Plan your visit with interactive maps, animal information, demo schedules, and more!
Part of the Smithsonian Institution, the National Zoo is the nation's zoo. It is a 163-acre zoological park set amid Rock Creek National Park in the heart of Washington, D.C.
You can visit the Zoo 364 days a year to see 2,000 individual animals of 400 different species. Summer and Winter Hours.
Whether by car, bicycle, bus, or metro find out how to get to the Zoo.
Print or view an interactive Zoo Map.
Tourist information and activity sheets help you plan your visit.
Giant panda cub Bao Bao is now on exhibit! Bao Bao is now spending much of her time in the trees of her outdoor exhibit where she can sometimes be difficult to see. Sharp eyes will spot her.
Visitors will be allowed into the panda house on a first-come-first-served basis.
Due to the expected number of visitors to see Bao Bao, Asia Trail will be open to one-way traffic only. Visitors will enter Asia Trail at the sloth bear exhibit, near the Connecticut Avenue pedestrian entrance. Those visiting Bao Bao will be asked to line up outside the giant panda house in front of the panda yards. For the safety of our guests, animals, and staff, visitors will be allowed into the panda house in small groups to avoid overcrowding.
Visitors will enter the panda house from the west entrance, by the red panda exhibit, and exit the east entrance. After leaving the panda house, visitors will exit Asia Trail near Panda Plaza.
Although the panda house will be open from 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Mei Xiang and Bao Bao may not always be visible during that time. They will have access to the den where Bao Bao has spent much of the past few months and may choose to spend time in there instead of on exhibit. Due to bear behavior, we can't guarantee that all visitors will see Bao Bao. She is still young and sleeps a lot.
In celebration of the Smithsonian National Zoological Park’s 125th Anniversary, we are proud to bring back the American bison—the animal that inspired the founding of our Zoo and helped spark the conservation movement. The Smithsonian’s National Zoo started in 1887 as an exhibit on the National Mall behind the Castle featuring American bison and a handful of species native to North America. Two years later on March 2, 1889, Congress passed an act establishing the National Zoological Park in Washington, D.C. dedicated to “the advancement of science and the instruction and recreation of the people.” Bison play a unique role not only in the Zoo’s history but are an iconic American animal with deep significance to our nation’s history.
Something is always happening at the National Zoo. Daily programs include animal training, feeding demonstrations, and keeper talks.
Discover the must eat locations at the National Zoo.
If you're looking for a great hotel in the D.C. area and want to support giant panda conservation, consider booking a panda package.
The National Zoo is a wonderful place to explore, learn, and relax. Our few rules help ensure an enjoyable and safe experience for all visitors.
We make every effort to accommodate visitors with physical disabilities.
With unique ways to amaze, inform, and entertain your guests, creating a memorable event is easy at the Zoo.
Strollers, wheelchairs, and electronic vehicles are available to rent; ask at any information kiosk throughout the park for location. (FONZ members at the Household level and above receive a discount on stroller rentals.)
ATMs are located at the Visitor Center and Mane Restaurant.
Souvenir Zoo maps are available at the Visitor Center and information kiosks throughout the park for $3.
Public restrooms are located in Panda Plaza, next to the Zoo Police Station, inside the Visitor Center, at the Elephant Outpost, and inside Amazonia.
There are no lockers or other storage facilities for visitors at the National Zoo.
The Zoo does not have a kennel where visitors may leave pets during their visit. Pets are not permitted in the Zoo (except for assistance animals) and leaving your pet unattended in your vehicle is strongly discouraged.