** Please Note **
You will not be able to see any Polar Bears at TZ for a while. Currently under construction is a brand new Tundra Exhibit, and when it is finished it should be amazing. Featuring the Artic Fox, Caribou and of course everyone’s favourite...Polar Bears!
Currently The Toronto Zoo is featuring two baby Siberian Tigers, two baby Orangutans and make sure to say hi to my Gorilla boyfriend Sadiki, who is about three and a half.
Check out this article I wrote about visiting the zoo.
Visit The Zoo
I have been a volunteer tour guide (school groups only) since 2004, so if you have any questions... if I don't know the answer, I can find someone who does!
Better to drive, but you can take public transit.
Take the Bloor/Danforth subway east to the last stop of Kennedy.
Go upstairs to the Bus' and take the 86A. Make sure to get on the 86 "A", it will take you right to the entrance, just bring a book. It will be a long transit ride.
Experience a unique wildlife at the Toronto Zoo, one of the largest zoos in the world having an approximately 5,000 animals being housed and taken cared of. This will definitely be a wonderful experience for your kids. It is huge at 287 hectares and over 10 kilometers of walking trails.
Come and visit the Zoo. This is a 'must see' place in Toronto, a one event you should never miss. Please note that it is accessible by car and public TTC Bus Transit. For a complete and detailed information on what is happening and what we are offering that will inspire you, please refer to the website I have provided below.
One of the things I enjoy at the Toronto Zoo is the room the animals have, and the fact that they are not just in little concrete enclosures. You have to look carefully here to see that there is a railing and a large trench that separate the people from the giraffe area. It might not be the Serengetti Plain, but it sure isn't downtown Toronto either!
The Metro Toronto Zoo is a relatively modern zoo with a whole lot of real estate and lots to see and do. In fact, it's so big that it's difficult to keep small children going long enough to see all of it. I went with friends who have made several attempts to see the whole zoo, but have still been unable to get through it all.
Ticket prices are reasonable, but once you're in, you can expect to pay for several additional rides and attractions (even though there aren't many). Considering you could easily spend an entire day here, I found I got good value for my entertainment dollar.
We spent the better part of the day just doing the African section of the zoo. There is a good variety of animals, most of which seem relatively content. I felt a little sorry for the gorillas, who seemed visibly upset by the people looking at them.
Because there is so much walking involved with this zoo you will need to rent one of the strollers or wagons available inside the front gate. It's well worth it, and the kids will be able to keep going much longer with it.
About the Zoo
The Zoo has over 5,000 animals representing over 460 species.
Approximately 1.2 million visitors per year.
There are over 10 km (6 miles) of walking trails.
287 hectares (710 acres). One of the largest zoos in the world.
Exhibits and Layout:
The Zoo is divided into six zoogeographic regions: Indo-Malaya, Africa, the Americas, Australasia, Eurasia and the Canadian Domain. Animals are displayed indoors in tropical pavilions and outdoors in naturalistic environments, with viewing at many levels.
Gorilla Rainforest (Africa Pavilion), Baby Komodo Dragons, first born in Canada (Australasia Pavilion), Sumatran Tiger Cubs, first born in Canada (Indo-Malaya Pavilion), African Savanna, Zellers Discovery Zone featuring Kids Zoo, Splash Island and Waterside Theatre.
The Toronto Zoo (which is actually in Scarborough) is a nice zoo to visit. It's a bit like Canada itself : huge! And you notice that clearly when walking around. They don't have to fight for every inch of space here, so everything is quite far apart with a park-like landscape in between.
The zoo contains of two type of exhibitions, the pavilions and the outside terrains. The outside terrains are very nice, huge spaces for the animals to walk around. Hmmm.... maybe not everywhere though, but on the whole it was okay.
But the inside pavilions made me so sad. This seemed like the older part of the zoo and the cages were so small and it all looked so dark. It looks like they have been renovated but that felt more for the visitor than for the animals themselves. I couldn't bear seeing some of the animals locked up in their little cages. So after visitng a few of these pavilions I decided not to go in them anymore. I think it was a good choice. I always have mixed feeling when visiting the zoo, hahaha, sorry about that! I love seeing the animals but I feel so sorry for them as they are locked up.
I am used to a very nice zoo in The Netherlands where the animals seem to have lots of space and it's a bit like they are in their natural environment. The outside part of the Toronto zoo has the same feel and I enjoyed walking around here a lot. Make sure to put on some good comfy shoes as you have to walk lots!
My favorite parts of the zoo were the grizzly bears and the Japanese Macaque. They were so playfull on this lovely spring day! The two grizzly's were toying with each other and seemed to have a lot of fun. And so did the Japanese Macaque, laying in the sun relaxing and caring for each other or playfully running around on the hill :-)))
Going to the zoo is not cheap though. It cost $18.00 to get in. Seniors (ages 65+) $12.00, Children (ages 4 - 12) $10.00 and ages 3 & younger can go in for free.
There is an additional charge of $8 for parking the car. If you are interested in reading more about this zoo and seeing more of the photos I took that day, you can have a look at my Scarborough page.
The Metro Toronto Zoo is one of the largest zoos in the world, with over 710 acres of walking trails, and animal habitats. I remember coming here often as a child and enjoying the camal rides (which they still have) face painting, pony rides, etc. The zoo also has a collection of about 5000 species - African, South American reptiles, birds, aquatic creatures, elephants, etc. Admission is $19 for adults. The zoo is open every day of the year except for December 25th!
The zoo which opened in 1974 has made many upgrades since then and they have several exciting exhibits. My favorite are when they have baby animals, becuase they are so cute! Make sure to bring weather appropriate clothes and gear, as the parking lot is enormous and the Zoo itself is even bigger, so you don't want to be making trips back to the car for your coat/hat/rain jacket. Also wear comfortable shoes as there is a lot of walking involved!
If you come to Toronto with children(and even if you don't) go to the Metro Toronto Zoo. It is without doubt one of the best zoos in the world. The Metro zoo is particularly large and it will take at least half a day to visit all of the exhibits. The animals are all grouped as according to the continents (or sub-continent) they come from. The African zone is particularly well displayed with wide and open pens where the animials can roam freely. I am also particularily fond of the zone dedicated to North American animals. This is located deep within the Rouge Valley and is also quite spacious. Some might find the walk up and down a little exhausting (in which case you should see your family doctor because you are out of shape) I do have some complaints about the zoo, mostly relating to a general tiredness feel that has sunk in over the years and for the declining state of maintenance. Still it is an excellent zoo. It is also lovely park especially in the autumn when the leaves turn colour.
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