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Henry Vilas Zoo

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Address: 702 S Randall Ave, Madison, WI 53715-1665
Phone Number:
+1 608-266-4732
Today
9:30 am - 5:00 pm
Closed now
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Hours:
Sun - Sat 9:30 am - 5:00 pm
Description:

Truly a wild place to hang out, this free zoo, located inside Vilas Park,...

Truly a wild place to hang out, this free zoo, located inside Vilas Park, features animals from around the world including African lions, South American alpacas and tortoises from the Galapagos Islands.

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TripAdvisor Reviewer Highlights

Read all 1,185 reviews
Visitor rating
  • 699
    Excellent
  • 359
    Very good
  • 84
    Average
  • 19
    Poor
  • 5
    Terrible
a free Zoo? Who wouldn't love that these days!

Wonderful small, easily walkable zoo. My parents from TX always wanted to bring the grandkids when they were here for a visit. And they keep getting better and better with more... read more

5 of 5 bubblesReviewed 3 days ago
LASS2000
,
United States
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1,185 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

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Showing 1,166: English reviews
United States
Level Contributor
39 reviews
14 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 3 days ago NEW

Wonderful small, easily walkable zoo. My parents from TX always wanted to bring the grandkids when they were here for a visit. And they keep getting better and better with more modern exhibits and animal sanctuaries. Worth the 45 minute drive each and every time!

Helpful?
Thank LASS2000
Level Contributor
7 reviews
3 attraction reviews
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 6 days ago NEW via mobile

It was a great family activity, which was free! We needed to get the kids out of the house and moving. Even in the winter, there are a lot of things to see!

Helpful?
Thank Cortney E
Pekin, Illinois
Level Contributor
12 reviews
5 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 1 week ago NEW

We went on a cold day but still enjoyed the indoor areas. This is a great free zoo. I think this is a real gem and worth a stop.

Helpful?
Thank sam61554
Nekoosa, Wisconsin
Level Contributor
12 reviews
9 attraction reviews
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 1 week ago

This is one of the best zoos I have been at. This is a free zoo and it is comparable to the Milwaukee zoo. It is not as huge but it is just as amazing! There is a wonderful selection of of animals.

Helpful?
Thank schoolgirls2
Madison, Wisconsin
Level Contributor
14 reviews
6 attraction reviews
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 1 week ago via mobile

Great place for family and kids. The Trolley ride is great for kids. The lion and tiger exhibit is great as is the Polar Bear exhibit. The food is quite over-priced though and why I only gave it 4 stars.

Helpful?
Thank IndigoIce8
Madison
Level Contributor
27 reviews
7 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 1 week ago

You've never seen anything like it and probably won't again until next year, however, they would be very smart to decorate for VALENTINES DAY, EASTER, SPRING, JULY 4TH !!! It was so much fun and beautiful ! The children loved it and the adults ! Start counting down the days now !

Helpful?
Thank MaryofMadison
Madison, Wisconsin
Level Contributor
34 reviews
16 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 1 week ago

This is a great free little zoo. They have been updating a lot. There is a new Bear exhibit and a large children's zoo and playground.. The zoo is free to enter. There is a charge for the carousel and childrens train. You can get through the zoo in about 2 hours. Parking can be a bit of a challenge... More 

Helpful?
Thank Jenni L
Madison, Wisconsin
Level Contributor
24 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 25 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 1 week ago via mobile

Henry Vilas Zoo is always a delightful place to visit. With easy and plentiful parking, stop in for an hour or bring a picnic and stay all day!

Helpful?
Thank Sturgeon145
Sun Prairie, Wisconsin
Level Contributor
13 reviews
9 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 1 week ago via mobile

The zoo is a great place to take children to learn about animals they don't see in everyday life. It is also a relaxing walk for parents. One of the icons of Madison, WI. There is also a beach nearby for a fun swim in the lake or getting your tan on.

Helpful?
Thank Daphnie P
Illinois
Level Contributor
63 reviews
24 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 26 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 2 weeks ago via mobile

We visited on Mother's Day and it was very crowded. The inside of the zoo was enjoyable and didn't feel too crowded, especially over by the tiger. Parking is another story. We drove through the lot a few times, but anything that opened up got snatched right away. We ended up in a neighborhood uphill several blocks away. We don't... More 

Helpful?
Thank FloofinSchnoof

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Questions & Answers

Here's what previous visitors have asked, with answers from representatives of Henry Vilas Zoo and other visitors
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NYC
over a year ago
6 months ago
Madison, Wisconsin
10 months ago

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Questions? Get answers from Henry Vilas Zoo staff and past visitors.
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Typical questions asked:
  • Will you pick up and drop off at my hotel?
  • I have a family of 7. Can your tour accommodate all of us together?
  • How should I dress for this tour?