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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.

During a visit to the Smithsonian’s National Zoo, you may be asked to Round Up for Conservation at retail and restaurant locations.  When you choose to Round Up for Conservation, your purchase is rounded up to the nearest dollar. That spare change directly funds animal care and wildlife conservation efforts.
Mane Grill
Angus burgers, chemical- and hormone-free grilled chicken, fried chicken sandwich with lemon aioli, kids' meals and to-go items.
Location: Lion & Tiger Hill
Hours: March-Aug.: 10 a.m.-5 p.m.
Sept.-Feb.: 10 a.m.-4:30 p.m.
Heirloom Grill
Closed during construction
Location: Outside Mane Grill, Lion & Tiger Hill
Hours: Closed
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
Salads, all-natural hot dogs, Dippin' Dots Ice Cream
Location: American Trail
Hours: 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
NEW: Asian-inspired menu items!
Location: Asia Trail
Hours: 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 Panda Trail
Hours: 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
NEW: Foot-long hot dogs! All-natural beef hot dogs with assorted gourmet toppings.
Location: Across from the Small Mammal House
Hours: 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
Hours: Late March-Aug.: 11 a.m.-5 p.m.
Sept.-Oct.: Fridays & weekends, various hours
Closed: Nov.- late March