Wild

I'm not sure if we all realize how lucky we are to have the Columbus Zoo so nearby. I have grown up less than 20 minutes away from elephants and polar bears my entire life and never have given it a second thought. But I do believe it is Columbus' greatest treasure.

We started getting zoo memberships (the Family Plus pass) after Larkyn turned one and really started enjoying the world around her. Every year, grandma gets us a pass for her birthday, and we use it pretty often in the summer and then of course for the Wildlights in the winter.

A few tips on going to the Columbus Zoo with kids:
  • Get a membership if you think you will go more than once. It pays for itself after a few visits plus parking.
  • Arrive when they open (usually 9:00 AM but check the site). Unless you like parking a mile away (there is always the tram in that case)
  • Remember where you park! I love watching people set off their car alarms to find it. Unless that someone is me.
  • Bring snacks. You can bring a five course dinner for all they care. There is seating EVERYWHERE and you don't want to be paying premium prices for food.
  • Break it in half. If you have the membership, don't try to make the kids see the whole zoo in one visit. The zoo is broken into 2 parts; one on either side of Riverside drive (connected by a tunnel). It is absurd to try to do it all at once and try to make it home for nap time.
  • If you can't make it first thing in the morning, wait until the last few hours and leave at closing time. We have found that the animals are much more lively in the evening and have seen some really cool things at closing time.
  • If you are like me, you'll need coffee for these trips. There is a Tim Hortons at Hard and Sawmill roads on your way down to Riverside. There is also one on Riverside and 161 if you're coming from that way, there is one on Powell road near Sawmill Pkway OR if you miss those, there is one right inside the gates. Beware: They don't sell Timbits, so don't promise those to anyone. Ahem.
Some of our favorite zoo activities...
We allllways brush the goats. I know I have pictures somewhere of me doing the same thing.

 If you want to feed the giraffes for $2, go there first thing before the line gets too long. You get 3 pieces of lettuce, so have that camera ready.

 For $1 each, you can ride the train. We love the train.

 I will do a full review of Boo At the Zoo this fall, but we have gone twice. We get as much wear out of our costumes as we can, so this is one more chance. There are candy stops all around and the whole zoo is decorated for Halloween. And the weather is always spot-on!

 Save the train for one trip and the carousel for the other. The carousel happens to be this little girl's favorite thing in the whole world and well worth the $1.


She always knows I have snacks for the zoo and is ready to eat them as soon as we get there. Luckily, like I said, you can stop almost anywhere and find a bench or picnic table.

The details...

4850 W Powell Rd
Powell, OH 43065
(614) 645-3400

There are so many different kinds of ticket prices and memberships that I would rather direct you to their admission page than list them here. We always get the $120 Family Plus membership, which allows our family and two unnamed guests. I have also heard people who split them (moms and grandmas, for instance) and list each other as the named guests. 

1 comment:

Nana said...

Perfect day for the zoo!

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