Woodland Park Zoo | Our Favorite Seattle Attraction
You can go to the top of the Space Needle 100 times, and the view is always the same. You can hop on The Great Wheel 50 times, and it’s the same ride over and over again. That’s not the case with Woodland Park Zoo in Seattle. The place is always changing (and animals are extremely unpredictable), so no trip to the zoo is ever the same twice.
I’ll be honest: Woodland Park Zoo (601 N. 59th St.) is our favorite Seattle attraction. I get just as excited to visit the zoo at 32 as I did when I was 10. It’s easily the greatest place around. Tove knows I enjoy Woodland Park Zoo so much that she bought me a membership for my birthday, and she plans on becoming a member next year. Yes, we LOVE the zoo.
There’s a reason we love Woodland Park Zoo so much. It’s home to more than 1,100 animals, which represent almost 300 different species. The creatures range from tiny insects to monstrous elephants. The zoo is only a short drive away, but you feel like you’re in a different world when you’re there. It’s amazing to see some of the planet’s most amazing beasts all in one place.
The animals at Woodland Park Zoo are grouped into the different areas they’re found around the world. The Northern Trail features grizzly bears, sea otters and mountain goats; Tropical Asia highlights orangutans, elephants and komodo dragons; the African Savannah showcases lions, hippos and giraffes; Australia shows off wallabies and emus; the Tropical Rainforest has jaguars, lemurs and colobus monkeys; and the Temperate Forest features red pandas, flamingos and several other different types of birds. The list of animals at Woodland Park Zoo (which also includes penguins, snow leopards and wolves) goes on and on. My personal favorites are the sloth bears and gorillas, while Tove loves the giraffes.
If seeing animals isn’t enough for you — maybe feeding animals will do the trick. No, I’m not kidding. For a small fee (just $5) during the summer months, you can feed giraffes and elephants. The feedings typically only happen once a day for an hour, so be sure to check the Woodland Park Zoo website for more information. If you’re cool with feeding smaller creatures, there’s also a Willawong bird feeding station. It’s free with admission (and open all day long), but seed sticks are $1 each (cash only).
The fun at Woodland Park Zoo doesn’t stop there. The zoo also has a bug world, family farm (with pigs, cows and more), a nature-inspired indoor play space called Zoomazium (among other outdoor play areas), shows, restaurants, picnic tables and even a historic carousel. In other words, there’s no lack of entertainment at the zoo.
Woodland Park Zoo isn’t just fun though, it’s also very informative. There is extensive information about the animals around every exhibit, and there are also employees and zookeepers around the zoo who are ready and willing to answer your questions. On top of that, there are also several classes, camps and programs for kids and adults throughout the year at Woodland Park Zoo.
While the special events come at their own cost, normal entry into Woodland Park Zoo varies throughout the year. From May 1st-September 30th, it’s $18.75 for adults, $11.75 for children 3-12, and free for kids 2-and-under. From October 1st-April 30th, it costs $12.75 for adults, $8.75 for children 3-12, and it’s still free for kids 2-and-under. If you’re visiting from out-of-town, we highly recommend the Seattle CityPASS. It saves you 43% on Seattle’s biggest tourist attractions, including Woodland Park Zoo.
Have you ever visited Woodland Park Zoo? If not, what in the world are you waiting for?! What is your favorite animal to see at the zoo? We’d love to hear from you! Please leave your comments below or connect with us on Facebook, Twitter and Google+. Don’t forget to also visit Seattle Bloggers for more fun attractions around the Emerald City.