Reid Park Zoo is one of Tucson’s most beloved and recognized attractions. Boasting 500,000 visitors each year, the Reid Park Zoo is a clean, well-kept, and moderately sized zoo.
Located in mid-town Tucson and bordered by Gene C. Reid Park and two Tucson City Golf courses, the 24-acre zoo was founded in 1965 and is home to hundreds of animals.
In addition to animal exhibits, the zoo also offers a carousel, a miniature train, a giraffe experience, a camel ride, an air-conditioned cafe, and a number of educational programs.
Reid Park Zoo is also the host of many interesting and well-done adult events throughout the calendar year – including ZOOcson, Brew at the Zoo, and Wine Gone Wild.
Where is the Reid Park Zoo located?
In Central Tucson. The address is: 3400 Zoo Court, Tucson.
What are the hours?
The Reid Park Zoo is open seven days a week.
- October – May, 9:00am – 4:00pm
- June – September, 8:00am – 3:00pm
The Zoo is closed on Thanksgiving Day and Christmas Day.
What is the parking situation at Reid Park Zoo?
Parking is free and plentiful.
Why would I visit the Reid Park Zoo?
- To see elephants, bears, lions, zebras, anteaters, otters, rhinos, flamingos, and more
- To feed the giraffes
- To ride the carousel or miniature train
- To attend a birthday party or special event
How much time should I allot for my visit to the Reid Park Zoo?
Two to three hours should suffice.
How much does it cost?
Zoo admission is FREE for members.
For non-members, rates are as follows: $10.50/adults (ages 15-61), $8.50/seniors (ages 62+), $6.50/children (ages 2-14). and free for little ones (ages 0-1).
*Note that there are several attractions that require an additional fee. Carousel rides are $3/person, giraffe encounter is $3/person, and the Reid Park Zoo Express Train is $3/person.
What is the cost of membership? Is it worthwhile?
There are four different membership levels: Individual ($37/year), Senior ($27/year), Family ($80/year), and Gold ($130/year). Membership qualifies you for free admission to the zoo all year long, discounts at the cafe and gift shop, and member pricing for special events. PLUS, you’ll receive free reciprocal or discounted admission to 160 zoos and aquariums around the USA.
For a family of four, you would quickly pay for your membership if you visited the zoo more than two times in one year. Stated another way, family memberships are less than $7 a month for FREE access to Reid Park Zoo year round!
What should I wear?
Sun safety is encouraged while visiting the zoo! Prepare for a perfect day in the sun with a hat, drinking water, sunscreen, and good walking shoes.
What should I bring with me?
Water bottles, sunglasses, and a camera are recommended.
How many bathrooms are available? Are they clean?
Restrooms are located conveniently throughout the property and are well-maintained.
What is the best season for visiting the desert museum?
October thru April are ideal because the temperatures tend to be more moderate than in the summer months. That said, summer visits can also be fun if you visit in the mornings or evenings.
What is the best time of day to visit the zoo?
Animals tend to be most active and visitor attendance tends to be lowest early in the morning and just prior to closing.
* School group visits are popular each morning March through May. This is a great time to visit if you enjoy the excitement and energy of youngsters exploring their Zoo.
Is outside food allowed? Are picnic tables available?
Although outside food is not permitted in the Zoo, there is an air-conditioned cafe that features a variety of menu items. You may also choose to bring your own food and picnic in one of the many areas just outside the Zoo in Reid Park. Bottled water is always permitted (and encouraged!) in the Zoo.
What dining venues are available on-site?
The Zoofari Market Café at Reid Park Zoo, open daily between 9:00am and 4:00pm, welcomes guests with a 2,200-square-foot indoor space with air conditioning and inside seating for 93. Two adjacent outdoor patios can seat an additional 100 people.
In addition to salads ($5.99-$6.99), sandwiches ($6.99-$7.49), hamburgers ($6.29-$8.29), hot dogs ($5.99-$7.29), and pizza ($5.99 personal or $19.99 family), you can also purchase churros ($2.79), cotton candy ($3.99), and dippin’ dots ($4.29-$5.29) to satisfy your sweet tooth.
Snack stands (eegee’s, Dippin’ Dots, etc) are also occasionally open throughout the zoo during peak hours.
What restaurants are located NEAR the Reid Park Zoo?
There are plenty of dining options in the area. Our top picks within a 5-mile radius are:
- In-N-Out Burger, 3711 E. Broadway Blvd. (0.6 miles away) – burgers, fries, milkshakes
- Tucson Tamale Company, 2545 E. Broadway Blvd. (1.0 mile away) – tamales
- Maynards Market, 400 N. Toole Ave. (3.6 miles away) – soups, salads, sandwiches, steak, fish, vegetarian
- Cup Cafe, 311 E. Congress St. (3.6 miles away) – indoor & outdoor seating, breakfast, lunch, dinner
- 47 Scott, 47 N. Scott Ave (3.8 miles away ) – downtown bistro, happy hour and dinner only
- Reilly Craft Pizza & Drink, 101 E. Pennington St. (3.8 miles away) – pizza, pasta, drinks
- La Cocina, 201 N. Court Ave. (4.1 miles away) – tacos, salads, sandwiches, outdoor seating
If it’s hot outside and you’re up for a cold slushee style drink, go to Eeegee’s at 1875 S. Alvernon Way (1.1 miles away).
BABIES & KIDS
Should I bring a stroller?
Yes. The Reid Park Zoo also has strollers available for rent -$6 for a single stroller; $8 for a double stroller.
Is there a designated area for moms to feed their babies?
No. That said, there are a number of shaded benches located throughout the zoo.
Are changing tables available?
Yes – in all of the restrooms.
Is there a kids menu available at the Zoofari Market Cafe?
Yes. There are six Kid’s Meal options ($6.99 each) – Hot Dog, Corn Dog, Chicken Tenders, Mac & Cheese, PB & J, and Grilled Cheese. Kid’s Meals include applesauce, teddy grahams, and whole milk.
Can I have my wedding at the Reid Park Zoo?
Yes. There are several different venues available for rent – event gardens, Jaguar Junction Cafe, Conservation Learning Center Deck, Zebra Gazebo, and more. Generally, private events begin after the Zoo closes and the public guests have had a chance to exit, approximately 4:30 pm. You must use the zoo’s provided caterer.
Is the Reid Park Zoo on social media?
You can also sign up to receive the zoo’s enewsletter.
What else do I need to know before I go to the Reid Park Zoo?
That’s about it. Have a GRRReat time!