Zoo front entrance



WHAT: San Diego Zoo Wildlife Alliance is an international nonprofit conservation organization that operates two world-class parks, the San Diego Zoo and the San Diego Zoo Safari Park, and empowers people to connect with plants and animals, develop an appreciation for nature, and contribute to the safeguarding of wildlife everywhere by becoming Wildlife Allies. With a focus on healthy ecosystems and the interconnectedness of the health of people, wildlife and the habitat they rely on, San Diego Zoo Wildlife Alliance aims to drive conservation outcomes benefiting people and planet. San Diego Zoo Wildlife Alliance collaborates and partners with hundreds of individuals and organizations worldwide to address conservation challenges utilizing innovative strategies. The Alliance synergizes skills honed at the Zoo and Park with experience in the field to inspire and catalyze conservation action on behalf of wildlife, working towards a world where all life thrives.

The San Diego Zoo is a 100-acre wildlife park that is home to more than 12,000 rare and endangered animals representing over 680 species and subspecies. Located just north of downtown San Diego in Balboa Park, the Zoo is also an accredited botanical garden, caring for more than 700,000 individual plants, including a prominent assemblage of close to 13,000 specimens representing 3,100 species. Guests are invited to take part in exciting educational experiences and create lasting memories while supporting San Diego Zoo Wildlife Alliance’s conservation efforts worldwide.

LOCATION: 2920 Zoo Drive, San Diego, CA 92101

NEWEST HABITAT: The expansive new 3.2-acre Denny Sanford Wildlife Explorers Basecamp is designed to appeal to all ages and foster empathy for wildlife by exploring nature. Wildlife Explorers Basecamp, built on the site of the Children’s Zoo, features fresh and innovative elements, including eight buildings and habitats dispersed throughout four different habitat zones: Rainforest, Wild Woods, Marsh Meadows and Desert Dunes. The area blends innovation and immersive technology with opportunities to check out extraordinary species ranging from leafcutter ants and orb weaver spiders to prairie dogs and sloths. There are interactive play opportunities, like a unique water feature with a 7-foot-high “floating” stone globe.

In 2023, the Association of Zoos and Aquariums awarded San Diego Zoo Top Honors in the Exhibit Award category for Denny Sanford Wildlife Explorers Basecamp. The Exhibit Award recognizes excellence in habitat design, and highlights organizations that create inspiration through immersive conservation experiences. Wildlife Explorers Basecamp was also named a 2023 Orchid winner for Public Architecture in the annual Orchids & Onions Awards, hosted by the San Diego Architectural Foundation. 


  • Animals in Action gives guests an opportunity to meet many of the San Diego Zoo's wildlife ambassadors. Wildlife care specialists share their amazing inside stories as guests watch animals climb, jump and balance, just as they do in their native habitats. Some wildlife is unique to this experience and can only be viewed by attending Animals in Action.
  • Inside Look tours are entertaining and educational adventures offering guided views and interesting information about how the San Diego Zoo cares for wildlife. They are filled with experiences and stories that guests can’t get anywhere else. There are a variety of Inside Look tours to explore—from Crazy About Cats to Elite Adventure.
  • During the Discovery Cart tour, guests are introduced to the incredible animals and plants living at the San Diego Zoo. As guests sit back in the comfort of an expedition cart, a knowledgeable guide will share stories about the wildlife in the Zoo’s care and how San Diego Zoo Wildlife Alliance’s conservation work is making an impact worldwide. Guests may inquire about Spanish-language tours.
  • The Exclusive VIP Experience is guests’ key to habitat areas, wildlife interactions and the very best in personalized service. The Zoo’s team of professionals will customize each guest’s visit to suit their individual needs and interests. Guests can spend up to seven hours exploring the Zoo with a personal tour guide and enjoy a sit-down lunch. The Exclusive VIP Experience tour requires advance reservations (minimum 72 hours).

*Special experiences are subject to change and availability. Admission is separate and required. See sandiegozoo.org/special-experiences for more information.


