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Smithsonian’S National Zoo And Conservation Biology Institute
Smithsonian’S National Zoo And Conservation Biology Institute

Smithsonian’S National Zoo And Conservation Biology Institute Reviews Summary

Rated 4.6 Star based on 39603 Reviews

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Published on
February 15, 2024
Last updated
March 13, 2024

What do customers think about Smithsonian’S National Zoo And Conservation Biology Institute?

The Smithsonian National Zoological Park boasts a generally positive reputation, reinforced by numerous customer reviews praising the value for money, particularly with events such as the National Zoo Lights, which guests find magical and worthwhile, especially when considering the conservation efforts it supports. Furthermore, the free admission to the zoo itself is frequently lauded, marking it as an accessible attraction, though the cost of parking at $30 is often highlighted as a steep. The overall experience reported by visitors is enriched by the active presence of the animals and the engagement of staff members, who are noted for their diligent work in caring for the exhibits. However, mixed feedback regarding the ease of navigation within the zoo, the physical demands due to the terrain, and the availability of amenities like food options and restrooms indicate room for improvement. Recurring praise for special events, effective conservation work, and the free admission policy compound the zoo’s positive image, making it a recommended destination for family and wildlife enthusiasts.

Positive Feedback

Customers express significant appreciation for the Smithsonian National Zoological Park's special events, such as the National Zoo Lights, with its captivating animal lantern displays and festive atmosphere. The low entry cost for these events, particularly when compared to other locations, coupled with their support for animal conservation, is a consistent positive aspect in customer reviews. The general admission to the zoo being free is repeatedly cited as a major highlight, offering great value and making it an attractive option for family outings. Moreover, guests find the animal exhibits engaging and well-maintained, often emphasizing the active and visible wildlife. The dedication of zoo staff in maintaining the grounds and educating the public further contributes to a satisfying visitor experience. Accessibility is also noted as a strong point, with guests appreciating the ability to reserve tickets online and the proximity of public transportation.

Concerns and Threads

While the Smithsonian National Zoological Park is commended for its attractions, several areas of criticism emerge in customer feedback. The $30 parking fee is frequently mentioned as a downside, especially when considered in contrast to the free entry, compelling visitors to seek alternative parking options. Navigation within the zoo presents challenges for some guests, with the maps being difficult to follow and the hilly terrain imposing physical demands, particularly on those with strollers. Limited food options and the need for more frequent restroom maintenance are noted as areas that could detract from the overall experience. Although the zoo provides a gratifying visit, the inability to see indoor animals during special evening events and the requirement to book advance online reservations may create minor inconveniences for some visitors.

Frequently asked questions about Smithsonian’S National Zoo And Conservation Biology Institute

Is admission to the Smithsonian National Zoological Park free?

Yes, admission to the zoo is free; however, visitors must reserve tickets online in advance.

What are the parking options and associated costs at the zoo?

Parking is available on zoo grounds for a fee of $30. Alternative street parking is available but may have restrictions and require fee payment every two hours.

Are food and beverages available for purchase within the zoo premises?

There are limited food options and spots for drinks within the zoo, with some reviews highlighting the availability of food trucks, including ones with special dietary options like gluten-free choices.

What are customers saying about Smithsonian’S National Zoo And Conservation Biology Institute

Smithsonian’S National Zoo And Conservation Biology Institute
D Green
a month ago
I was only in Washington for 2 days and tried to cram so much things in. I wasn’t able to go to the zoo since they close earlier now for the winter months but I was able to attend the light show. You have to buy tickets in advance, which are $6. Not too bad. There’s light festivals in NY that are $30 so I think the price was good. It was nice walking around the zoo at night with all the colorful lights on display. It felt somewhat magical. My kids and I enjoyed ourselves and we’ll definitely be back to check out the zoo.
Smithsonian’S National Zoo And Conservation Biology Institute
Clara S
a month ago
National Zoo Lights is a special event during the Christmas Holiday season. The cost is $6 per person & $30 for one vehicle to park in one of the Zoo’s parking lots. We arrived on a Friday evening around 5:30pm (it opened from 5-9, last entry is at 8:30pm). Plenty of staff to guide you where to park and they scan your parking pass and entry tickets because once you park- you’re “in” the Zoo - so have your tickets ready! Its been awhile since we came to Zoolights but its different than it used to be. Now they have animals lanterns that are lit up, instead of just strands of Christmas lights in the outline of an animal. These were super cool! Lots of places to stop and take a picture - make sure to practice taking pictures of yourself in front of very bright lights because you’ll be super dark while the lanterns are very bright :) Wasn’t super crowded at first but definitely got busier as the night progressed. Lots of places to grab a bite to eat or popcorn to grab and roam around. You won’t really see any animals at night and they close the indoor animal houses to let the animals rest- this is a major difference from years ago as they left those open previously. So if you think you’ll see animals when you- you may not. Even the animals that are usually outside may go inside to sleep as it’s warmer. Our family enjoyed walking in the Zoo at night and seeing the decorations so I would say its worth it and the money goes to animal conservation - so a win win!!
Smithsonian’S National Zoo And Conservation Biology Institute
Jasmine Roman
2 months ago
First time visitor and it was a beautiful day for a nice walk through the Zoo. The zoo was not crowded. A lot of the animals were out and active. Great place for the family and it is Free. Do not pay for parking $30. Park on the streets $9 for two hours. But you do have to repay every 2 hours. Overall I loved my experience and definitely will be coming back!
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About Smithsonian’S National Zoo And Conservation Biology Institute

Activities & Tours

Famous zoo housing thousands of animals, including giant pandas, plus free admission.