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“Glad to visit the ZOO made by the famous Jack Hanna who does the nature shows on TV,”
Review of Columbus Zoo

Columbus Zoo
Ranked #1 of 20 things to do in Powell
Certificate of Excellence
More attraction details
Attraction details
Owner description: Home to more than 11,000 animals representing nearly 600 species from around the globe, the Columbus Zoo and Aquarium leads and inspires by connecting people and wildlife. The Zoo complex is a recreational and education destination that includes the 22-acre Zoombezi Bay water park and 18-hole Safari Golf Course. The Columbus Zoo and Aquarium also operates the Wilds, a 10,000-acre conservation center and safari park located in southeastern Ohio. The Zoo is a regional attraction with global impact; annually contributing $4 million of privately raised funds to support conservation projects worldwide. A 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, the Columbus Zoo has earned Charity Navigator’s prestigious 4-star rating.
Reviewed 4 weeks ago

Four hours of walking and never got to Africa during the day but in addition to Zoo visiting, the nighttime had us at a dinner event for Muskingum University where we could celebrate Jack, the famous graduate of Muskingum and feed the Giraffes and watch the Zebras by standing just outside the dining room. This was a day I will long remember.

How much sense it makes to give people with children choices of boat rides and other activities for which they pay extra but still let those who only want to see the animals, do their thing. I like it that the extra cost goes towards research.

Thank Travelwaves
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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"jack hanna"
in 93 reviews
"water park"
in 172 reviews
"polar bear"
in 97 reviews
"africa exhibit"
in 61 reviews
"north america"
in 32 reviews
"dinosaur island"
in 32 reviews
"boat ride"
in 68 reviews
"pony rides"
in 30 reviews
"animal habitats"
in 23 reviews
"cheetah run"
in 41 reviews
"wild lights"
in 24 reviews
"wide variety of animals"
in 23 reviews
"african safari"
in 23 reviews
"christmas lights"
in 26 reviews
"different areas"
in 24 reviews
"wear comfortable shoes"
in 22 reviews
"season pass"
in 22 reviews
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Reviewed 4 weeks ago

