The Calgary Zoo
The Calgary Zoo!!!! If you live in Calgary, I’m sure you’ve been here. If not- you have to go! It is home to almost 800 animals, 130 different species and is organized into 5 distinct zones:
- Destination Africa
- Canadian Wilds
- Dorthy Harvie Botanical Gardens and Enmax conservatory
- Prehistoric Park.
Not only is it a great place to burn energy and be outside, but it is also such a good place to educate your kids! Can’t be all play and no work 😉
My recommendation is to buy a membership. That way if you go and you spend 1hr there the first time, 3hrs the next time and then you barely make it past the front gate, you really don’t care! Plus, it includes parking. My sister in law who lives in Boston MA even buys the membership because its cheaper for her few visits a year!!
Also, sometimes when I need to take the train somewhere I will park at the zoo and hop on there. Lots of free parking and super easy!
Usually at the Calgary Zoo we spend anywhere from 1.5-4 hours there. We always go early in the morning because WE CANNOT MISS NAP TIME (my fav part of the day, especially after a long adventurous morning!) and if you go early enough you can enjoy the zoo a bit before all the school groups come. I also find the animals do a bit more in the morning so it makes it more fun.
The Calgary zoo has almost every animal you can imagine. The only one I can think of that they don’t have is an elephant. But prepare to see penguins, pandas, hippos (Yael’s fav- I have no clue why lol), giraffes, camels, lions, tigers, gorillas, bears etc, etc, etc!!! Pictures of some animals are at the end of the post. But it’s better if you just go see them for yourself 😉
Reasons we love the zoo:
- With the membership you can spend as little or as much time without feeling guilty
- We love learning about the different animals. With small kids you can tackle a different area each visit to make it new and exciting and not repetitive
- The cafe has healthy and not so healthy options that all support wildlife conservation. I have to be honest, the burger and fries are so good.
- A good gift shop
- Multiple interactive play areas and parks for the kids
- A carousel in the summer (additional cost)
- You can host so many events here; Weddings, Christmas parties, etc.
- They always have events like the Panda Birthday, Storytimes, Zoolights, etc.
- Its central location which makes it easy for you to get to no matter where you live
- Although sometimes I feel sad for the animals, through talking with Zoo staff (almost every time I’m there) I have learnt a lot and I really do believe and trust that they take all aspects into consideration before bringing an animal in. They are an accredited zoo and recognized world wide so that makes me feel better about it all.
- For more information visit their website
- 2.5 yr old girl: The Hippos and running around at lunch time
- 1 yr old boy: The lions (he was Rawr-ing for the rest of the time lol)
- Mom & Dad: The Zoo is somewhere that is fun for us too! My fav animal is the baby & mom gorilla. I can’t leave without seeing them! The lions are pretty cool too (if you catch them awake).