Good for: Everyone
Price Range: $15/adult, $9/child, $12/senior (discounted rate for San Francisco residents)
Features: Mini train, talking storybooks using zoo key
San Francisco Zoo is a surprisingly nice zoo. It’s clean, set up well, and has a great selection of wildlife. Make sure you purchase a zoo key (it’s only $3 and can be used every visit) to make use of the storybooks and, in addition to being a nice souvenir, the kids love it! You can also take a ride on the Little Puffer Steam Train but, at the time of writing this review, the official web site says it’s closed for annual maintenance.
Lion, tigers, and bears…and bugs. Many forms of beasts can be found here so be prepared for the hibbie-jibbies as you enter the invertebrates exhibit. Yes, those are cockroaches – eiuw!
At the Playfield Cafe there are various types of food. We had the teriyaki and orange chicken meals and they were actually pretty good. We actually had more but, when they warn you about the seagulls ‘attaching your food’, they’re not kidding. All three of us were sitting at the table and turned our heads for one second. We turned back around only to find a seagull had swooped into our chicken bowl. The Cafe was pretty nice about it and gave us a new dish as we hadn’t even taken a bite yet, thought they can’t be expected to do this every time. So, while the food is tasty here, beware of the sea gulls. Period.
I know know why there was THICK plexiglass near the lion exhibit. At one point the lion decided to stand upright and start scratching against it – that was scary!
There are so many animals and exhibits that I am not able to list them all here. It was great to see how they all look pretty content in their habitats. Even the polar bear was mellow and even plopped down for a nap. The peacock was actually roaming free so we all have fun chasing it down to get some great photos!
Every zoo needs a place the kids can actually touch and pet some animals as well, right? For just a few cents you can even get some feed to give the sheep and goats. Watch out for those sheep though, once you start feeding them, they won’t want you to stop. Run, don’t walk!
This is a fantastic zoo and is well worth a visit. San Francisco residents get extra discounts and free days so you have no excuse to not visit if you live in the city. If coming from outside the area, save some time later to check out the beautiful shoreline on the other side of the zoo. All-in-all, spending the day at San Francisco zoo is a great way to enjoy a family outing!