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San Francisco Zoo

The San Francisco Zoo is a popular attraction for families, animal lovers, and tourists, offering an opportunity to see a diverse collection of animals from around the world. It is located in the southwestern corner of San Francisco, close to the Pacific Ocean. The zoo strives to connect visitors with wildlife, inspire caring for nature, and advance conservation action.


The San Francisco Zoo began in the 1920s with just a few exotic animals kept in Golden Gate Park. The actual zoo facility was established in 1929 at its current location, and it has since evolved from traditional exhibits to more modern and spacious naturalistic habitats that promote the well-being and natural behavior of the animals.


  • Establishment: Officially opened in 1929.
  • Size: The zoo covers an area of around 100 acres.
  • Collection: Home to over 1,000 individual animals, representing more than 250 species.
  • Special Exhibits: The zoo features a variety of specialized exhibits such as the African Savanna, the Lemur Forest, and the Children’s Zoo.


The San Francisco Zoo is located at Sloat Blvd. and the Great Highway, San Francisco, CA 94132. It is situated near Ocean Beach on the western side of the city.

Website Link

For more detailed information, including hours, ticket prices, and upcoming events, you can visit the official San Francisco Zoo website: San Francisco Zoo & Gardens.

Opening Hours

The zoo is typically open every day of the year, with the exception of certain holidays or special events. The opening hours can vary by season, so it’s best to check the official website or call ahead for the current schedule.

Things to Do

  1. Animal Exhibits: Explore a wide range of exhibits and see animals from all over the world.
  2. Guided Tours: Join a guided tour to learn more about the animals and the zoo’s conservation efforts.
  3. Feedings and Talks: Attend scheduled animal feedings and keeper talks to gain deeper insight into animal behavior and care.
  4. Children’s Zoo: A special section designed for younger visitors to interact with and learn about animals.
  5. Playgrounds: There are play areas for children to enjoy.
  6. Gardens: The zoo is also known for its beautiful gardens with native plants and flowers.
  7. Events: Participate in special events, such as zoo camp, family overnight stays, and wildlife lectures.

Tips For Visiting

  • Plan Ahead: Check the zoo’s daily schedule online to make the most of your visit, including any special events or animal talks.
  • Wear Comfortable Shoes: There’s a lot of ground to cover, so comfortable footwear is a must.
  • Dress in Layers: San Francisco’s weather can be quite variable, even within a single day.
  • Bring Essentials: Don’t forget sunscreen, a hat, and possibly a reusable water bottle.
  • Arrive Early: Getting there early can help you avoid crowds and see some animals that may be more active in the morning.
  • Respect the Animals: Remember to observe quietly, not tap on glass, and follow all rules designed to keep both the animals and visitors safe.


The San Francisco Zoo is more than just an entertaining destination; it’s an institution dedicated to the care of a wide variety of animals and the education of the public about wildlife conservation. Whether you’re a local or a visitor to the city, the zoo offers a delightful and educational day out for all ages, combining the joys of animal observation with the responsibility of environmental stewardship.

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