Start the Show
The Amazing Animal Ambassadors show is a great way to start (or end) a visit to the Zoo since it’s located in the Zoo auditorium, right next to the front gate. The show is sure to leave an impression with birds in free flight over your heads or animals exhibiting their unique skills.
Plan Your Route
The Kansas City Zoo covers 202 acres, so it’s a full day’s journey to see it all. You might consider focusing on one section of the zoo. Often, those with small children choose to do either the “topside” or Africa, but not both in the same day.
Check the map to find your child’s favorite animals — but keep in mind which animals you’re most likely to see, depending on the time of year. For example, the animals of the African plains are a treat to view, but they’re sensitive to drops in temperature so might not be the best choice on a cold day.
Also, some animals are more easily visible for your pint-sized companions. Indoor habitats, including Helzberg Penguin Plaza, Tropics, and Discovery Barn, provide exceptional viewing from strollers. Large glass windows at Orangutan Canopy allow kids to get nose-to-nose with orangutans.
Stingray Bay gives kids the chance to actually touch an animal, or at least attempt to. Beware, though, that the shorter you are, the wetter you seem to get! Pack a towel and take a quick trip into the restrooms at Helzberg Penguin Plaza for hand-washing and drying off when you’re done.
Other interactive opportunities like feeding lorikeets, camels, goats, and koi will help to create long-lasting memories so remember to pack a few quarters!
- Family restrooms are available in Discovery Barn, Helzberg Penguin Plaza, Tuxedo Grill, and Tropics
- Mother's rooms are located in Helzberg Penguin Plaza as well as Elephant Expedition
- Many of the Zoo’s restrooms contain toddler toilet seats
- Water bottle refill stations are located at every water fountain, often found near restrooms. These might not be available in winter, though.
- You can bring your own snacks into the Zoo, or buy food at any of our four restaurants, or at multiple snack stations throughout the Zoo.
That’s a Wrap!
Taking toddlers to tour the Zoo gives parents or grandparents the chance to share the wonders of the natural world with their little ones. And on the way out, you can both grab a sticker from the greeter…you’ve earned it!