A Frolicking San Diego Zoo Excursion

Member Rating 5 out of 5 by goodtogo on April 18, 2007

Our friendly City Sightseeing bus tour driver, Emmitt, a lifelong San Diego native, suggested we disembark to spend a half day at the San Diego Zoo. So that’s what we did. Having heard about "the world-famous San Diego Zoo," we were nevertheless surprised by its size. Being pressed for time, we decided first take in as much as we could via the zoo’s own bus tour. I recommend taking this tour when you arrive—preferably in the early morning when the animals are out. Try to sit on the right side facing the driver to get a better view. We were lucky to see so many animals from the bus. The only animal that didn’t make an appearance was the polar bear. Our driver noted special shows or feeding times for some of the animals.

The tour also helps you get the lay of the land: you’ll traverse much of its 100 acres, learn about its exotic plant life, and plan which areas to revisit. With our overview of the zoo complete, we realized the enormity of our task: we had to hustle to see our favorite animals up-close and catch our city bus home. We were able to revisit our favorites: the hippo, pandas, monkeys, and koalas. The hippo was visible underwater through a transparent wall. It’s amazing how long it could hold its breath before raising its nostrils above water. We had fun trying to hold our breath for as long. Human lung capacity doesn’t compare to a hippo’s. The pandas drew us too. My 7 year-old daughter commented that the large crowds were "annoying" since they blocked her view but said she "learned a lot" from the commentary of the panda expert. She was surprised that pandas aren’t aware that they are giving birth until they actually see their baby. I think this fact pleased about her mom’s attentiveness…

My daughter loved the antics of the Allen’s Swamp Monkeys, even remembering their names when questioned about her favorite animals at the zoo a month later. She was fascinated by their acrobatics, their tail-grabbing, and their general frolicking as they played in their tree house. We had to pry her away half an hour later. To us, the cutest animal was the koala. You could see the koalas both in their native habitat, the eucalyptus tree, and up-close, in a special glass viewing exhibit. Shy creatures, they tended to avoid eye contact with humans. Be patient for them to turn their heads towards you, and you’ll be rewarded with vulnerable-looking teddy-bear smiling at you. Memories of a visit to this zoo will leave you smiling, too. Enjoy your excursion to the zoo, but if you have time, spend an entire day there. Your family will appreciate taking their time, and your legs will, too. Boarding the city tour bus to leave the zoo, we were pleased that during the city tour to be seated.

San Diego Zoo and Safari Park
2920 Zoo Drive
San Diego, California, 92101
(619) 231-1515


©Travelocity.com LP 2000-2009