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Oregon Zoo

4001 SW Canyon Rd., Portland, Oregon 97221 | 503-226-1561
29 Reviews
Type: Animals, Nature & Gardens, and Hiking & Walking
Ages: Ages 2 — adult
Cost: $$
Hours of operation: Visit website; season hours vary

The Oregon Zoo is the home to many animals from all over the world, like Asian elephants, Arctic polar bears, and even Peruvian penguins. You can gain a better knowledge of the natural world in which these animals originate from.

One tuesday of each month is '$2 Tuesday' (everyone gets in for $4).
   
ZOOLIGHTS:  
Zoolights is a seasonal attraction (during winter break) that's  located all over the zoo, and takes place nightly from sundown (around 4:30 pm) to 8 pm. The zoo comes alive with thousands of twinkling holiday lights, depicting animal and nature scene, offering colorful tunnels to go through, and bright pathways to walk down. Plan to arrive at the zoo in the afternoon if you want to have the energy to stay into the evening (your zoo admission ticket gets you into the after-hours Zoo Lights, too) or come just for the lights and purchase a discounted Zoo Lights ticket. During Zoo Lights, dining options in the park stay open late, and kiosks open for hot chocolate and coffee and other treats. Some animals are still viewable during this time, but if you are serious about seeing the exhibits, get into the zoo earlier in the day.


29 Reviews for Oregon Zoo

December 23 2010
0 families found this helpful
Violetwhite_word
"Will be great...in the Summer!"

The Oregon Zoo is always a great place to take the kids.  The Northwest Experience and Stellar Cove are fantastic, with some great up-close encounters with bears, bobcats, cougars, bald eagles, sea lions, and otters.  We also love going to see the elephants, and most specifically SAMUDRA, the new baby elephant.  The other Africa exhibits are also decent.  We love the fruit bats!  The polar bears are always great to see.  There are also lots of great lessons to help teach the kids about global warming and what they can do make the world a better place. 
Lately, several animals have been taken off exhibit and exhibits have been closed.  There are several areas of the zoo that are currently under contruction also.  It looks like the wolves are now back, which is always great and the new 'Predetors of Serengeti' area is due to be opening this summer along with 'Red Ape Reserve'.  That will make the zoo even more fun and will give the animals much better spaces to live in.
There are some indoor exhibits as well.  We recently enjoyed the turtles.

April 23 2014
0 families found this helpful
Violetwhite_word
"Toddler love"

Although under construction, the Oregon Zoo is still my toddler's favorite activity.  Watching the baby lions jump playfully on their father has to be a highlight.  
Zoo officials are rebuilding the elephant habitat and rerouting the zoo train so that when you're riding, you can see animals instead of the backsides of the buildings.  
Traditionally, my son and I start with the NW native section of the zoo and then continue on at the bottom.  Due to construction, they have blocked off the bottom and make you walk back up the hill to continue on to the rest of the zoo.  We have avoided that section because we didn't want to walk back up, but the last time we were there we ventured down and we were so glad that we did.  The condors were on display and were spectacular.  
Even under construction, the Oregon Zoo is the place to be this spring and summer.

August 20 2012
0 families found this helpful
Violetwhite_word
"A nice but not spectacular zoo. "

We were trying to figure out a place to meet up with friends of our family- somewhere that would appeal to four adults as well as two preschoolers. Someone suggested the zoo and we all happily agreed.
We visited on a very busy day and the main parking lot was full. We followed the signs to the offsite parking, parked our car and headed to the shuttle stop. They were running shuttles fairly often, so we only had to wait about 10 minutes or so.
We're members of the zoo in Seattle, so were able to get half price admission, since this is a reciprocal zoo.
My kids enjoyed both walking around the zoo and being carted about in a rental stroller. We thought the zoo was a decent size- lots of animals to see, but we were able to see most everything in an afternoon.  
This is an award-winning zoo, but compared to Seattle's Woodland Park zoo and the San Diego Zoo (which we had visited shortly before- I know it's an unfair comparison, but it was fresh in my mind), the Portland zoo seems very outdated. Many of the habitats were smaller than I expected, and often the animals seemed very cramped.
Still, it was a good place for both adults and kids to hang out and we all had an enjoyable afternoon.

