Jacksonville Zoo & Gardens

Jacksonville Zoo & Gardens: Hours, Address, Jacksonville Zoo & Gardens Reviews: 4.5/5

Jacksonville Zoo & Gardens
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
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This 73-acre park is the only zoo in Florida's northeast. With over 2000 animals and 1000 plants, Jacksonville Zoo and Gardens is 1 of only 7 zoos in the United States with an animal wellness team who help to provide the very best care for our animals.
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3,240 reviews
Very good

Roy C
Whispering Pines, NC747 contributions
Mar 2022
Okay, this zoo probably deserves a top score, but tickets have to be purchased in advance because of COVID (even today as I type this review, late April 2022). So, we bought our tickets for our last day in Florida. But when we awoke, it was pouring down rain. Tickets are non-refundable. So we went anyhow. We were there only about an hour and a half. The staff was quite friendly and said we could get a rain check, but "another day" is quite distance from the Sandhills of North Carolina.

Because of the rain, most animals were not out. I really wanted to see the enclosures to compare them with our wonderful North Carolina Zoo, but could not, of course. It was obvious the Jacksonville Zoo is quite nice and, even with the rain, we could tell that the gardens were well maintained and beautiful.

We would like to see this zoo on a nice day, but at our age, and with so many other places we still wish to visit, I doubt we will be able to go back.
Written April 26, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Laura B
Sudbury, MA163 contributions
May 2021
A friend recommended that I take our 8 year old to the Jacksonville Zoo, and it exceeded our expectations!
The Africa area was my favorite with large acreage for the rhinos, gazelles and birds to enjoy. We of course wanted to see the tigers so went to the opposite side and it did not disappoint - a tiger was sleeping right on the other side of the plexi-glass, which was amazing to see!
We also enjoyed the African forest with the monkeys on our way back to the entrance. My only suggestion would be to upgrade to get the Total Experience so you can ride the train around the zoo, as it is a huge property. The day we visited was sunny and around 85 degrees so our boy was tired after a couple hours. The bamboo and trees are strategically planted so you can sit and enjoy shady areas all around the zoo.
Loved seeing the amount of space for the animals to enjoy their environment. Will return again on our next trip to Jacksonville!
Written May 13, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Matthew M
Sanford, ME1,065 contributions
Jun 2020 • Family
I went here with my wife and two year old daughter; since she is starting to recognize animals we thought she should see some in real life. Getting there is pretty easy as is the parking. Tickets must be purchased online ($25 for adults, 2 and under free). We went on a Saturday and despite the weekend it wasn’t overcrowded (That could be because of limited ticket sales due to COVID-19 restrictions). There’s a good selection of animals from all over the world, including a Florida animal exhibit with some lovely gators swimming around. There are paved walkway paths (split directions due to COVID-19), that are easy to walk and navigate with a stroller. It was pretty hot and mostly outside with a few inside exhibits with AC (lizards and snakes), so water, sunscreen, and a hat is advisable. There are small snack stands throughout, as well as a cafe and ice cream place so no need to bring snacks. But we all had fun and my daughter learned some new animal names!
Written June 21, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Jordan W
1 contribution
Jul 2021 • Family
We had heard lots of amazing reviews about this zoo and it was a must see from many of our friends. It was definitely over hyped. While the animal attractions were nice, there were several that were slides, only one place on the entire zoo to get something to eat (it was packed and they messed up the order), you could only do the extras if you bought the full experience package (it also had this posted online) all the extras combined weren’t worth the additional $50 we had to pay. The train ride (which was the sole reason we got the full experience package) was less than 20 minutes round trip and you could barely see any of the animals. Additionally, the train conductor kept pointing out different animals and giving us there history even though they weren’t there or were no longer on display. The second half of the train ride can be summed up with “there are lots of animals behind these trees blocking the view that you will not be able to
See”. I have been to numerous smaller zoos that cost way less to get in, but we’re many times more fun. Just my recommendation, but don’t visit here unless you’re just wanting to be able to say you did. Also brings your own drinks and food so you don’t have to wait in a long line at the 1 restaurant they only to be disappointed.
Written July 7, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Gainesville, FL109 contributions
Sep 2020 • Family
After checking the website to confirm the zoo was open we drove 2 hours only to find out tickets are online only and they have sold out for the day. The person at the gate said there should have been a pop up online that says “online tickets only.” I tested it from a different device- when you hit “accept cookies” the pop up goes away so I never had a chance to read it. Headed home for our 4 hour round trip to nowhere! Thanks zoo web designer!
Written September 26, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Massachusetts138 contributions
Oct 2021
The animals and displays were fantastic, a lot of variety. We absolutely loved the feeding giraffe area, as this is an extra charge at my local zoo.
The train and carousel are worth the extra. However the layout of the zoo was very strange and inefficient. It was a bunch of loops that you had to keep walking back past the items you already saw in order to exit the loop and get to the next one. This wasted a lot of time rather than being able to just keep walking forward to more animals. They also didn't hand out maps so we never knew where we were.

