We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.
The latest reviews. The lowest prices. The perfect place to shop for hotels.

“Enjoyed” 4 of 5 bubbles
Review of Columbus Zoo

Columbus Zoo
Ranked #1 of 14 things to do in Powell
Certificate of Excellence
More attraction details
Attraction details
Owner description: Home to more than 11,000 animals representing nearly 600 species from around the globe, the Columbus Zoo and Aquarium leads and inspires by connecting people and wildlife. The Zoo complex is a recreational and education destination that includes the 22-acre Zoombezi Bay water park and 18-hole Safari Golf Course. The Columbus Zoo and Aquarium also operates the Wilds, a 10,000-acre conservation center and safari park located in southeastern Ohio. The Zoo is a regional attraction with global impact; annually contributing $4 million of privately raised funds to support conservation projects worldwide. A 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, the Columbus Zoo has earned Charity Navigator’s prestigious 4-star rating.
Michigan
Level Contributor
31 reviews
7 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 31 helpful votes
“Enjoyed”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 29, 2010

We very much enjoyed this zoo, we liked that it was spread out and didn't seem congested and most of the exhibits were large, enjoyed the polar bear/arctic exhibit. Food choices and prices, and admission prices were very reasonable.

Helpful?
Thank TinaKzooMichigan
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Write a Review

1,873 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    1,313
    407
    105
    30
    18
Date | Rating
  • Chinese (Simplified) first
  • English first
  • German first
  • Japanese first
  • Portuguese first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Zanesville, Ohio
Level Contributor
56 reviews
29 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 185 helpful votes
“The Columbus Zoo Has So Much to See and Do For a Family”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 17, 2010

We have been Columbus Zoo members for many many years now. My children are now 11 and 7. We typically visit about 4 times a year. We just recently took my great nephew for his first zoo visit. The polar bear exhibit is brand new and we really liked it. The large glass viewing area is great! The polar bears were active and were swimming in the water in front of us. We went there right at opening so it wouldn't be so crowded and the polar bears were obviously awake! Don't miss the polar bears. It's a lot of walking like any zoo, (especially back to the new polar exhibit) so make sure you bring the large stroller! The new play area is OK for little ones by the polar bears, not very big like the older one over by the food court and Australia.

We like to pack a lunch and picnic either in North America (where we did this day) back by the prairie dogs at a nice shaded picnic table area right by a large metal dinosaur skeleton "playground" structure for the kids to climb on. Another great lunch area is off to the back of the merry-go-round by the waterfront. We prefer to eat our own food from home due to not very many healthy options in the food court. Most of that food is just over-priced fast food. You can take coolers in and have them in the bottom of your stroller all day. Just don't bring straws or glass (unless it's baby food.)

Our favorite exhibit is the gorillas. They are so interesting to sit and observe. Don't rush your children along to hurry and see another exhibit, it's best to observe and learn something from each animal. In one day's time you should get to see everything without hurrying the kids.

The aquarium is another favorite of ours. The touching tide pool is great for little ones to touch a starfish. This is another place not to hurry through. Sit and relax and take in the blood-pressure lowering coolness of watching the fish combined with air conditioning. We went one time on a snow day from school in January. We had the zoo to ourselves! We were the only ones in the aquarium for 1/2 hr. and the same for the gorillas! Obviously we needed boots and winter coats to walk around, but the heat in between building kept us warm enough. We loved it that day. No one even checked for our member card at the gate- no one was there... so we would have gotten in free that day if we weren't members!

Definitely buy one of those cards or punch cards if it saves you money on the rides. They keep changing how they do it, but my kids love the boat ride, train ride and merry go round. You can just pay for each ride if you're not doing all of them. My daughter has outgrown the pony rides, but that was always a favorite. That's not included on the punch card.

Make sure you feed the lorikeets over near Australia. We have so many pictures of the birds landing on our heads, shoulders and arms. Sometimes they poop on us, so watch out! My son went through a period of time where he was scared of them, due to the interaction with them. Be careful not to spill the liquid in the cup, or there goes your $1.

The petting zoo is another great place. My kids still love brushing the goats.

The penguins are our favorite when my husband goes with us. He takes his watch and makes the sun reflect and the penguins chase the shiny spot on the rocks that he makes. It's funny and it's another place to stay awhile and observe.

Enjoy the zoo, you can't go wrong with whatever you do. We love it!

Helpful?
1 Thank teachermama1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Fairmont, West Virginia
Level Contributor
68 reviews
32 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 49 helpful votes
“Great Zoo”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 16, 2010

Went here on for a short trip before kids had to start school. Have to say that I was blown away by the size, cleaniness, and amenties of this zoo. The animal exhibits were well done and the animals were so active. The park is large but very pretty and basically flat so you dont get wore out walking the hills of some zoos. Crowds were not a problem. The weather was hot that day but there are several trees and areas inside to get a break from the sun. The food court close to the Africa area was impressive. The food was good and reasonable with a great selection. I havent been to a ton of zoos but this one sets the standard.

Helpful?
Thank steelmoney58
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Washington Court House, Ohio
Level Contributor
55 reviews
49 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 75 helpful votes
“One of the Top 5 zoos in the country”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 13, 2010

With the new addition of the Arctic exhibit in the North American section, the Columbus Zoo solidifies itself as a top 5 zoo in the country in my opinion. The area has a great viewing area underwater for the polar bears to be photographed. The ideal time is around noon when the fish are thrown in the water for feeding.

The zoo is extremely large and divided by continent. The elephants & tigers are exciting to see in Asia but my favorite in this area is the bat exhibit. The aquarium and marineland is highlighted by the manatee. Next to the reptile center are some of the largest and oldest tortoises I have ever seen. Australia is hgihlighted by the kangaroos, lorikeet feeding area, kimodo dragon, and monkeys. Africa's highlight may be its phenomenal gorilla display and the okapis which are so close.

You can get a souvenir cup for $7 with 99 cent refills all day. Food options are somewhat limited however. There is a large playground near Australia which the kids enjoyed but it was beginning to get somewhat crowded. There is a smaller playground in North America.

This is a great zoo and has rides available in Jungle Jim's area with a wristband option ($8 I believe) and the waterpark also for an additional fee of about $20.

Helpful?
Thank OHfamilyguy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Erie, Pennsylvania
1 review
“A very fun time”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 10, 2010

I traveled to the Columbus Zoo with 11 family members ages ranging from 2-40, we had an amazing time, the zoo was huge! and the variety of animals was plenty. We traveled there from Erie, Pennsylvania. We were at the zoo on a tuesday and we were not fighting for a place to see at the animal attractions. The polar Bear exhibit was a little crowed but it is new and unique. there were places to sit because you get very tired with all the walking you do. I would plan out a route to travel before you get started. I reccomend getting the cups that you can get free, unlimited refills on all day, YOU WILL NEED IT. the food is expensive, you are not allowed to bring in outside food and drinks. The zoo is very clean and accessible, but overall we loved it. Wear comfy shoes and take some ibreprophen and everone will do fine

Helpful?
Thank getthetripscoop
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Been to Columbus Zoo? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Owners: What's your side of the story?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing