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The Cincinnati Zoo is one of the best zoos in the United States. It truly is one of the best reasons to visit Cincinnati with kids. And to make the most of your visit, here are my top tips for visiting the Cincinnati Zoo!
Tip #1: Buy your tickets online.
Admission tickets for the zoo are date-specific. This means that when you buy your tickets, you must tell them what day you will be visiting. The price of admission varies depending on the date. Tickets are more expensive on busy days. And the price may increase daily depending on anticipated crowd levels.
Save yourself time and money by buying your tickets in advance online. As soon as you know what day you will be visiting the zoo, buy your tickets. This will guarantee you get the best prices.
Plus, by getting your tickets online, you can skip the lines at the ticket booth and get a jump on the crowds once you arrive at the zoo.
You can buy your tickets on the zoo’s website.
Tip #2: Get there early.
Next on my list of tips for visiting the Cincinnati Zoo is to get there early. Getting to the zoo early allows you to get a head start on the crowds. And it will ensure you have plenty of time to see and do everything you want to do during your visit.
It will also allow you to see some of the more popular animals without a ton of people crowding around you. Additionally, it will give you your pick of parking spots.
The zoo opens each day at 10 am.
Tip #3: Go see the hippos first.
By far, the most popular residents at the Cincinnati Zoo are the hippos! Anytime they are on exhibit, there is a crowd of people there to admire them.
In 2017, Fiona, one of the zoo’s hippos, became a star when she was born premature at only 29 pounds! She is now a juvenile, is thriving, and still loves entertaining the crowds. These days, she is sharing the spotlight with her little brother, Fritz, who was born in August 2022.
So, to make your trip to the Cincinnati Zoo memorable, go see the hippos as soon as you arrive! This will give you the best view of these magnificent creatures.
Tip #4: Don’t miss the Night Hunters exhibit.
One of the most unique exhibits at the Cincinnati Zoo is the Night Hunters exhibit. This one is unlike anything you have ever seen at any other zoo.
The entire exhibit is dedicated to nocturnal animals. They use special lighting inside the building so the animals think that it is nighttime during the day when the zoo is open to guests. This gives you the unique opportunity to see them being active.
Some of the animals on display in this exhibit are an aardvark, a sand cat, a vampire bat, a greater bushbaby, and a fennec fox.
This was one of the highlights of our visit to the zoo! I loved this exhibit!
Tip #5: Take a walk with the kangaroos.
Another rare opportunity that you will find at the Cincinnati Zoo is walking amid the kangaroos. Here, instead of watching these fun animals from the opposite side of a fence, you can stroll through their exhibit with nothing separating you!
While inside the exhibit, you will be required to stay on the pathway. But, the kangaroos can roam freely wherever they want to go. So, your encounter could vary from watching them taking a nap 10 feet away or having them hop right up to you!
This definitely adds a level of thrill to your ordinary zoo encounter! If you love kangaroos, this is an exhibit not to be missed!
Tip #6: Go when it’s warm.
Another one of my top tips for visiting the Cincinnati Zoo is to go when it’s warm. Many of the animals they have cannot handle the cold temperatures of Ohio winters. So, these animals are taken off exhibit and kept backstage where it’s warmer during the colder months.
So, to see the most animals possible, visit the zoo during the warmer months of the year. This will ensure you get to see a greater variety of animals during your time at the zoo.
We visited the zoo in late November. While we were able to see a lot of animals, there were quite a few that we missed due to the chilly weather.
Tip #7: Stop for ice cream.
Graeter’s Ice Cream is the best ice cream in Cincinnati. And, lucky for you, they sell it at the Cincinnati Zoo! So, to make your trip to the zoo even more special, take a break and enjoy some of this yummy ice cream!
If you are there in the summer, it will be a sweet treat to help you cool off after walking around in the heat! Trust me on this one, you will not regret getting some ice cream during your day at the zoo!
The Cincinnati Zoo is an amazing zoo and is a must do for families. These tips for visiting the Cincinnati Zoo will help you make the most of your time there! Enjoy!
For a delicious breakfast in Cincinnati, see my post on Sugar n’ Spice Diner.
For some general trip planning tips, see how to take amazing vacations on any budget, how to plan an epic vacation, my ultimate guide to travel with kids, and how to improve your vacations.
P.S. Need help finding the best places to go on your family vacations? My Ultimate USA Bucket List for Families will instantly give you 60 of the best vacation destinations for families in the United States! Get it for FREE in the box below and start planning your next trip today! Plus, as a bonus, you will receive my weekly email newsletter full of family trip tips and inspiration!
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