Admission is free!
Share this page:

Visit the Zoo!

Visit the Zoo!

Always free of charge and open 364 days a year, the Smithsonian’s National Zoo is part of the Smithsonian Institution, the world’s largest museum and research complex. Founded in 1889, the Zoo sits on 163 acres in the heart of Washington, D.C.’s Rock Creek Park and is home to more than 1,500 animals across 300 different species.

Please be aware that certain attractions , including the Speedwell Conservation Carousel, along with animal demonstrations and outdoor animal viewing, are weather dependent. 

  • The cheetah viewing area at the Cheetah Conservation Station is temporarily closed for renovation.
  • As of Jan. 2, 2017, the Bird House will close in preparation for the new exhibit, Experience Migration. The plateau and outdoor exhibits will remain open until mid- to late-spring. Learn more about the Zoo's state-of-the-art exhibition highlighting the migration of birds in the Western Hemisphere.
  • Kids' Farm will remain open during lower Zoo construction, but please be advised that pathways may change and the route through Kids' Farm may require a longer walk than in the past.
Spring Break Advisory: Please note that due to increased visitation during spring break, April 7 to 23, security screening measures will be implemented at all Zoo entry points. Screening prior to entry includes but is not limited to all bags, backpacks, personal items and strollers. Visitors who exit the Zoo must participate in security screening before re-entry is permitted. Zoo entry wait times are possible during the spring break period. Thank you in advance for your patience, cooperation and assistance in keeping everyone safe.

Today's Hours

Grounds: 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. Last admittance 6 p.m.
Exhibit Buildings: 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Amazonia opens 10 a.m.
Visitor Center: 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Dining & Shopping: 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Today's Events

Click Here to See Full Schedule

Zoo Map

zoo map

Looking for a panda, a cheetah, or perhaps a piranha? The Zoo map can help guide your Zoo adventure.

Parking & Directions

dama gazelle

The Smithsonian's National Zoo is located in the heart of northwest Washington, D.C. and spans 163 acres. There are several entrances to the Zoo and all are pedestrian and vehicle-friendly.

FAQs & Tips for Visiting the Zoo

zoo entrance

On this page you'll find answers to the most commonly asked questions about visiting the Zoo.