Smithsonian National Zoological Park l Friends of the National Zoo




The National Zoo is open every day of the year except December 25. ADMISSION IS FREE!

Location Hours
Visitor Center & Exhibit Buildings 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. (4 p.m. closing in winter*)

Please Note: Amazonia and the Bird House will open at 10 a.m. year-round

Grounds 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. (5 p.m. closing in winter*)
Concessions 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. (4:30 p.m. closing in winter*)
Rock Creek bike path 6 a.m. to 7 p.m.

*Winter hours: October 1-March 14.

The Zoo is a popular destination and parking lots fill quickly, so we encourage you to arrive early in the day, before animal buildings open, or take the Metro to the Zoo during peak attendance times.

Early Closings and Late Openings

On occasion, the National Zoo closes early to host special events. This information is subject to change. Please check back prior to your visit.

Grapes with the Apes – Zoo Hours for September 1, 2016:

1:00 p.m. The Zoo will be closed from Great Apes to Prairie Dogs including the Great Ape House, Reptile Discovery Center, Dip N Dots, Think Tank, Great Cats, the Great Cats Shop, the carousel, and Prairie Dogs.

Animals and Exhibits

Cheetahs, zebras, gazelles, oryx, Przewalski's horses, lions, tigers, birds, and many other animals can be seen outside much of the time, and many more animals are on exhibit throughout the day in our air-conditioned and heated buildings (including the Reptile Discovery Center, Small Mammal House, Bird House, and Amazonia).

The best time to see giant pandas is between the hours of 8 a.m. and 2 p.m.