To Zoo or Not to Zoo? That is the question when thinking of something fun to do in San Diego.. My answer: To ZOO!!
I have been to the San Diego Zoo a couple times now and each time is a different experience but always loads of fun, especially for the kids. My husband, 4 year old daughter and I went ahead and got season passes this year since they pretty much pay for themselves with just 2 visits!
This gorgeous Zoo is conveniently located in Balboa Park which is pretty much smack dab in the middle of San Diego! So getting there isn’t much of a trek at all. Parking is always a breeze and I can never quite get over how gorgeous the landscape of the SD Zoo is – so many tropical plants and flowers greeting you as you walk in and dancing about the entire park make for exploring that much more lovely and refreshing. My friend Amanda wrote an article about five reasons you should go to the zoo, but when we went this time, we saw some other really great exhibits that she didn’t mention! Let me tell you why I absolutely think that the San Diego Zoo is great for kids!
One of our favorite stops is usually the Bird Aviary! The first time I took my daughter she was a bit skiddish of the free flying birds above her head but with some pep talking the second visit she was looking forward to it and enjoyed it so much. It’s neat to see so many different types of birds amongst each other and free to fly in a large area. Kids love watching animals that are actually moving in the zoo, and the birds never disappoint. They are always in action, doing something the kids can enjoy watching. The last time we visited they had a simulated rain fall in the center of the Aviary too which created a nice mist around the entire place that seemed to perk up the birds.
Another cool stop is the Polar Bear Plunge! How funny is it to check out Polar Bears in Southern California? But fact is, as these bears were migrated down here they very quickly adapted to warmer weather and the zoo keepers even found that they would no longer enter the super cold waters they were accustomed to up North. They began to prefer the warmer more “natural San Diego” temperatures.. but really who blames them?! This exhibit is also extra fun for kids because of the little play area of fake seal caves. It’s also an amazing photo opp where they can pop their heads out of what looks like the ice next to fake little seal heads. Hehe!
Amongst all the beautiful animals to observe, from Pandas & Tigers & Elephants to Hippos & Monkies & Giraffes, there are also loads of snack shacks and places to get a meal or fresh drink as you walk the park to keep your bellies full and whistle wet in the San Diego sun. The San Diego Zoo is great for kids especially because of this, as it’s easy to keep the kiddos happy all day long when you can jump in a short line, close to your next attraction and get some ice cream or a snack quickly! Also you can find lots of face paint huts which is always a hit with the kiddos as well as souvenir shops with all kinds of wonderful gifts for a reasonable price.
But what is one of the BEST parts of the San Diego Zoo? For sure the variety they offer for you to view it from! We loved seeing it by the guided double decker bus our first visit and this most recent one enjoyed getting way up high in the sky with the Skyfari. Also available to check out are the Kangaroo Bus & of course the awesome animal encounters.
No matter where you start and what you decide to make part of your personal day at the San Diego Zoo, you will leave with a feeling of awe for these amazing animals & refreshed after being in this beautifully landscaped zoo! The money is well worth your while and this is such a wonderful way to spend the day as a family. Let me tell you, the San Diego Zoo is great for kids!