specific animal species to learning about different conservation efforts, SmartGuide enhances visitor satisfaction and encourages repeat visits by offering a personalized zoo experience.

digital audio tour transformed the visitor experience at exotic zoos - PILSEN ZOO

The aim to provide an innovative tour guide app to their visitors exemplifies the dedication of these zoos to enriching their experience while also advancing the mission of wildlife conservation and education.

The implementation of SmartGuide has transformed the visitor experience at these zoos, enhancing accessibility and understanding for people of all ages and backgrounds. Moreover, SmartGuide offers an interactive and educational way to explore the zoo, making the experience enjoyable for everyone. Kateřina Misíková, the Marketing Manager at Zoo Pilsen, explained their experience: 

“We first tested the SmartGuide application in the Czech language and, for the 2020 season, we decided to add other language versions for visitors from foreign countries. Team SmartGuide was very professional and helpful in preparing the guide.”


Overall, SmartGuide has been successful in transforming the visitor experience at zoos around the globe by making them accessible to all visitors regardless of language barriers or age group, while reducing visual pollution. Through its innovative technology, SmartGuide has allowed visitors from different countries to explore these zoological parks in an interactive way that is both fun and educational.

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Discover engrossing travel experiences with SmartGuide's audio tours. You can implement the same strategy to your destination or tourist attraction and help your visitors discover the unexplored gems with SmartGuide.