Sunday, April 27, 2008

Hogle Zoo- How to go multiple times, cheaply

One of our family's favorite places to go, probably because there is something for everyone regardless of age, is the Hogle Zoo. There are currently over 1,100 animals, representing more than 250 species housed at the zoo, including elephants, giraffes, gorillas and tigers.

Situated on roughly 42 acres at the mouth of Emigration Canyon, it may not be one of the largest zoos in the United States, but it is one of the prettiest. The animal exhibits are located on rolling hills and winding paths among trees that are a century old. Emigration Creek runs through the middle of the zoo.

I remember as a child going to Hogle Zoo with my parents. Amazing as the zoo was then for a child, it's only gotten better with time. The new renovated elephant habitat, "Elephant Encounters" lets visitors see four different outdoor habitats for these great mammals. Some viewing area are up above the elephants and some are at eye (or maybe, knee) level.

One of my favorite places in the zoo (and my children's favorite as well) is to see the big cats. Lions and tigers and Siberian Lynx, oh my! The new Asian Highlands exhibit puts you into the setting of an Asian mountain village, and all around you are some of the most amazing predators you'll ever see up close. There are all sorts of interactive displays (touch-screen televisions) and guides to help you learn all about the felines.

Don't forget the giraffes, alligators, monkeys and birds- and this is just the start. Every time you go, it's a new adventure. Take the train ride on the small gauge train (for $1.00 per person, 1 and under is free), get interactive in Discovery Land (free with paid entrance), or take in one of the most popular attractions at the zoo, the "World of Flight Birdshow" (Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays at 1:00 pm and 3:00 pm, free with paid entrance). Get there early for the bird show; even in the new, large Wildlife Theater, seating is limited and the show is almost always full.

Admission is: $8.00 for adults, $6.00 for children (ages 3-12), age 2 and under is free.
Here's how to save money: One visit for a family of four (all children 3 or older) can range from $28 to $32. More if you have more children (with my family, one visit will cost us, $50). Buy a yearly membership. Family membership for two parents and all their children 18 and younger- $65 for a year. Since the zoo is open year round, make a few visits and get your money's worth.

With a membership, you get discount on the train ride ($0.75 instead of $1.00) as well as discounts on food and souvenirs. It also includes a reciprocity program that will get you into other zoos around the country for free or at reduced cost. One of the places you can go with you Hogle Zoo membership is the Tracy Aviary in Salt Lake City. You get into the aviary for FREE on the first Thursday of each month with your Hogle Zoo membership.

You can rent strollers and wagons: $6.00 to $8.00 each- but, why? Bring one of your own.

If you are going to spend the day, pack a lunch- it's by far cheaper than eating out or eating from the concession stands at the zoo.

Hit the zoo and have a wild time.

Place: Hogle Zoo
Location: 2600 Sunnyside Avenue, Salt Lake City, Utah
: Open 365 days a year (except Christmas and New Year's Day). Hours vary by season.
Cost: $$$

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Distance from:
Salt Lake City (downtown): 5.0 Miles
Ogden: 42.5 Miles
Provo: 48.6 Miles
Logan: 86.8 Miles

1 comment:

Holly said...

Plus if you go on the last Wednesday of the month during the months of November through February, it is FREE.