  • Wild Weekend: Amazonia 
    April 20–21, 2024
    Discover the vibrant wildlife of the Peruvian Amazon with engaging activities and educational opportunities highlighting the region’s rich biodiversity. Guests will connect with wildlife and the critical conservation efforts they make possible across our Amazonia Conservation Hub.
  • Nighttime Zoo
    May 24–Sept. 2, 2024 (except June 15)
    Nighttime Zoo offers visitors a different perspective of the Zoo. The summertime experience includes later operating hours and special live performances from a variety of entertainers, but our wildlife continues to steal the show.
  • Rendezvous in the Zoo (R*I*T*Z)
    June 15, 2024
    This black tie fundraiser benefits San Diego Zoo Wildlife Alliance’s conservation efforts at the San Diego Zoo, San Diego Zoo Safari Park and around the globe. The event features dining and dancing under the stars, as well as an auction, wildlife encounters and live entertainment.
  • San Diego Zoo Food, Wine & Brew
    Sept. 21, 2024
    This annual fundraiser for San Diego Zoo Wildlife Alliance features gourmet cuisine; wines and beers from San Diego's finest eateries, brewers and vintners; wildlife encounters; and live entertainment.
  • Wild Weekend: African Forest
    September 21–22, 2024
    Central Africa’s forests are biodiversity hotspots vital to the overall health of our planet—and home to unique and intriguing wildlife, including critically endangered gorillas. Guests will swing into immersive activities and discover how they make a difference through our African Forest Conservation Hub. 
  • Kids Free
    Oct. 1–31, 2024

    Throughout the entire month of October, youth ages 11 and younger receive free admission. Kids Free month gives youths an opportunity to visit the Zoo and learn about the Earth’s wildlife and the conservation efforts underway to save them.
  • HalGLOWeen
    Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays in October 2024
    This seasonal celebration is included with Zoo admission as part of Kids Free month. The colorful and glowing extravaganza gives guests the chance to enjoy fun seasonal activities and Halloween-themed entertainment.
  • Wild Weekend: Oceans 
    November 23, 2024
    The health of our oceans is vital to the health of our planet and all who share it, and we’re working to protect these immense ecosystems through our Oceans Conservation Hub. Guests will dive into all they make possible for oceans and marine life while enjoying interactive experiences and fun surprises for the whole family.
  • Jungle Bells
    Dec. 13, 2024–Jan. 5, 2025 (except Dec. 24)
    The Zoo will be aglow with holiday cheer and decorations, with music filling the air, joyful roaming entertainers, and special food items and sweets.

*Subject to change. Certain dates not included, and times may vary. Visit sandiegozoo.org for full details.


  • The Zoo’s newest eatery, Busy Bee Café, features an array of chef-inspired menu items, including the Busy Bee signature honey bun, hand-dipped honey corn dogs, double burgers, pizza and wings, plus Family Meal portions of pizza and hot dogs.
  • Albert’s Restaurant, located in the Lost Forest at the heart of the Zoo, provides full-service dining featuring chef-curated plates, a patio with a private waterfall and a full bar.
  • Front Street Sweet Shack, the Zoo’s dessert destination, offers funnel cakes, gourmet milkshakes and ice cream sundaes, among a variety of other sweet treats. It is located on Front Street across from the Reptile House.

HOURS*: Open daily 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., with extended hours seasonally.

*Hours subject to change.


  • 1-Day Pass (includes one visit to the San Diego Zoo, Guided Bus Tour, Kangaroo Express Bus, Skyfari Aerial Tram and all regularly scheduled experiences)
  • 1-Day Pass Plus (includes all the features of the 1-Day Pass Any Day, plus one 4D Theater Experience)

*Prices and ticket packages are subject to change and availability. For pricing and information, visit sandiegozoo.org/tickets.

MEMBERSHIP: San Diego Zoo Wildlife Alliance’s large membership base is vital in helping our nonprofit organization make a difference for wildlife around the globe and help build a world where all life thrives. San Diego Zoo Wildlife Alliance offers a variety of individual and household memberships with options and benefits based on the level of choice, ensuring everyone can become Wildlife Allies.

EVENTS: The San Diego Zoo offers beautiful outdoor and indoor spaces with sweeping vistas and lush, wooded areas that provide exceptional settings for any event, from birthday parties and high school proms to weddings and anniversaries. By scheduling an event—large or small—at one of San Diego Zoo Wildlife Alliance’s two conservation parks, guests are not only selecting a unique and memorable venue; they are also contributing directly to support conservation efforts protecting wildlife around the world. Learn more at events.sandiegozoo.org.

PARKING: Parking is free.

PHONE: 619-231-1515



San Diego Zoo Wildlife Alliance
Public Relations

About San Diego Zoo Wildlife Alliance
San Diego Zoo Wildlife Alliance, a nonprofit conservation leader, inspires passion for nature and collaboration for a healthier world. The Alliance supports innovative conservation science through global partnerships. Through wildlife care, science expertise and collaboration, more than 44 endangered species have been reintroduced to native habitats. Annually, the Alliance reaches over 1 billion people, in person at the San Diego Zoo and San Diego Zoo Safari Park, and virtually in 150 countries through media channels, including San Diego Zoo Wildlife Explorers television programming in children’s hospitals in 14 countries. Wildlife Allies—members, donors and guests—make success possible. 


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