Cincinnati Zoo and Botanical Garden

Member Rating 5 out of 5 by Shady Ady on May 30, 2006

Cincinnati Zoo is worth a trip for people of all ages and I thoroughly enjoyed my time here as part of my birthday surprise. It’s a vibrant, busy, bright, and noisy place, famed now as much for its conservation work and research as for its entertainment value.

The zoo is world famous and was rated the number one attraction in Cincinnati and one of the top five zoos in the nation by Zagat Survey. It has also been recognized by Child Magazine as one of "The 10 Best Zoos for Kids." Over 1.2 million people visit the 500 animal and 3,000 plant species annually, set in award winning exhibits.

The zoo is the second oldest zoo in the US, having first opened its doors in 1875. It's 70 acres in size and sometimes it’s hard to believe that you are actually in the middle of the city, as the landscaping of the zoo, allows you to forget all that is outside. This is not a huge zoo, and does not demand a great deal of walking, yet there is a great deal to see. The best parts, by far, are the newest. The award-winning jungle trails, on the site of the old car parks, are quite simply superb, featuring jungle trails in among rain forest plants and trees where you'll encounter bonobos, orangutans, and lemurs. The indoor exhibits (Wings of the World, Manatee Springs, Insect World, and the Nocturnal House) are as good as you will find in any zoo anywhere. They have all the big animals to, but for me the biggest attraction was there Sumatran Rhinos. These are so endangered there is a chance they will become extinct in the wild in our generation. Cincinnati Zoo has successfully bred the first ever Sumatran born in captivity, called Andalas. I would suggest seeing this strange creature while there is still the chance.

I had an excellent time here and the way the zoo is designed means that you can get to almost touching distance of the animals. This gives excellent photo opportunities throughout. There were a few problems though that were slightly worrying. Many of the animals seemed to be anxious and stressed and were carrying out the same repetitive routines. Animals showing these symptoms included the Sumatran Rhinos, Polar Bears and Cats. Some of the enclosures also seem much too small, for example the bears.

The zoo’s opening hours are between 9am and 4pm in Winter and 9am to 5pm, in Summer. Admission to the zoo is $12.95 for adults and $7.95 for children. Parking is $6.50, but there is free parking right outside of the zoo, and in the surrounding roads. The zoo is easy to find upon reaching Cincinnati and there are full directions on their website depending on where you are travelling from.

More information can be found on their website at, or by phoning +1 (513) 281- 4700. The zoo can also be reached by email at
Cincinnati Zoo and Botanical Garden
3400 Vine Street
Cincinnati, Ohio, 45220
(513) 281-4700

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