I love Zoos & always have. The Toronto Zoo is no exception. It has something for everyone: children, parents, grandparents & adults on their own.
First of all, it's just outside the city in a very picturesque part countryside; so the terrain & landscaping are very beautiful & natural. It's also very well organized; from the parking to the zoo itself. I've never found it too crowded....the parking lot maybe; but not the grounds.....there's just soo much room....hence you will need a pair of really good walking shoes.
The zoo is divided into 5 or 6 areas; almost by the continents, but not quite. Don't expect to see the whole zoo in one day.....If you have young children or your walking isn't that great.....I would pick 1 or 2 areas, at the most.
Both my children & I always loved the African area the most. Here there is a huge indoor pavillion for the crocodiles, fish, birds, apes, toitoses, exotic foliage, ect. Keeping this in mind the pavillion is very warm & humid & a place you might not enjoy on a hot summer day. But in the cooler months the indoor "weather" can be very welcoming. You'll probably spend a lot of time in the pavillion itself; as there is so much to see.....especially the apes.
Outside there are the larger gorillas, elephants, etc. in their own areas. You can check on the feeding times of the animals when you first arrive; because all the animals come out & are more active rather than lying in the shade on a warm day.
Along the pathway that meanders through all areas, there are lots of places to rest; but not always in the shade. So come prepared with a small sun hat or cap, sunglasses, spf sun lotion, bottled water & a camera. Even when I'm just going with a friend & not my kids, I wear lightweight clothes in layers & use a small backpack for the water, snacks & even lunch. Along the pathways there are vendors selling ice cream & water from carts......in case you didn't bring anything with you.
My other favorite sites: the polar bears in their swimming pool where you can walk through an "underground" tunnel to see them swimming under the water.; the beavers inside their dam; the koala bears, the baboons.
I like to go in the fall when the leaves have started changing colour & it's a little cooler. There are many beautiful pathways that lead through wooded areas & across wooden bridges & streams.
When you start getting tired you can hop on a trolley & tour other areas you were too tired to do on foot. There are picnic aeas & food places; plus the last time I was there, I noticed a large wading pool area for toddlers & their parents.
One concern was not enough washrooms; so if you see one use it & don't wait until you really need one.
Dress wisely & start early; the zoo closes at dusk.
Save time for the Gift Shop...it's fun for everyone.
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.