Woo Woo! The little Chattanooga Zoo Zoo. Oh wait… I think that was so supposed to be Choo Choo. Either way for a family with two little ones the Chattanooga Zoo was a fun family outing. At just over a dozen acres this is probably the smallest zoo we have ever reviewed. I will say to their credit it did not feel that small going through. The exhibits were well designed. Grounds were clean and the animals seemed happy. All three things that make for a good zoo visit in our book.
No lions, tigers, elephants, or bears to say oh my. Actually glad about that. Not enough room for them so unlike some zoos the Chattanooga Zoo made, in our opinion, better choices. They have a nice collection of smaller animals. Lots of monkeys, a very nice red panda exhibit, reptiles, and birds make up most of their collection. Our children are young enough that seeing any animal that is different from the ones they see around the neighborhood fillls them with excitement.
The Chattanooga Zoo is divided up into 5 themed zones. The Gombe Forest is their marquee exhibit. Two waterfalls, a troop of chimpanzees, some reptiles and other animals make this one of the better stops at the zoo. Not to say the others were bad. In fact, every themed area in the zoo was of similar quality. Corcovado Jungle with its nice jaguar exhibit area. Along with the Himalayan Passage with its Snow Leopards and Red Panda are worth seeing. My two girls liked the Warner Park Ranch a farm petting zoo area. Chattanooga Zoo also has a nice large mountain lion exhibit in their Walkin’ the Tracks section. Like I mentioned before they have no large animals on display, but what they do have is a nice variety that is fun to see.
I was really impressed with their cat exhibits. The mountain lion has a viewing platform that is inside a train car. The jaguar exhibit in their Corcovado Jungle area had multiple views for the majestic cats. However, my favorite is their snow leopard area. Our home town zoo has snow leopards but their exhibit is so crowded with plants and sits on a hill that it is hard to get a nice view of the animal, one of my favorites. Here they had nice size yard with a large rock cropping complete with waterfall. My wife’s favorite was their red panda facility. It is the largest indoor red panda exhibit in the country.
We have now traveled through the Chattanooga area twice in the last 4 years. Each time we walk away with a greater appreciation for the area. Chattanooga has turned into quite a fun little trip. The wonderful state parks within a few hours’ drive, a world class aquarium, history, and this fun family friendly zoo.
Located at 301 North Holtzclaw Avenue, Chattanooga
Hours of Operation: Open daily from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. closed Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year’s Day
Cost as of this Posting Adults 13 to 65 $8.95, Seniors 65 and over $6.95 and Kids 3 to 12 $5.95
For more information visit their website at http://www.chattzoo.org/
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