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Milwaukee County Zoo

This sprawling animal park houses a wide array of exotic wildlife, and is acclaimed for its conservation programs and educational resources.

Milwaukee County Zoo started as a miniature mammal and bird park in the late 19th century, and today it’s one of the city’s great family days out. The zoo covers almost 200 acres (81 hectares) of landscaped grounds, with spacious enclosures faithfully recreating the natural habitats of its 2,583 animals. It’s noted as the nation’s first zoo to successfully breed polar bear cubs in captivity. Give yourself at least half a day to see the animals and take in the feeding presentations and other rides and activities on offer.

You can cover a lot of ground fairly quickly on an insightful guided tour by “zoomobile” streetcar, or with a leisurely miniature steam train ride. The guided tours run for 25 minutes. Purchase tickets from the Zoomobile Ticket Booth near the main entrance. Both activities run during the warmer months between mid-April and mid-October. Alternatively, get a bird’s-eye view of the animals on the Sky Safari chairlift. 

Don’t miss the Big Cat enclosure featuring African lions, snow leopards, South American jaguars and hyenas. The enclosure features regular feeding demonstrations and draws big crowds throughout the day. Check feeding times in advance, particularly when visiting during the colder winter months, when there are fewer events scheduled.

Year round, the temperature-controlled Aquatic and Reptile Center offers a close-up view of tropical marine life and exotic creatures such as the Chinese alligator and King Cobra. You can indulge in some fun side attractions at the zoo, including donkey and camel rides, a traditional carousel and zip lining.

Milwaukee County Zoo is located just west of the city in the Canon Park neighborhood. There is ample on-site parking and frequent public buses from downtown. The zoo is open every day of the year. Families get in free on monthly “Family Free Days” outside the peak summer season.


Guide to Exploring around Milwaukee County Zoo


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Lodging Near Milwaukee County Zoo

See all 136 Hotels near Milwaukee County Zoo
$92
Crowne Plaza Milwaukee West

Crowne Plaza Milwaukee West

10499 W Innovation Dr, Milwaukee
4.4
of 5, from 189 reviews
3.5 out of 5.0

Located in Wauwatosa, this hotel is 1.2 mi (1.9 km) from Milwaukee County Zoo and within 6 mi (10 km) of Wisconsin Exposition Center and Miller Park. Discovery World and Betty Brinn Children's Museum are also within 12 mi (20 km).

$83
Forty Winks Inn

Forty Winks Inn

11017 W. Bluemound Rd., Milwaukee
3.9
of 5, from 49 reviews
2.0 out of 5.0

Located in Wauwatosa, this hotel is within 1 mi (2 km) of Oceans of Fun, Milwaukee County Zoo, and Sky Trail. Sky Safari and Children's Hospital of Wisconsin are also within 2 mi (3 km).

$121
Residence Inn Milwaukee West

Residence Inn Milwaukee West

1300 Discovery Pkwy, Milwaukee
4.9
of 5, from 9 reviews
3.0 out of 5.0

Located in Wauwatosa, this hotel is within 2 mi (3 km) of Children's Hospital of Wisconsin, Milwaukee County Zoo, and Oceans of Fun. Sky Trail and Sky Safari are also within 3 mi (5 km).

Historical Governor's Mansion

Historical Governor's Mansion

343 Glenview Ave, Milwaukee
0.0 out of 5.0

Located in Wauwatosa, this country house is 0.7 mi (1.1 km) from Pettit National Ice Center and 3 mi (4.9 km) from Miller Park. Wisconsin State Fair Park and Milwaukee Mile are also within 1 mi (2 km).

$60
Days Inn West Allis/Milwaukee

Days Inn West Allis/Milwaukee

1673 S. 108th St., Milwaukee
2.7
of 5, from 139 reviews
2.0 out of 5.0

Located in West Allis, this hotel is within 3 mi (5 km) of New Berlin Hills Golf Course, Milwaukee Mile, and Oceans of Fun. Wisconsin State Fair Park and Milwaukee County Zoo are also within 3 mi (5 km).

$93
Hampton Inn & Suites Milwaukee West

Hampton Inn & Suites Milwaukee West

8201 W. Greenfield Avenue, Milwaukee
4.7
of 5, from 43 reviews
3.0 out of 5.0

Located in West Allis, this hotel is within a 15-minute walk of Wisconsin Exposition Center and Wisconsin State Fair Park. Pettit National Ice Center and Milwaukee County Zoo are also within 3 mi (5 km).

$76
Extended Stay America Milwaukee - Wauwatosa

Extended Stay America Milwaukee - Wauwatosa

11121 W North Ave, Milwaukee
3.2
of 5, from 80 reviews
2.5 out of 5.0

Located in Wauwatosa, this hotel is 0.5 mi (0.8 km) from Mayfair Mall and within 3 mi (5 km) of Oceans of Fun and Children's Hospital of Wisconsin. Milwaukee County Zoo and Sky Trail are also within 3 mi (5 km).

$100
Radisson Hotel Milwaukee West

Radisson Hotel Milwaukee West

2303 N Mayfair Rd, Milwaukee
3.9
of 5, from 115 reviews
3.5 out of 5.0

Located in Wauwatosa, this hotel is 0.2 mi (0.3 km) from Mayfair Mall and within 3 mi (5 km) of Oceans of Fun and Milwaukee County Zoo. Children's Hospital of Wisconsin and Sky Trail are also within 3 mi (5 km).