You read about bear hunts, sing about Old McDonald and watch Finding Nemo more times than you can count. Now…
We’ve missed our animal friends during quarantine and now it’s time to say hello again! The Detroit Zoo opens to members on Monday, June 8th. We can’t wait to visit and we’re sure you can’t either, here’s everything you need to know about what to expect at the zoo this summer.
Member reservations will be open for booking on Friday, June 5 and the general public a week later. In the first phase of reopening, 1,000 people will be allowed to visit the zoo each day and the spots will probably fill up fast. In the coming weeks, the zoo looks forward to increasing the number of guests to 2,000 visitors per day with timed general admission tickets. To ensure a touchless transaction, reservations must be made in advance.
For everyone’s health and wellness, there are special rules in place for zoo visits. You can review all of the new policies here but we’ve highlighted important measures below:
- All Detroit Zoo visitors (2 and up) – unless otherwise prevented by a medical condition – will be expected to wear a face mask or shield in order to help maintain the safety of all visitors, staff and animals. Face masks will be available for purchase at the main gate if you do not have one.
- Plan to show your ID, membership card and digital, or printed, timed ticket receipt at the Zoo’s Main Admission gate. There will be physically distancing markers for you to stand on while you wait to enter.
- There will be no printed maps available but you can find digital maps on Zoo Treks here.
- The Zoo grounds and facilities are being regularly cleaned and hand sanitizer stations have been set up throughout the park.
- Restrooms will have exterior doors propped open. Attendants will be monitoring capacity limits and disinfecting the facilities regularly. Closing every other toilet stall or urinal has been done to ensure guests maintain physical distancing in restrooms.
What You Can See/Do
Nearly all outdoor areas of the Zoo are accessible to visitors with the exception of the playgrounds. Indoor viewing areas, including but not limited to the Barn, Wildlife Interpretive Gallery and the Butterfly Garden, will be unavailable to guests in the beginning. The Holtzman Wildlife Foundation Red Panda Forest canopy walkway, prairie dog bubbles, and giraffe viewing deck will be closed. But, red pandas, polar bears, wolves, barn animals, great apes, rhinos, prairie dogs, and giraffes are all viewable from regular public pathways.
The Tauber Family Railroad will not be available during the initial opening. When it begins operations it will be at a reduced capacity, platform waiting areas will have physical distancing markers, and passenger cars will be sanitized after every ride.
Buddy’s Pizza will be open with seating allowing for social distancing of at least 10 feet between groups. Walkup food locations: Pure Greens, Boardwalk Station, American Coney Island, Dippin’ Dots and Cup & Cone, will also be open.
The Zoofari Market will be closed, but there will be outdoor kiosk carts for merchandise, and online ordering is also available.
About Carrie Budzinski
Carrie Budzinski is the Vice President of LittleGuide Detroit. She grew up in Livonia and Detroit and continues to live life in both cities. Carrie loves exploring the city and finding hidden gems in the suburbs..