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St. Louis Zoo

In the middle of St. Louis, meet the exotic and endangered animals that live in meticulously recreated ecosystems from all over the world.

From majestic big cats to miniature butterflies, come face-to-face with animals from all over the world at the St. Louis Zoo. The zoo, spread across 90 acres (36 hectares) in the city’s Forest Park, is home to hundreds of species of animals. It is one of the few free zoos in the United States. 

Explore St. Louis Zoo on foot or by the Emerson Zooline Railroad, which leads you through some of the highlight exhibits in the park. Discover the zoo’s six zones, each with a distinct ecological theme. 

In River’s Edge, meander along a waterway that transports you through four continents. See Andean bears of South America, hippos of the African Nile, elephants of Asia, catfish of the Missouri wetlands and more. Learn about the amazing adaptations that animals make in The Wild. See how apes make the jungle home and discover how penguins and puffins survive in subzero temperatures. 

In Discovery Corner, meet animals intimately through hands-on and interactive exhibits. Stingrays and otters glide by in their watery homes. See the colony of meerkats living in Emerson Children’s Zoo. Walk among butterflies in the Monsanto Insectarium. 

Visit the oldest parts of St. Louis Zoo in Historic Hill. Check out reptiles and amphibians in the Herpetarium. The re-creation of a cypress swamp features in the 1904 World's Fair Flight Cage. See sea lions, primates and feathered friends along your walk. 

Meet some of the world’s most iconic animals in Red Rocks. Lions and tigers prowl through Big Cat Country, while graceful giraffes and zebras graze in the shade. Find Lakeside Crossing in the center of the St. Louis Zoo. Enjoy a meal at the Lakeside Café or browse the many souvenir shops in the area. 

Visit the St. Louis Zoo daily. Check the website for summer hours. Note that it is closed on Christmas Day and New Year’s Day. Although it is free, some of the exhibits and attractions have an entry fee. Stop at the Welcome Desk at the zoo’s South Entrance if you have any questions or would like to speak to a zoo ranger.


Guide to Exploring around St. Louis Zoo


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Best Lodging Options Near St. Louis Zoo

See all 695 Properties near St. Louis Zoo
Hampton Inn & Suites St. Louis at Forest Park, MO $114
Hampton Inn & Suites St. Louis at Forest Park, MO

Hampton Inn & Suites St. Louis at Forest Park, MO

5650 Oakland Avenue, St. Louis, MO
     
    2.5 out of 5.0 Stars

    Located in the heart of St. Louis, this hotel is within a 15-minute walk of Forest Park and St. Louis Science Center. St. Louis Zoo and Barnes Jewish Hospital are also within 2 mi (3 km). Central West End Station is 26 minutes by foot.

    The Cheshire $112
    The Cheshire

    The Cheshire

    6300 Clayton Rd, Richmond Heights, MO
       
      4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

      Located in the heart of Richmond Heights, this romantic hotel is within 1 mi (2 km) of Forest Park and St. Louis Zoo. Washington University and St. Louis University are also within 6 mi (10 km). Skinker Station is 26 minutes by foot.

      Animal House-purrrfect Location-steps to Park/zoo
      Animal House-purrrfect Location-steps to Park/zoo

      Animal House-purrrfect Location-steps to Park/zoo

      St. Louis, MO
         
        0.0 out of 5.0 Stars

        Located in Clayton-Tamm, this vacation home is within 1 mi (2 km) of Jewel Box, Forest Park, and St. Louis Zoo. St. Louis Art Museum and St. Louis Science Center are also within 2 mi (3 km).

        Red Roof Inn PLUS+ St Louis - Forest Park/ Hampton Ave  $67
        Red Roof Inn PLUS+ St Louis - Forest Park/ Hampton Ave 

        Red Roof Inn PLUS+ St Louis - Forest Park/ Hampton Ave 

        5823 Wilson Avenue, St. Louis, MO
           
          2.5 out of 5.0 Stars

          Situated in St. Louis, this motel is within 2 mi (3 km) of Forest Park, St. Louis Zoo, and St. Louis Science Center. Missouri Botanical Gardens and Arboretum and St. Louis Art Museum are also within 3 mi (5 km).

          Unique Saint Louis Experience! $50
          Unique Saint Louis Experience!

          Unique Saint Louis Experience!

          St. Louis, MO
             
            0.0 out of 5.0 Stars

            Located in the heart of St. Louis, this apartment building is within 2 mi (3 km) of Forest Park, St. Louis Zoo, and Washington University. St. Louis Art Museum and St. Louis Science Center are also within 2 mi (3 km).

            Forest Park Gem in Central St Louis $50
            Forest Park Gem in Central St Louis

            Forest Park Gem in Central St Louis

            St. Louis, MO
               
              0.0 out of 5.0 Stars

              Located in the heart of St. Louis, this apartment building is within 2 mi (3 km) of Forest Park, St. Louis Zoo, and Washington University. St. Louis Art Museum and St. Louis Science Center are also within 2 mi (3 km).

              The Parkway Hotel $105
              The Parkway Hotel

              The Parkway Hotel

              4550 Forest Park Ave, St. Louis, MO
                 
                3.0 out of 5.0 Stars

                Located in Central West End, this hotel is within a 10-minute walk of Forest Park, Barnes Jewish Hospital, and World Chess Hall of Fame. Cathedral Basilica of St. Louis and St. Louis Science Center are also within 1 mi (2 km). Central West End Station is 6 minutes by foot.

                Beauty in Central of Saint Louis! $40
                Beauty in Central of Saint Louis!

                Beauty in Central of Saint Louis!

                St. Louis, MO
                   
                  0.0 out of 5.0 Stars

                  Located in the heart of St. Louis, this apartment building is within 2 mi (3 km) of Forest Park, St. Louis Zoo, and Washington University. St. Louis Art Museum and St. Louis Science Center are also within 2 mi (3 km).