My family and I have visited many zoos around the world and have never witnessed such unique animal experiences all in one place as we did at the Columbus Zoo! We were amazed with how interactive you could be with many of the animals. What’s great about the zoo is that they have so many areas, but it is so well laid out that you can walk the entire park without feeling exhausted. I recommend checked out the outdoor areas that are popular early before it gets a little more crowded and midday sun, like Africa and North America.
Africa - We started off in Africa and enjoyed our first experience, getting up close and feeding the beautiful, imposing giraffes! What a thrill to see these gentle giants at you height from a lookout where walk up to you to be feed, under the watchful eye of the friendly zookeepers. WOW! Next was the lion den which has an amazing glass wall with a mock safari bush plane imbedded with its front half on the spectator side, the tail end in the lion enclosure. This provides a unique view of the ferocious felines as they relax on the plane wing, up against the glass, inches away from you. Our son was in awe. Another great concept in the Africa area is the “Watering Hole”, a huge natural habitat that is enclosed and viewed by visitors from an elevated area. The animals in the Africa domain are rotated in and out daily so they each get a turn to run in a large open space, including the ostriches, speedy cheetahs, flamingos, zebras, wildebeests and more. Also, in Africa, there are the fun camel rides, great for all ages.
North America – The best part for us was seeing the bears, who were right in your face, up against the glass including the Black and Brown Bears and our favorites, the Polar Bears. You must check them out at feeding time (see the daily schedule) they are so playful, diving, catch live fish that are released into their watering pool and you can watch this all from the ground level glass or the amazing underwater viewing area where they swim right by you and walk on the glass ceiling, so cool. Of course this area isn’t short of animal contact including pony rides and the Bob Evans My Farm with a huge barnyard petting area. There is a great playground for younger kids here too.
Asia Quest – If you want to cool off, Asia quest has an amazing indoor pavilion, next to a waterfall (home to the Siberian Musk Deer that hides at the bottom), that is well, air conditioned. Inside there are great exhibits of the bats, snakes, elephants, rhinos, monkeys and a sloth bear!? We also went to the huge outdoor area for the Asian elephants during feeding time and a great Q&A with their keepers, who you can tell just love these majestic animals.
Shores & Aquariums – There are more indoor animal havens here too with the aquarium which houses the manatees, sting rays, and various fish all swimming together, there is also a Sting Ray Bay encounter where you can pet the rays, check for opening times as it was closed off due to construction while we were there. You can pet sea urchins, horseshoe crabs, starfish and more at the Tide Pool Touch too. A diver is also in the tank feeding at certain times to answer questions and explain the features of the underwater creatures. There is a great outdoor, ocean themed park that the kids loved and animals to see like alligators and the playful Humboldt Penguins. Also, if you’re looking for a break from walking, check out the 4-D Theatre, there are different movies for the whole family.
Australia & the Islands – This area was so worth seeing, just for the Dinosaur Island alone; this boat ride brought you through the island where you are besieged by a vast array of animatronic, prehistoric beasts both small and Tyrannosauruses! Loved that! You should check out the Lorikeet Gardens where these colorful birds climb all over you. Another fantastic experience is the Kangaroo Walkabout, you can actually walk through the kangaroo enclosure as they hop by with the zookeepers close by of course.
Needless to say the Columbus Zoo is packed with things to do and I haven’t even mentioned the giant Zoombezi Bay water park and enormous gift shop! The animal interactions are phenomenal, the staff was super friendly and knowledgeable and it grounds and restrooms were so clean. I recommend the Zoo-it –all Pass if you love rides, the extra experiences and the movies like we do. We also opted for the 2-Day ticket so we could see everything and enjoy the Zoombezi Bay water park during the hottest times of the day (go early as possible to avoid lines on the water rides on busy days). Hope you enjoy it as much as we did, thanks to everyone at the Columbus Zoo for such an unforgettable visit!

Thank Jackie M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 4 weeks ago

This is a great zoo with a lot of thought put into the layout. While this review may seem a little on the negative side, please don't view the zoo that way. I am only listing the few minor things that bugged me, the rest was great. Plenty of food, drink, rest, and play areas. Parking is easy but the line can back up fast around opening time. While I like that the areas are spread into world areas, the walkways tend to get very tight in some places which can make it tough for people with Wheelchairs, wagons or large strollers getting past other people and groups. Another thing I don't really love is that there is a lot of signage that says where things are but not a specific direction to get people to flow in. Many times you turn a tight corner and run into a person coming from the other direction. I also felt like there were gift shops than necessary, however, I understand they have a good reason for this in that this zoo does a LOT of work rehabbing animals. Another downside to me was that I always felt like there wasn't enough to see. Some areas of the world only had about 8 animal species.

Thank dms5413
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 5 weeks ago via mobile

We had a fantastic day here. Our local zoo is a reciprocal member here so we got half off our tickets. It is pretty large so definitely plan on at least half a day. The food we ate was underwhelming. There are several animal sculptures throughout which made for fun breaks for our daughter. We recently visited the San Diego zoo and we liked the Columbus zoo so much better. There wasn't a crowd and everyone who worked here was friendly. Exhibits made it so easy to see the animals.

Thank Lauren S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 5 September 2018 via mobile

We visited the zoo with our 4 year old, specifically to enjoy a day a Jungle Jack’s Landing. Despite the extreme heat, we enjoyed ourselves. I would advise parents to check the listings of closed rides before buying a wrist band, as the value of it can decrease greatly if the rides your child is looking forward to are closed for the day. Also, make sure you bring plenty of your own beverages, as most of the concession carts throughout the zoo property are closed at this time of year. It can be a long thirsty walk back to the entrance!

Thank 33Shelly
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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