Ask us for updates when you arrive to help plan your visit!

Will I see baby hippo Fiona on my visit?

 Fiona, the famous hippo calf, is making short visits to the outdoor pool. At this time there is no set schedule for these appearances. Durng PNC Festival of Lights, Hippo Cove is closed. If weather is above 50 degrees during the daytime, we suggest visiting earlier in the day.

When are the best times to visit the Zoo?

The Zoo is generally busiest on weekends and holidays (holiday weekends, Spring Break, etc.), but may have higher attendance than normal on beautiful weather days.

To avoid most traffic and parking delays- we suggest arriving before 4:30pm or after 7:30pm. Should you arrive in between those times and have issues finding parking, please think of the Zoo as a square. We will have other parking lots open around the Zoo- so please pay attention to directionals and advice from parking staff. We will get you parked as soon as possible! It’s also a good idea to plan ahead and purchase your tickets online to avoid the ticket lines once inside.

What animals will be out when I visit?

Animals on view during your visit will not only depend on weather, but the time of day you are visiting. Below 50 degrees, a number of animals are kept in their indoor bedroom area for optimal comfort or are given access to their outdoor habitat so that they can choose where is most comfortable. If you are visiting for PNC Festival of Lights, most outdoor animal habitats will be closed as our Zoo population is in their indoor bedroom area for the evening. Some animals, such as our Polar bears, are given access to be in their outdoor habitat at their choosing. All of our animal buildings will be open to the public*, but please keep in mind that some animals may be off view or asleep due to their schedule. (*Wings of the World will close in early December for renovation) Check our Zoo Today page on the day of your visit for updates on animals not on view for the day.

Photo/Video Policy

Commercial use of photographs, video and film taken at the Cincinnati Zoo is strictly prohibited without the Zoo’s full written consent.  Feel free to share photos with family and friends using #CincyZooPic!

Location Filming Guidelines: Film crews must contact [email protected] in advance to set up their video shoot and pay a fee to shoot on location.

Zoo Policies


NO SMOKING or VAPING! The Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Garden is a SMOKE-FREE ENVIRONMENT Call 1-866-559-OHIO for questions or to report violations.


For health and safety reasons, please do not feed the animals or disturb any plants. Bicycles, skates, Heelys, hoverboards, skateboards, roller blades, scooters and portable radios are not permitted on Zoo grounds. Please stay on paths. Pets are not permitted on Zoo grounds even if left inside vehicles. Shirts and shoes must be worn at all times. Because the park remains open during inclement weather, the Zoo offers no refunds or rainchecks. Because of the varying needs of the animals, some buildings or exhibits may close early. All visitors grant the Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Garden permission to use their image, or that of their children, in advertising, publicity and other promotions without payment or compensation to the visitor.

Where can I get a Zoo Gift Card?

 Zoo Bucks (Gift Certificates) are available for purchase here and can be spent anywhere at the Zoo, including admission!

Gift Memberships are also available by clicking here.

What Hotels are Near the Zoo?

Visit our “where to stay” page for more information on hotels and lodging.

Can I bring food and beverages?

Visitors are welcome to bring food and beverages to the Zoo with them. Alcohol is prohibited.

Where can I find nutritional information about food sold at the Zoo?

Please click here for nutritional information, including information about allergy needs and Zoo food!

What is the smoking policy at the Zoo?

Smoking, including e-cigarettes, is not permitted on Zoo grounds.

I am a member of another Zoo, can I use my membership to enter the Cincinnati Zoo for free or at a discount?

If your current membership is held with a Zoo that participates in the reciprocal program with the Cincinnati Zoo, you are entitled to a discount on admission. You can check our list of participating reciprocal institutions here.

Please note: this discount may only be applied at the Cincinnati Zoo ticketing windows.

How do I find information on encounters?

Click here for encounters!

Does the Zoo have a Lost and Found?

Yes. For all Lost and Found inquiries, please visit Membership Services/Guest Relations or call us at 513-559-7713.

Are service animals allowed in the Zoo?

We welcome guests that bring their trained service animals. Pets, emotional support animals, and therapy animals are not permitted in the Zoo. Guests should alert a Visitor Experience staff member at the Zoo’s Main Entrance upon arrival. Service animals entering the Zoo must be in their official roles, remain on a leash or a harness at all times and may not be left unattended. Guests are required to clean-up all defecation from their service animals while at the Zoo.

While your service animal has been socialized for most public settings, touring a zoo – especially for the first time – can be an unusual experience. Please watch for any indications that the Zoo animals are upset. These behaviors may include excessive flying, running or vocalizing. Should you see any of these behaviors, please step away from the distressed animal. The Zoo has the right to remove the service animal from the area if it is endangering itself or others.

Do you charge for parking?

The current parking fee is $10.00 and can be paid at any ticketing window or in the parking lot. Both cash and credit cards are accepted to pay for parking.

Do you offer a military discount?

We offer a military discount for all military personnel and their families. This discount is for $3 off adults and $2 off children. Military ID is required to receive discount and may only be obtained at the Cincinnati Zoo ticketing windows. A full list of our discounts can be viewed here. 

I was given a code from my company to obtain tickets. Where do I purchase these?

Corporate Discount Tickets can be purchased here. Please create a new account to proceed. Corporate discounts are not accepted at the Cincinnati Zoo ticketing windows and may only be purchased online.

I have a conceal/carry permit. I am allowed to bring my firearm on Zoo grounds?

The Zoo does not allow any firearm to be brought on grounds, regardless if the individual has a conceal/carry permit.


I have a question about wildlife outside of the Zoo. Who can I contact?

In an effort to make sure our keepers have enough time with their animals, we unfortunately cannot accept calls regarding questions about animals outside of the Zoo. The Ohio Department of Natural Resources (1-800-WILDLIFE) is a great resource!

Stroller and Wheelchair Rentals

The Zoo has both strollers and wheelchairs for rent at the Welcome Center, located in Historic Vine Street Village, or at the Conservation Carousel in Safari Camp. We have a limited inventory and provide these items on a first come, first served basis. No advance registrations available for strollers or manual wheelchairs, however there are a limited number of ECVs (Electric Convenience Vehicle) that can be reserved each day – reserve an ECV (reservations unavailable for same-day). We recommend arriving early to secure strollers and manual wheelchairs. For all rentals, a photo ID must be left with Zoo Staff at the rental location.

Rental Fees

Single Stroller Double Stroller
wheel 4 wheel 3
$10 / $9 for members $14 / $13 for members
Standard Wheelchair ECV (reserve an ECV)
wheel 2 ecv1
$10 $30