The Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Garden is a zoo in Cincinnati, Ohio. It is located at 3400 Vine St., Cincinnati, Ohio 45220, in the Avondale neighborhood north of downtown. It is open from 10AM to 5PM on most days, 10AM – 6PM during the summer, and also has special hours at times during the year. Ticket prices are generally from $12 to $18 depending on a visitor’s age and how the ticket is bought. (Online tickets are usually cheaper.) Special temporary exhibits may have an added cost.
The Zoo has more than 500 animal and 3,000 plant species.
Founded in 1873 and opening its doors in 1875, the Cincinnati Zoo is the second-oldest zoo in the United States. (The Philadelphia Zoo is the oldest zoo.) Its Reptile House is the oldest existing zoo building in the country, dating back to the zoo’s opening. The zoo is designated as a U.S. National Historic Landmark.
According to the Zoo, more than 1.5 million people visit annually.
In May of 2016, the Zoo received much unwanted attention when a gorilla named Harambe was shot and killed by Zoo officials after a 3-year-old boy climbed into the gorilla enclosure and was being handled by the gorilla. Though the gorilla did not appear to want to harm the child, zoo officials could not coax it away from the boy and made the decision that shooting it was the only way to ensure the boy’s safety.
In addition to its daily programs and exhibits, the Zoo also has special events and programs including Hallzooween weekends, Zoo Brew, the Festival of Lights, and more. Visitors can also purchase “behind-the-scenes experiences” in which they get to see and touch certain animals at close range.
The Cincinnati Zoo Academy is a program through the Cincinnati Public Schools that offers certain junior and senior high school students the opportunity to work & study during school hours at the zoo as part of their curriculum.
Non-profit organizations can request zoo ticket donations via this online form.