making the most of your visit

The Phoenix Zoo’s staff and animals are excited about your visit and want to keep you safe. By reading and following the tips below — a fun experience will be had by all!

We value the health and safety of our community, members, guests and staff. Therefore, we developed our reopening plans with recommendations by health organizations as well as local and federal authorities in mind. Face coverings are optional while visiting the Zoo. Please follow CDC guidelines in accordance with your personal health and vaccination status. Learn more about our safety precautions here.

Lion King
  • Do not yell at or tease the animals, tap on or hit their exhibits or throw any objects.
  • Respect all fences and boundaries. They are there for your safety and the safety of the animals.
  • Our squirrel monkeys and orangutans are great climbers, but we ask that you do not follow their example! Do not climb or crawl on fences and boundaries.
  • Food prepared for you by Zoo concessions or brought into the Zoo is yours to enjoy, but do not share with any of the animals, including free-roaming birds, squirrels, etc.
  • We take the safety of our guests and animals very seriously. If you see suspicious or unsafe behavior, please immediately report it to a member of Zoo staff.
  • There are many factors that affect the Zoo environment, including weather and animal health. Consider checking our social media channels or website prior to your visit to check for any changes in the daily schedule or exhibit closures.
  • Remember, you’ll be spending the day outside! We advise that guests bring plenty of sunscreen, cold water and a hat or umbrella. Water fountains are available throughout the Zoo and water is also available for purchase at any Zoo concessions stand.
  • Consider bringing swimsuits or water-safe clothing for your small child, so they can enjoy splashing around in Yakulla Caverns or Leapin’ Lagoon! 
  • Most importantly, have fun. Incredible experiences await you at the Phoenix Zoo!


Zoo grounds encompass approximately 125 acres.

The Zoo includes approximately 2.5 miles of walking paths and is divided into four different trails – Arizona, Africa, Tropics and Children’s. Usually the Africa and Tropics Trails take about an hour each and the Arizona and Children’s Trails take about a half hour each. We recommend approximately three hours to see the entire Zoo, depending on the size and ages of your group and how fast you walk. Because we create exhibits that replicate the animals’ natural habitats, some animals can be difficult to see and visitors may be required to spend more time in observation.

We have more than 3,000 animals on exhibit, including mammals, fish, invertebrates, birds and reptiles.

You may bring coolers, ice chests and your own food. Please no glass containers or alcoholic beverages.

Prohibited items include alcohol, glass, balloons, balls, Frisbees, radios, whistles, musical instruments and other sound producing devices that may disturb our animals or other guests, hoverboards, Hula Hoops, Skip-Its, skateboards, scooters, smart trikes, roller blades, bikes, roller skates, rip-sticks, wheeled shoes (Heely-type), Segways, firearms, weapons, knives, selfie sticks and toy weapons.

Smoking, electronic cigarettes, and bare feet are also prohibited.

Fishing poles/fishing on Zoo grounds is prohibited. 

The Phoenix Zoo reserves the right to adjust this policy for Zoo sanctioned events.

Wi-Fi is not currently available on Zoo grounds.

Of course! We encourage our guests to take personal video or still photographs while enjoying their Zoo visit. All images and videos taken by guests and patrons are allowed free of charge so long as the images are used for personal, non-commercial purposes. All photographs should be taken from designated guest viewing areas or within the boundaries as it relates to special programs, engagements, etc. and the Phoenix Zoo has the right to withhold or withdraw consent to photograph and video or to reproduce photographs or video of the Phoenix Zoo and related property, which includes Zoo exhibits, animals and buildings or otherwise defined. 

If you are interested in taking photos or video for commercial purposes, please view our Photo and Video Policies available in the Press section of our website.

Smoking is strictly prohibited on Zoo grounds and within the Papago Park area. Due to potential fire dangers, smoking within Papago Park is only allowed within an enclosed personal vehicle and butts are not to be discarded within the park or on Zoo grounds. Electronic cigarettes are not allowed.

Yes, trained and vaccinated service animals as defined by the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) are permitted with visitors with disabilities. The Zoo follows AZA guidelines, which is for the protection of the animals. When a guest brings a service animal to the Zoo, a Park Ranger will review the Service Animal Rules with the guest. If you’d like, you can view a downloadable copy of our Service Animal Rules and our Service Animal Path Restrictions map before your visit. Please call Park Rangers at 602-914-4356 with any questions.

Service animals (such as dogs) are trained to perform tasks for the benefit of individuals with physical or mental disabilities. This includes, but not limited to, guiding individuals who are blind, alerting those who are deaf, protecting individuals prone to seizures and various other tasks directly related to a disability. Pets and other animals whose sole function is to provide comfort, companionship or emotional support do not qualify as service animals under the Americans With Disabilities Act and Arizona state law. Therefore, pets are not permitted inside the Phoenix Zoo. All service animals will be vetted by a Park Ranger. We are happy to answer any questions you may have.

No. The only animals allowed to accompany guests are trained and vaccinated service animals. Park Rangers are unable to kennel any personal pet and we do not recommend leaving any pet in an unattended vehicle.

We have many picnic tables located throughout the Zoo. They are available on a first-come, first-serve basis. Private ramadas may be rented for special occasions.

Some experiences at the Phoenix Zoo provide opportunities for direct contact with our collection animals absent a physical barrier.  Please be advised that on occasion, some of those animals may be administered dietary items that could be allergens to our guests.

Please check with the Valley Metro Transit Service for the most current routes and schedules. Simply enter “Phoenix Zoo” as your destination.

Unfortunately, we are unable to provide any advice regarding the health of a personal pet. It is not proper to diagnose an animal without seeing it. We suggest you take the animal to your local veterinarian.

We are not able to accept donations of animals. The most common animal donation request is for turtles. If you have a turtle that you can no longer house or properly take care of, please contact the Phoenix Herpetological Sanctuary at or 480.513.4377. They will adopt the turtle out to a caring home that meets the needs of the animal.

For other types of animals that you are no longer able to take care of, contact your local humane society or Maricopa County Animal Care and Control at 602.506.7387 (Maricopa County residents).

As a non-profit organization, we will consider requests for complimentary passes from other Arizona non-profits. We are unable to participate in third party or individual requests. Please visit our Charitable Donation Program page for information on how to request a charitable donation for your non-profit.

We do not distribute feathers or any other items from animals to any individuals or groups. It is illegal to have certain items due to the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora law. The US Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) will distribute eagle feathers to Native Americans for religious purposes. To request feathers, please write to:

Migratory Bird Permit Office
Room 5504
PO Box 1306
Albuquerque, NM 87103

that's zoo we are

The Phoenix Zoo is one of the largest non-profit zoos in the U.S., caring for over 3,000 animals, with nearly 400 species represented, including many threatened/endangered species.