November 05 2011
0 families found this helpful
Violetwhite_word
"Go early"

I love visiting the zoo with my son (20 months) any time of the year. If you live in or around the area I would suggest becoming a zoo membership because it deffinatly pays for itself. The food is rather expensive so if you are planning on staying for a few hours (who wouldnt??) I would pack some snacks and drinks, which is completely aloud. Its fun to sit in the giant lawn and have a picnic :) also i would suggest going as soon as the zoo opens! Later in the afternoon the zoo gets really crowded, but in the morning vey few people are there and all the animals are out! Have fun!

June 30 2011
0 families found this helpful
Violetwhite_word
"our favorite zoo"

We visit the zoo every time we make a trip up to Portland to visit the grandparents.  It's such an amazing zoo, so much to see.   So many animals and the shows are great too.  Highly recommend a trip to this zoo it's a must see for the whole family.

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Tizzle
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January 11 2011
0 families found this helpful
Violetwhite_word
"Super nice and lots to see!"

We love to go to the Oregon Zoo.  There is so much to see.  We take a different route everytime and see different stuff everytime.  We spend hours there and never see it all.  But that is nice so everytime is different.  Make sure to take your stroller because you will do a lot of walking.  

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currygolf
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January 11 2011
0 families found this helpful
Violetwhite_word
"Oregon Zoo"

This is a great zoo.  It is easy to access....right on the Max Light Rail line.  Lots of parking too.  Kids love the zoo train and there is a children's petting zoo as well.  Lots of kid friendly food available but it's not cheap.  Really nice mix of environments and the summer concert series is great.

January 10 2011
0 families found this helpful
Violetwhite_word
"A Nice Zoo"

We are members of the Oregon Zoo, so my two sons, ages 3 and 1, and I go to the zoo a few times a month (weather permitting). The Oregon Zoo has some great exhibits, including elephants, monkeys, and penguins. We can often catch zoo keepers feeding animals, as well as they have multiple opportunities for kids to have hands-on experiences with animals. Overall, the zoo is a nice attraction for families if you are in the Portland area.

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rhamilto
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January 20 2011
0 families found this helpful
Violetwhite_word
"Great day at the zoo"

We took our son to the Oregon Zoo and had a great time.  He loved looking at all the animals and they have recently added some exhibits like the sahara with lions and some great animals.  There is a big open grassy area where shows are put on at times and it also makes a great place to eat lunch.

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derekat
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January 11 2011
0 families found this helpful
Violetwhite_word
"children love it.."

My children love to go to Zoo. they want to play with the animals there. its very educative. they have train in the zoo where kids njoy climbing on the train for a ride. they love to see the huge elephant and monkeys and play with the other games.very educative for kids.

January 10 2011
0 families found this helpful
Violetwhite_word
"an awesome place but busy"

It's like every mom in the county goes to the zoo every time I'm there.  It's a fun place for kids of all ages to go, but it's always so busy just getting through with your stroller is often a pain.  The concerts are amazing though and the zoo is always clean and fun.

doelhaggan
doelhaggan
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January 12 2011
0 families found this helpful
Violetwhite_word
"We love it!"

My family including adults love to go to Oregon Zoo. It's entertaining for my kids since each was 1 year old. Now they're 4 and 7. When they get older, they can read about the animals and enjoy the zoo key where they can listen to info about animals. It's inexpensive and sold in the zoo shop.
Membership is really inexpensive and pays off. We also love the events there like the elephant's birthday and of course the winter zoo lights.

January 10 2011
0 families found this helpful
Violetwhite_word
"Awesome way to spend a day!"

