If you’ve ever had the urge to ride a giant firefly, the Bronx has you covered. Located right next to the butterfly exhibit at the Bronx Zoo is a wholly different kind of entomological exhibit: the kind that doubles as an amusement ride.
In lieu of horses and other mammalian and mythological beasts, the Bronx Zoo Bug Carousel features 64 different types of insects that you can mount — including fireflies, beetles, grasshoppers, and ladybugs. There are also two stationary chariots: a monarch butterfly and a dung beetle. Each figure is hand-carved from basswood and painted to look just like its real-life critter counterpart.
Billing itself as the first and only carousel with a lineup entirely of insects, the Bug Carousel has been a staple of children’s visits to the zoo since its opening in 2005. The ride’s meant to be both fun and educational, and you can admire painted murals running along the circumference of the center pole, capturing caterpillars’ transformation into butterflies. To complete the experience, the carousel’s music was even composed with real insect sounds from the Wildlife Conservation Society.
Know Before You Go
Open year-round, the carousel has sliding glass doors that close in the wintertime.