San Diego Zoo Tickets

Book the best experiences by searching all San Diego Zoo offers, from €0. Visitwell directly highlights the best options, including deals, recommended, combinations, and more.

Opening hours

San Diego Zoo is open every day including holidays. It opens at 9am every day and during the summer months it generally remains open until 9pm and closes at 5pm during the winter. However there are exceptions such as Christmas Day when the zoo is open until 8pm. You can check the exact daily listing at https://zoo.sandiegozoo.org/visit#hours .

 

How to get there

Taxi- the zoo is just 5 miles from the International Airport and a taxi takes a little over 10 minutes.

Train- Amtrak and Coaster trains stop at the Santa Fe depot from there it is less than 4 miles to the zoo.

Bus- The number 7 bus operates from the city centre including the train station to the zoo.

MTS- the rapid transit system with service number 215 operating to the zoo.

Car- the zoo is signposted when travelling from all directions. Zoo parking is available on Park Blvd, at Zoo Place.

 

FAQ

How much does it cost to visit the zoo?
A one-day pass is available for $56 for adults (aged 12+) and $46 for children (aged 3-11). The ticket includes entry into the zoo, the guided bus tour, the Kangaroo Express Bus, the Skyfari Aerial Tram and entry into all the scheduled shows.
What is the accessibility like for visitors with restricted mobility?
There are special parking areas for visitors with a disability, accessible toilets and good access to shows. In some areas of the zoo there are steep gradients. A free shuttle bus operates inside the zoo to assist those with limited mobility.
Does the Zoo have lockers for guests to use?
There are rental lockers available outside the zoo, close to the exit sign. Payment is by credit card, no cash is accepted. The rental cost is from $8. At Front Street Rentals there is a secure storage area where larger items such as suitcases can be stored from $15 per item. Wheelchairs and strollers can also be rented from here.
How much is parking at the Zoo?
Parking at the zoo is free and the car park is located in front of the zoo. If the car park is full there is additional parking available in several locations across Balboa Park (also free).
What is the smoking policy at the Zoo?
San Diego Zoo does not permit smoking (including the use of e-cigarettes) anywhere on its grounds and this includes the car parks. Zoo visitors should be aware that smoking is not permitted anywhere within Balboa Park. If zoo visitors wish to smoke they can have their hand stamped for re-entry when leaving the zoo grounds to smoke. Visitors leaving the car park to and returning after a smoke break should retain the parking receipt to avoid paying parking charges a second time.
Are back packs allowed to be brought into the zoo?
Visitors are welcome to bring a back pack into the zoo.
Can I bring food into the zoo?
Yes, food can be brought into the zoo although containers such as coolers are not permitted. There are picnic areas located close to the car park and visitors can get their hand stamped for re-entry when going to collect their picnic. Do not bring glass, alcohol or straws into the zoo.

Must Know

Endangered species in abundance
The collection of endangered species at San Diego Zoo includes giant pandas, giraffes, elephants, polar bears and koalas. The zoo has the largest collection of koalas outside of Australia.
Trails through the zoo
Animal species or type and are linked by a series of trails. These trails include Monkey Trail, Hippo Trail and Tiger Trail. You may encounter hippos in the Lost Forest, arctic foxes in the Northern Frontier or even Rhinos along the Urban Jungle and alligators can be seen along the Wegeforth Bowl.
Energy and a map
To enable you to see everything the zoo has to offer visitors will need a map and plenty of energy. If you grow weary you might want to take the 35 minute guided bus tour of the zoo. The Skyfari aerial tram transports visitors from one end of the zoo to the other and offers a birds-eye of the animals below. In addition to the animals in their enclosures there are several animal shows and 4-D movies showing educational films about animals in the wild.
San Diego Zoo’s location
The zoo is located in the northwest corner of Balboa Park. The opening hours vary by season, even from one day to another. You should consult the zoo’s website for the most up to date information about the opening hours on the day you wish to travel. You do not need your own transport to reach the zoo as there is a good public transportation system in operation in the city. If you plan to visit the zoo’s sister operation of the Safari Park, you will need your own vehicle or a taxi as public transport is not an option to that location.
Safari Park
If you want to see more of the zoo then you can head to the zoo’s Safari Park located at Escondido 32 miles to the north. Here you will see some of Africa’s finest animals including lions and cheetahs roaming relatively freely. The park also has zebras, meerkats, gorillas and bald eagles. There are a variety of safari experiences on offer and these include a caravan safari and an exciting zipline safari.

Places Nearby

Balboa Park
Balboa Park is a large site of 1,400 acres and contains historical buildings, a large number of museums, gardens and green spaces. The park was created for the 1915-6 Panama California Exhibition and most of the buildings on show today remain from that exhibition. The architecture is predominantly Spanish in style and blend in with their surroundings. The highlights include the botanical gardens, the Museum of Man, the Museum of Natural History and the Museum of Art.
Seaworld San Diego
San Diego’s Seaworld is one of the main attractions of the city and particularly draws in families. Its location is on the waterfront at Mission Bay and has been there since the 1960s. Highlights at this attraction include shows by killer whales, sea lions, dolphins and other marine animals. The aquarium includes a close up of sharks when walking through an undersea tunnel, touching tanks for encounters with more placid creatures and tidal pools. Apart from the animals there are rollercoaster’s crashing their way through water obstacles to more sedate carnival rides for smaller children.
Gaslamp Quarter
The Gaslamp Quarter National Historic District is an area of late 19th and early 20th century Victorian buildings that have been restored since the 1970s in the city centre. The area today is one of trendy shops, restaurants and galleries that attract visitors as well as locals. The area extends over 20 blocks from Broadway to San Diego Bay.