The food was also a huge issue. My local zoo has a hot dog cart on every corner so you can always grab food quickly. This zoo seemed to have one major counter "restaurant" with an hour line. We walked a little bit further and found one other small hut offering basically just chicken fingers but at least there was no line at that one. Overall, we liked the animals but not the setup of the zoo.
Written October 18, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Ed H
1 contribution
Mar 2022 • Family
While the zoo is well laid out with many good attractions, ALOT of attractions were empty and or closed entirely. I understand breeding or seasonal for water park for instance, but I'd say 30 percent was empty. Restaurants were closed and bathrooms were filthy.... For one of the worst costs to get into a zoo I have seen in almost 50 years I definitely expected much better. 35 bucks to get in to vacant stalls, no food other than snow cone carts and closed attractions!
Written March 21, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Clarksville, TN116 contributions
Mar 2022 • Couples
The stop was a one time visit to Jacksonville on the way to another destination. The Zoo is only currently doing online tickets only and was notified by security as they were directing traffic. Having been to several zoos in this part of the country we felt the Jacksonville Zoo was very "bird heavy" in the displays. Most people usually prefer a good selection of other animals. I also felt for a gorgeous Sunday their could have been more food carts or snack booths. Zoo employees were friendly and helpful!
Written March 27, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Lake City, FL160 contributions
Apr 2021
We went to the zoo on Good Friday. We had a wonderful time with our three grandchildren. I would recommend if possible to purchase the total experience ticket. It covers unlimited train rides, carousel rides, 4D movie showings, feeding the lorikeets, giraffes, and manta rays. If you don't purchase the total experience you can see all the animals, but can not do any of the things I mentioned. My grand kids took many carousel rides, fed all those animals (the giraffes twice), and watched the movie twice. And it was nice being able to ride the train to the back of the park and then to the entrance again. It is a beautiful zoo with many, many animals. The cafeteria is not bad for zoo food, and the kids meal is a hot dog, hamburger, 2 chicken tenders or maybe one other choice with a small drink, choice of fries, chips, or fruit, and animal crackers for $6.99. That is pretty good for an "event" type place. About 2/3 of the people were wearing masks.
Written April 2, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

lenoir1 contribution
Mar 2021 • Family
This has been the best zoo we have visited. We traveled 2.5 hours to go. My children (4, 4, and 10m) had the most amazing time. The stingrays were their favorite. I love how shaded it was, the train going from one side of the zoo to the other so we didn't have to walk all the way around, the exhibits were big, the ticket prices were a good point and the total experience included so much and saved us a ton of money. The food was even good and a good price. The train could definitely use an update and the bathrooms too. Plus additional cleaning throughout the day but with covid I'm sure they are understaffed. I'm so happy masks weren't required either or we wouldn't have visited. It was a great experience and I can't wait to visit again
Written March 15, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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Frequently Asked Questions about Jacksonville Zoo & Gardens

Jacksonville Zoo & Gardens is open:
  • Sun - Sat 9:00 AM - 5:00 PM