Como Zoo, as well as the Conservatory, has been around for a long time. As in over 100 years. Located in northern St. Paul along Lexington Parkway, just south of Larpenter in Como Park, Como Zoo is fun for the young and young at heart.
Como Zoo is free with a suggested donation of $3/adult, and $2/child. And the thing I like most about the zoo is that it is small. Since it is free, you can do just a few things and come back a different day to do more.
Como Zoo offers many different programming options as well as a simple stroll through the zoo. Classes for 2’s, 3’s, 4/5’s, homeschooling, and families are just some of the different options. During the non-summer months, they have special activities on Thursdays from 10:00-12:00–stories, zoo-keeper talks, hands-on activities.
The boys and I explored the zoo one day when daddy was ice fishing (maybe?) and the girls were at a birthday party. It happened to be Arctic Blast weekend. There were tables and displays set up in the visitor’s center focusing on animals from the arctic.
After looking around the Arctic Blast exhibits, we made our way to the zoo. My goal was to focus mainly on the arctic animals. So we checked out the Polar Bear Odyssey (the newest exhibit for the bears–currently, they are working on the gorilla exhibit).
The boys got to crawl in and out of a snow mound to see what it was like to live like a polar bear.
We also checked out the reindeer, the mountain goat, the penguins and the arctic foxes. I was pretty dead set to see the foxes since they are white during the winter. We even were able to see the timberwolves. I don’t know when I’ve ever seen the timberwolves!
But no zoo visit is complete without seeing the lion (the farthest unit away from the entrance, of course).
Or sitting on the giraffe statues that say, do not climb! Isn’t he proud of himself.
It’s a perfect place to explore with your children whether it is winter or spring!
- It’s open all year!
- It’s small with most of the expected zoo animals: Lions, tigers, giraffes, seals, zebras, gorillas.
- There is a cool exhibit in the Visitor’s center and unless your children force you to go outside, you don’t have to to experience the zoo.
- Lockers are available for your stuff.
- It’s winter in MN, so to enjoy it thoroughly, you will NEED your winter gear.
- The carousel isn’t running (but it is an outdoor thing so you probably wouldn’t want to ride it anyway).
- The distance from the parking lot to the door is quite long, so be prepared for a hike to get into the zoo.