Visitors: Please note that winter hours began on Oct. 1. Please see the hours page for updated opening and closing times.

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Food & Dining

The Smithsonian's National Zoo offers a wide variety of dining options, including six restaurants and numerous food carts, stands and kiosks located throughout the park. Kid-friendly, vegetarian, dairy-free and gluten-free options are often available. Group meals can be pre-ordered for 10 or more guests. 

Visitors are also welcome to bring their own food and snacks into the Zoo.

As a commitment to conservation, the Zoo serves only Bird Friendly Coffee—the only 100% organic and shade-grown coffee certification available.

PLEASE NOTE: While Mane Grill is open year-round, many of the Zoo's restaurants maintain seasonal hours. Seasonal closings and hours are listed for each restaurant below.



Mane Grill

Angus burgers, chemical- and hormone-free grilled chicken, kids' meals and to-go items.

Location: Lion & Tiger Hill

March-Aug.: 10 a.m.-5 p.m.
Sept.-Feb.: 10 a.m.-4:30 p.m.

Heirloom Grill

Angus burgers, grilled salmon, bratwurst and salads.

Location: Outside Mane Grill, Lion & Tiger Hill

April-Aug.: 10 a.m.-4 p.m.
Sept.-Oct.: Weekends only,
11 a.m.-4 p.m.
Closed: Nov.-March
cheetah and cubs eating a big plate of raw meat

Group Meals

Are you a group visiting the Zoo? 

We have special catering options just for you!

Event space and catering is also available for company picnics and gatherings.

View the menu

open-faced sandwich

Seal Rock Cafe

Hot-pressed panini sandwiches, salads, all-natural hot dogs, Dippin' Dots Ice Cream

Location: American Trail

April-Aug.: 11 a.m.-4 p.m.
Sept.-Oct.: Fridays & weekends,
11 a.m.-3 p.m.
Closed: Nov.-March
caesar salad

Panda Overlook

Hot-pressed panini sandwiches, made-to-order salads, all-natural hot dogs, funnel cakes, espresso drinks

Location: Asia Trail

April-Aug.: 10 a.m.-5 p.m.
Sept.-Oct.: Fridays & weekends,
11 a.m.-4 p.m.
Closed: Nov.-March
hot chicken sandwich

Panda Grill

Pizza, po' boy sandwiches and all-natural chicken tenders.

Location: Across from entrance to Asia Trail

April-Aug.: 10 a.m.-5 p.m.
Sept.-Oct.: Fridays & weekends,
11 a.m.-4 p.m.
Closed: Nov. - Feb.
hot dogs

Hot Dog Diner

All-natural beef hot dogs with assorted gourmet toppings.

Location: Near Reptile Discovery Center

March-Aug.: 11 a.m.-5 p.m
Sept.-Oct.: Fridays & weekends,
11 a.m.-4 p.m.
Closed: Nov.-March
oranges and salads

Snack Stands & Kiosks

Lemonade cart, Dippin' Dots ice cream, kettle corn, fresh market cart and more!

Location: Throughout the Zoo

Late March-Aug.: 11 a.m.-5 p.m.
Sept.-Oct.: Fridays & weekends, various hours
Closed: Nov.- late March