The Columbus Zoo and Aquarium

11 Jun

I love the zoo!  Recently I had the wonderful experience of sharing one of my favorite places to visit with my 3 year-old son.  I do believe I have created another zoo enthusiast.  My husband, Sassycas, and I took my son to the Columbus Zoo and Aquarium for his first-ever zoo visit to celebrate his 3rd birthday.  It couldn’t have been a better day.  Sunny, highs in the low 80s.  Perfect!

The Columbus Zoo and Aquarium gets better each time I visit.  Jack Hanna’s love of the animals shines through in the wonderful exhibits and generally enjoyable atmosphere throughout the park.  There are plenty of opportunities to interact with the animals and zoo staff and volunteers.  One of the highlights for my son was at the fox exhibit.  Even though the cute little white fox (near the bear habitats) slept in the corner of his cage the entire time we watched, a zoo staff lady came to talk to us and tell us all about the little fox.  She even had some fox fur pelt that my son got to pet.  (He thought that was awesome!)  She also let him touch bear claws from a black bear, a grizzly bear, and a polar bear.  (Again, he thought that was great!)

Another highlight for my son was the children’s area/petting zoo.  He got to actually use a large comb and groom the sheep.  My son thought that was ‘The Cat’s Meow.’   And yet another highlight… he rode his first carousel.  The Columbus Zoo has an early 20th century refurbished carousel and it is beautiful.  7 hours at the zoo just was not enough.  We had to skip about 1/3 of the exhibits just to get through.  We did not visit the touch pools on this visit.  (We had done a similar activity for my little guy’s 2nd birthday at the Newport Aquarium in Northern Kentucky.)  We did not get to see the elephants either this trip.  My son also LOVED the train ride.  It was only 5-10 minutes long, but for the low-cost of $1 per rider, you can’t go wrong.  The carousel also only cost an additional $1.   And, I believe if you are a zoo member, those attractions may be included in the annual fee.

I also learned a few things during my visit.  For one, I did not realize that the manatee exhibit was all for rehabilitation purposes.  The manatees on hand change as they are brought back to health and placed back in Florida to be returned to the wild.

There was one major disappointment this visit.  The otter exhibit was empty!!  This was a huge disappointment to both Sassycas and me, but I suppose this just gives us another excuse to visit again soon.

Next year, we are planning to purchase a season pass for our family.  Such a great way to get some fresh air, visit the animals, and enjoy some quality family time.

~Chica Pants

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One Response to “The Columbus Zoo and Aquarium”

  1. sassycas June 21, 2012 at 3:41 pm #

    Totally agree, the Columbus Zoo and Aquarium is a wonderful place! There is a great variety of animals, the admission fee is very reasonable and there’s lots to see and do. I was very disappointed that the river otters were not on exhibit, but we did get to see the polar bear dive into his pool and the manatees are always cool to see. I did not realize they were there for rehab either, so I really appreciated the info.

    I fully believe that my childhood trips to the zoo and Sea World laid the foundation for the love I have for animals now and I’m so glad we were able to celebrate Chica Pants’ son’s birthday with the animals!

    ~Sassycas

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