We have been going to the Oregon Zoo since my oldest daughter was a baby (10 years!) and we still LOVE it. They are constantly adding exhibits, like the lions and the red apes. The exhibits are so naturally done that it gives you the feeling that you're really there! Whether it's sunny or raining a trip to the zoo always gets a cheer from my three kiddos.

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sestacy
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February 18 2011
0 families found this helpful
Violetwhite_word
"Average zoo for a quick getaway"

This a average sized zoo for the Portland, OR metro area.  It is not the biggest sized zoo around and a lot looks outdated, but still a good family activity.  It has all the usual animals and a good way to pass the day fun for all ages.  The food is typical hot dogs, pizza and elephant ears.  They have a farm where you can go learn about farm animals as well.  This place has a train that you can take a trip up to the Rose Gardens and visit that park as well.  

During November through New Years they have Zoo lights.  They light up the whole park at night with christmas lights.  This is a great activity for the family.  Every where you look is something with christmas lights.  Even when you take the train they have displays on the hillsides.  During the weekend this place is packed.  If you can go during a week day it will be much better.

January 10 2011
0 families found this helpful
Violetwhite_word
"Great zoo with beautiful scenery"

This is by far the best zoo we have been to (and we've been to zoos all over the country). The exhibits are absolutely fantastic, and they have different areas of the zoo for animals from every continent- including the North American Pacific Northwest (local wildlife!) The zoo is built into the forest, so there are tons of paths and hills, but the whole zoo is stroller/wagon friendly. There are even spots in the zoo where the kids can pet the animals! And they are always renovating, so the zoo is always in great shape!

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leannecroz
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March 10 2011
0 families found this helpful
Violetwhite_word
"ZooLights 2010"

We love the zoo any time of the year, but this year we went to the zoo lights in December for the first time.  It was beautiful, we managed to find a drizzly night, that wasn't pooring, so there weren't too many people.  We got right on the train, this was the boy's favorite part.  You get to pretty much see all the lights and everything from the train.  They also enjoyed looking at the lights through the special 3D glasses we purchased, made them even more dazzling.  I don't think I would do this with a child under 5 because of the weather mostly, I think they would be too wet and cold too enjoy the walking after the train.  I think it would be too tame for over 13 as well.

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kkraupa
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January 10 2011
0 families found this helpful
Violetwhite_word
"Place to be!"

The Oregon Zoo is so much fun and so educational for children! We normally go during the spring and summer because thats when the weather is most appropriate but we recently went for the Zoo Lights and that event is a must go for all children! You ride the train and the zoo is completely "dressed up" ( daughters words) in Christmas Lights! Add some hot chocolate and candy canes and its a fun trip for all.

rebalou
rebalou
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January 10 2011
0 families found this helpful
Violetwhite_word
"LOVE the Oregon Zoo!!!"

We love the Oregon Zoo and recently purchased a family season pass. The cost is $80 and allows you entrance to the zoo for an entire year (parking included).  The small investment will pay for itself in no time.  There are SO many exhibits at this zoo and my daughter just loves it there.  They have lions now which is great and all the regular favorites:  polar bars, bald eagles, bats, orangutans, you-name-it!  It's a very fun, clean and well laid out zoo - definitely worth your time!  

January 25 2011
0 families found this helpful
Violetwhite_word
"Very cool place!"

We love to regularly visit the oregon zoo. It's so fun and very clean and has so many cool fun attractions. I never get tired of this place.  Our kids can choose how many animal exibits to see for the day since it's so big and we can't always see everything.

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mgat5
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January 10 2011
0 families found this helpful
Violetwhite_word
"Awesome place"

The Oregon Zoo is great! We go at least once a year and have been considering a year membership now that our son is almost four years old. We didn't do it before because of the weather in Oregon... however, it is time!
They also offer concerts during the summer which is a wonderful way to spend a warm afternoon. And during Christmas season the Zoo Lights are a must!!

 
 

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