One of the most popular family attractions in Washington, DC, the Smithsonian National Zoological Park is home to more than 2,000 animals housed in natural settings throughout the 163-acre park. Spend the day wandering the zoo, enjoy daily programs and ride the carousel. If you're short on time, the National Zoo offers a guided Highlights Tour that visits some of the park's most popular residents, including elephants, tortoises, lions, and bears. From huge gorillas and scary crocodiles to majestic bald eagles and rare giant pandas, the National Zoo is a must-see for families in DC.
Open daily, from 9am-6pm (April-September); 9am-4pm (October-March).
Boo at the Zoo
Can I bring my pet to the zoo?
Pets can be disturbing to many of the animals housed in the National Zoo. With the exception of registered service animals, no pets of any kind are permitted in the zoo. Please note that there is no kennel boarding available at the zoo, and due to the risk of lethal temperatures, pets must not be left in parked vehicles. Visitors should plan to leave their pets at home.
Is photography allowed at the zoo?
Yes, the zoo encourages all visitors to take photographs for their personal use, including sharing on personal social media sites. Professional photography must be cleared in advance with zoo staff. Unless otherwise posted, tripods and flash photography are allowed in the zoo. The use of selfie sticks and extension poles is not permitted anywhere in the zoo.