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“Great Day at the Zoo”

Jacksonville Zoo & Gardens
Ranked #4 of 180 things to do in Jacksonville
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Owner description: This 73-acre park is the only zoo in Florida's northeast.
Reviewed April 9, 2013

We enjoyed our day at Jacksonville zoo.

We purchased the value ticket which included the train, dino trek, carousel, butterfly enclosure and stingray bay. The train ride was relaxing and the dino trek good fun but the butterfly enclosure disappointing, we only saw half a dozen or so butterflies, apparently it was too early in the year for them.

The zoo itself was set out nicely and there was not too much walking between exhibits. The layout was a bit confusing though as we missed the penguin enclosure. There was a good variety of animals at the zoo and most of them seemed very active.

We had lunch in one of the restaurants, the service was quick and the food fine.

A nice relaxing way to spend the day

Thank KentS76
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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"train ride"
in 189 reviews
"tiger exhibit"
in 133 reviews
"stingray bay"
in 63 reviews
"animal exhibits"
in 45 reviews
"merry go round"
in 29 reviews
"wide variety of animals"
in 38 reviews
"butterfly garden"
in 30 reviews
"all ages"
in 96 reviews
"well taken care"
in 51 reviews
"special events"
in 31 reviews
"whole family"
in 39 reviews
"big cats"
in 30 reviews
in 390 reviews
in 129 reviews
in 28 reviews
in 54 reviews
in 72 reviews

2,292 - 2,296 of 2,771 reviews

Reviewed April 7, 2013 via mobile

Great set up, well maintained, through in covering a wide variety of wildlife. Wet park, train, dinosaur adventure. Butterfly exhibit not worth the money...

1  Thank Millieprice05
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 6, 2013

I can' believe I live only a few hours away, and I have never visited this zoo before! I visited on what had to be a very high capacity day and despite the crowd, it was a great visit. The animal displays are wonderful, and it was obvious that a lot of care and attention to detail goes into the operation of this zoo.

There were two negatives. First, we arrived about 30 mins after the zoo opened, and the lines to buy tickets were quite long. We probably stood in line 20 mins just to buy our tickets. Like I said, this was a high capacity crowd, so I can't fault the zoo too much for that. I'd just suggest that you buy tickets ahead of time if you can. Go ahead and by the all inclusive ticket so you don't feel nickled and dimed to death all day long for the little things that cost extra: the train, the carousel, the sting ray touch tank, the butterfly garden and the dinosaur exhibit.

The other negative is that we stood in line for 45 mins to buy lunch. It was a very long line and moved slowly. This probably wouldn't be a problem on a less crowded day. But we would have been better off to pack a lunch and eat in the picnic area at the zoo, and just purchased sno cones and snacks inside the park.

There are lots of reptile displays at this zoo. If you have a snake, lizard or frog fan in your group, they will be very happy. The various monkey exhibits are great--we could have stood and watched the monkeys all day long. I was also surprised at how much fun the sting ray touch tank was, it ended up being one of my favorite attractions of the whole visit. There is a fantastic children's play area. The kids would have been happy to spend a whole hour there, but we had to move along in order to see everything. We got in the zoo at 11:30 and left at closing time, 5:00, and there were still some things we missed. If we had planned our time a little better, we could probably have seen everything, but as it was, this visit left me eager to return a second time, which I hope to do soon.

1  Thank southgeorgiagal
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 4, 2013 via mobile

I spent the day there and although not a whole lot there, it was nice. All the exhibits were nice and the dinosaurs were neat. The butterfly garden was a joke though. Maybe it was the time of year but we might of seen 10 butterflies. It was a great day trip and my daughter loved so it was worth it.

Thank rebus20
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed April 4, 2013

I just came back from Jacksonville, and had to comment on my experience at the Jacksonville Zoo. I arrived about 10 mins. before they opened. When it came time to be opened, the cashier strolled in her booth, and started setting up.. If the sign shows opening at 9:00am, shouldn't they be in their booths ready to start? I stood at her window waiting for her, and she told me "I'm not even set up yet". By this time, it was after the "open" time. Poor customer service.
Like another viewer said, the layout is confusing .Some areas the animals were in were overgrown with vegetation and needed to have some stimulation for the animals. Ropes, balls etc. There were a couple of lions and an anteater that kept pacing back and forth. It is a small zoo, and I enjoyed seeing the animals, but would not return.

1  Thank Doxie57
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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