Thursday, July 5, 2012

Local Attractions: Como Park Zoo & Conservatory

We're lucky to have two great zoos in the Twin Cities, and the Como Zoo just happens to be free! They welcome donations but only suggest $1 per child and $2 per adult, so at just $5 for our family I still consider it a steal. 

Neither of our zoos has an elephant, but the Como Zoo has a lot of the classic zoo animals that the Minnesota Zoo is missing. You can see zebras...

...giraffes (my personal favorite)...

...and lions. They also have a tiger, ostriches, wolves, bison, reindeer, seals, gorillas, orangutans, lots of different monkeys...

...and a polar bear! They've had a polar bear for as long as I can remember, but they recently opened a new polar bear exhibit which is amazing. I was a little jealous of the polar bear playing in his ice cold pool (we went on a really hot day), but after getting one look at the size of his paws I wasn't about to jump in with him!

The flamingos are a seasonal exhibit but it always makes me feel like we live someplace at least semi-tropical when I see them at the zoo.

We also took a walk over to the Marjorie McNeely Conservatory, which is all indoors and was slightly cooler than being outside. 

They have beautiful water gardens, that wrap around the zoo and conservatory, filled with pretty and unusual lily pads and water lilies.

Of course the star of the conservatory is the Sunken Garden. The flowers change with the season so there's always something new to see...and the whole place smells AMAZING!

The North Garden is filled with trees and other greenery and has a nice pond for the koi that used to live in the Sunken Garden. Abe loved watching them...

...and even waved goodbye when it was time to go. I don't think any of the fish waved back.

We also found this Children's Gallery (located behind the gift shop just before entering the conservatory), which was filled with educational activities for kids. Abe enjoyed "feeding" the animals...

...especially the gorilla who was obviously hungry, as he was already hoarding a handful of plastic produce.

He also lovingly brushed the zebra with a tiny bale of hay before it was time to head home. Next time we may have to save some time to visit Como Town or at least ride the antique carousel by the front entrance.

The Como Park Zoo & Conservatory offers the following attractions and amenities (click on the links for more information):


For more information about the animals and exhibits at Como Park Zoo & Conservatory, go to


  1. I love the Como Park Zoo... maybe more than the Minnesota Zoo. We're still hoping to visit it this summer!