With a collection of more than 5,000 animals from all over the globe, gorgeous landscape and spacious enclosures and a strict commitment to conserving wildlife for the future, the Toronto Zoo is must-see for animal lovers.
Its partner, the Toronto Zoo Wildlife Conservancy, ensures that the focus of this zoo is preservation of the world’s precious, and at risk, creatures. Of course, visiting the animals is also highly entertaining. Learn about Canadian flora and fauna or take a trip around the globe to see nature’s diverse creatures from land, sea and air.
With live feedings, educational talks and hands-on experiences, kids and adults alike will leave the zoo appreciating the natural world around them even more. Little ones will also enjoy the large kids’ section.
For up-to-date information and details on Toronto Zoo, we recommend you visit their website. For information about other places of interest to explore nearby, keep scrolling to see what Destination Ontario recommends.
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More about Toronto Zoo
Located just 35 km from downtown, the Toronto Zoo is easily accessible by car and public transit. Drive and pay for parking at the zoo’s large lot, or take the 95A bus from York Mills Station, transfer at Ellesmere and Meadowvale roads to the 86A and ride that into the zoo. From the city, drive east along the 401 Express.
CityPass holders can visit the zoo for a discount. Members also receive a generous discount on any extra activities, such as an animal encounter. As a non-profit, the Toronto Zoo’s admission and parking fees contribute directly to the important conservation work of the Toronto Zoo Wildlife Conservancy. You can also support the zoo by adopting an at-risk species, donating to the conservancy or buying a “zoovenir” from the shop.
Cross the picturesque bridge to enter the Toronto Zoo, laid out in order of the animals’ home regions. Sprinkled throughout the park are several delicious eateries, like the Caribou Cafe and the Beavertails Tundra. Follow one of several walking trails, which change and update periodically, to make sure you see as much as possible. The Around the World Trail, for example, takes approximately three hours and spans every region that the zoo has to offer. Make sure to set aside a whole day for your visit to the zoo, since you’ll likely want to stop by the many gift shops and restaurants, or maybe even plan a magical animal encounter with the zoo staff.
While the attraction may seem to be the animals, for real animal-lovers it’s the zoo’s focus on conservation, preservation and education. The zoo offers several talks and demonstrations throughout the day, including the exciting otter feeding where you can watch the otters jump for joy at their fishy snacks. The Kids Zone is especially educational, teaching young ones about their favourite creatures and how to appreciate and protect animals. For those who like a sensory experience, the Discovery Zone offers a hands-on look at the creatures in the zoo. The zoo can also be experienced from the comfort of a Zoomobile, which offers an accessible and relaxing tour around the entire property. Kids won’t find a moment of boredom with a theatre offering entertaining educational performances and the carousel ride to keep them busy.
Since 1974, the Toronto Zoo has welcomed visitors with the specific focus of providing ample space for the animals for the enjoyment of the guests as well as the creatures the zoo aims to protect. The Toronto Zoo Wildlife Conservancy prides itself on successful preservation of endangered species as well as a prolific breeding and reintroduction program for the animals, boasting successful missions like the breeding of a baby Masai giraffe in 2020.
Commemorate your trip to the zoo by purchasing an adorable plush animal from one of the many gift shops around the park, or donate to the wildlife conservancy directly.