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4 of 5 bubbles Review of Detroit Zoo

Detroit Zoo
Ranked #1 of 19 things to do in Royal Oak
Certificate of Excellence
More attraction details
Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: More than 3 hours
Owner description: The Detroit Zoo has 125 acres of naturalistic habitats for 2,400 animals from aardvarks to zebras and features award-winning attractions such as the National Amphibian Conservation Center, Great Apes of Harambee and Arctic Ring of Life. The Zoo's newest attraction is the spectacular Polk Penguin Conservation Center, the largest facility for penguins in the world.
Bloomfield Hills, Michigan
Level Contributor
5 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 18, 2014

My Fiance, George and I visit the Detroit Zoo about once a week. We LOVE the Detroit Zoo and, especially, Trio and Buster (the racehorses who were rescued and reside at the Detroit Zoo). The only change I would request is the VERY high prices. (A can of pop or a bottle of water is a whopping $3! WOW).

The staff is extremely friendly and I would definitely recommend purchasing the annual pass (as it would save you tons of $ if you visit the Zoo often as we do).


Visited August 2014
Thank Lynn R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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1,006 reviews from our community

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English first
Detroit, Michigan
Level Contributor
104 reviews
40 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 63 helpful votes
“Nice Zoo”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 16, 2014

This is a good size zoo, all the animal exhibits are pretty spread apart so be prepared to do a lot of walking (definitely recommend strollers for younger kids that you can also be rented onsite for a fee). It's not cheap so if you're a Michigan resident I highly recommend getting the annual membership, it pays for itself after two visits. Available with membership only is a lot of extra/special events, for example around Halloween. A new penguin exhibit is under construction that should be finished by 2015. The animals are a lot more active in the morning and are usually napping in the afternoon.

Visited August 2014
Thank Mouzouris
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Westland, Michigan
Level Contributor
14 reviews
9 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“It's just ok”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 13, 2014

The Detroit zoo is a pretty big zoo, but the attractions are kind of far apart. There is a lot of walking so if you have young kids or older people who can't walk well then make sure you bring strollers or wheelchairs. There are a few exhibits that are pretty cool though. The butterfly house is beautiful. The walk through kangaroo exhibit is neat. The polar bears/ seals is cool with the tunnel but don't expect to see polar bears swimming over the tunnel to often. I've been to this zoo like 6 or 7 times since they opened that exhibit and only seen polar bears swimming once. But the seals do swim around and that's fun to watch. The train is not that great. All you do is go one way, either back of the zoo to front of the zoo or front to back and there is nothing much to look at besides walls and parking lots. They do have a new carousel which is nice. Food is expensive though so you might be better off bringing a picnic lunch. So overall I would say it's just an average zoo. Nothing to special about it.

Visited April 2014
Thank Julie L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Houston, Texas
1 review
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“Few animals at the zoo”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 12, 2014 via mobile

I work in the tourist industry and meet a lot of out of towners who go to the zoo. A lot of them make the same comment that they came away from a visit disappointed at the lack of animals. No elephants, no apes, and when you finally do see an animal- there's one over here and one over there. The landscaping is nice with lots of walking but let's face it, people come to a zoo to see animals. They do like the butterfly house and arctic exhibit, but the lack of animals gives a poor impression compared to other zoos.

Visited August 2014
1 Thank 012913cc
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
84 reviews
19 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
“A Must Stop in Royal Oak - Detroit”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 11, 2014

I had heard good reviews about this zoo so my expectations were pretty well set before arriving. Even so, I was pleasantly surprised at how accurate the reviews were. The three others traveling with me were equally happy and impressed. This zoo is very clean, well thought out, and the array of animals was impressive regardless of the location. Along with the obvious list of obligatory features expected at a zoo, the Detroit Zoo goes beyond. The first positive impression was with the great number of dedicated volunteers eager to assist with insight or suggestions. Another feature that impressed us was the landscaping that rounded out the grounds that brought the place alive in between the wild life. There was a power outage on the day we visited and didn't seem to affect the experience in the least. Take your pick as to which attraction that might draw you the most: polar bears, primates, butterflies, kangaroos, penguins, and so on - you will not be disappointed with the quality or quantity. We did miss the 4D theatre and simulator attractions due to us having other plans, so I cannot speak to those. It was also nice to see the many areas for groups of any size to picnic or gather throughout the grounds. I'd be happy yo take another group anytime the opportunity presents itself.

Visited August 2014
1 Thank TeamTumi
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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