Sunday, July 19, 2009

The San Diego Zoo!

I worried that I wouldn‘t be able to capture the magic of our visit to the San Diego Zoo, but then I realized that wasn’t really important - Each person will take something different home from their visit, whether it is the knowing looks from the Guerillas or the quiet Zen of the Pandas or the sheer size of the Elephants.

I had been to the San Diego Zoo before - I was one of the lucky Mom’s who was able to chaperone my sons’ class on their field trip to the Zoo last year. Picture one mom carrying six children’s lunch and double water bottles for each child the day in our backpack... Yes, that was an interesting day!
I knew that our first stop for the day had to be the double decker bus tour around the park. My husband balked at it, but I assured him this was an absolute must to begin the day because it would give us a great overview of the park and allow the kids to get a lot more sightseeing done in a short amount of time.

Along the thirty-five minute bus tour (included in the price of admission) we were able to see most of the popular exhi
bits with amazing bird’s eye view of many of the animals. The ohh’s, ahh’s and cool’s were nonstop. A couple of our family favorites were the Polar Bear exhibit and the newly opened Elephant Odyssey.

The SkyFari tour was breath taking, but I recommend catching it near the Polar Bear Exhibit as a great way to get back to the main entrance area to avoid long waits.
I must admit though, one of my sentimental favorite surprises of the day was finding the Dr. Suess story statue garden (The Lorax is one of my absolute favorite stories!).

At the end of the day we have been left with more memories than I can write about, but most importantly, I now have a playroom that is being turned in to a small scale San Diego Zoo (using stuffed animals and other various toys as the exhibits) – and that is priceless!

Admission for the day: $122 for a family of four (but we opted to upgrade for full year memberships for the San Diego Zoo and the Wild Animal park for an additional $67, an awesome value if you ask me! So expect a post about the Wild Animal Park in the near future!)

A few tips for a good day:
-Arrive as soon as the park opens. This is because there is a tremendous amount of walking to do and as the sun rises higher in the sky, it can become more difficult for younger children to keep up with walking.

-Coat children in sunscreen at the beginning of the day and again frequently, as it is easy to forget how much you are in the sun and the sunburns are not fun!

-Pack a couple extra water bottles or juices in a back pack. There are ample places to purchase drinks, but this can add up throughout the day. We were shocked at the reasonable rates for snacks and meals but found the prices of sodas and waters at the carts to be a bit high.

-I’m sure I don’t need to say it, but bring comfortable walking shoes and be prepared for a workout!

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JLC July 20, 2009 at 9:03 AM  

Now you need to go to the Wild Animal Park! Don't do it in summer when it is very hot. Wait until late fall. :)

marina villatoro August 18, 2009 at 9:00 PM  

my absolute favorite zoo. but i sooooooo agree with JLC, you have to go the Wild Animal Park. This is just the greatest place, and all zoos have to do this!

Katie August 18, 2009 at 9:16 PM  

We have gone to the Wild Animal Park. :) I have only written one post so far but we went to the Wild Animal Park again last weekend, I just haven't gotten my post finished yet. :) We LOVED it!

Unknown August 12, 2010 at 11:53 AM  

The last time I was at the San Diego Zoo I was 42 weeks pregnant with my oldest daughter (who is now 17). We had made it down into the fault and to the back of the park so that I could yell at the Storks about being late. I was *so* huge and *so* tired from the day so far my mother and husband had to get behind me and push me back up the hill! LoL!

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