This Woodland Park Zoo post is courtesy of our contributor Cheryl of Kids On A Plane…Seattle, Washington is one of my family’s favourite cities to visit. Known for outdoor activities, a great food scene and of course coffee, Seattle is a very kid-friendly destination for families looking for somewhere to visit that isn’t too hot or too cold.
Woodland Park Zoo:
During our last visit to Seattle, my family spent the day at Woodland Park Zoo. It was our first time there and we had a ton of fun – we kind of wish we had done this sooner. Previous visits had us visiting popular attractions in downtown Seattle and never leaving the city centre.
Located in the Phinney Ridge neighbourhood just north of downtown Seattle, Woodland Park Zoo is home to over 1000 animals from almost 300 different species. From red pandas, komodo dragons, to flamingos, penguins and my family’s favourite – sloths, the zoo is popular with tourists and locals.
Woodland Park Zoo has received multiple Best National Exhibit awards from the Association of Zoos & Aquariums – ranking second to the Bronx Zoo in New York.
In addition to all the unique animals they have and the awards they’ve won, here are 6 reasons families should visit Woodland Park Zoo.
Animal Encounters Experiences
There are several ways for families to interact with animals at the zoo. Depending on season, visitors can feed the giraffes, meet a tortoise, learn what it’s like to be a penguin keeper or feed free-flying Australian parrots.
Zoomazium – Indoor Playground
Great for rainy days (it is Seattle afterall!), Zoomazium is an indoor nature-themed area geared to children up to 8 years of age with several different play areas including a stage for shows and demonstrations, a rope bridge and a 20-foot tree for brave climbers.
Habitat Discovery Loop – Outdoor Playground
The Habitat Discovery Loop is an outdoor play space featuring caves, slides and statues where younger kids can burn off some energy. Both our children enjoyed taking a break from walking from exhibit to exhibit and playing here. The Family Farm is located nearby and great for petting zoo fanatics.
Variety of Food Choices
Guests are welcome to pack their own lunch and snacks and bring them to Woodland Park Zoo. Families looking to grab a bite during their visit will be surprised by the variety of food choices. On top of the standard burgers and pizza fare, guests can try clam chowder, organic beef burgers and wild caught seafood.
Parents with young children should be aware that food vendors do not supply lids or straws for drinks so it’s a good idea to bring your own water bottle or sippy cup to transfer drinks for your kids.
Multiple Ways to Save on Admission
There are different ways families can save on admission to keep costs down. Woodland Park Zoo is 1 of 5 participating attractions on the Seattle CityPASS so families can not only save at the zoo but other popular tourist attractions too.
Guests taking the bus to the zoo can save $2 off regular admission by presenting a valid Metro bus transfer as proof of ridership.
Discounts are also available on select rainy days which save families 50% on regular admission rates.
Large Enough for a Day Trip
Woodland Park Zoo is fairly large with many walking trails and exhibits to visit. We spent almost 4 hours at the zoo and still didn’t see everything. A stroller that can handle rugged terrain (many of the trails are either rocky or muddy) will come in handy for parents with young children as well as rubber boots or water proof shoes.
There are five different parking lots around the zoo and two separate entrances so if there is a must-see or must-do on your itinerary, make sure you know which entrance to go to. Woodland Park Zoo is located in a residential area and if you plan your visit early enough (especially on weekends) you might be able to find street parking which can save a few dollars.
Another recommendation for parents who want to get the lay of the land before their family’s visit is to download the free Woodland Park Zoo app.
We’d like to send a big THANK YOU to Cheryl for sharing her fun adventures with us! Read more about Cheryl’s travel tips on her blog Kids on A Plane as well as her Facebook page. I love the sneak peeks of her adventures on Instagram!