Wellington Zoo for tots: a review

This week we had a mini holiday in Wellington as Sausage had a hospital check up for her club foot (it’s doing great, by the way).

Since having Sausage, it has been a dream of mine to take her to a zoo, as she is just crazy about animals.  I had taken her to Wellington Zoo before when she was seven months old, but that visit was more for me as the zoo offers $5 visits during August each year.  At that time she found it hard to see the animals – either because they were in the distance, or because they moved too quickly for her to track them.

Cuddles with the Sun Bear

Cuddles with the Sun Bear

This time around, she had a blast.

Wellington Zoo has upgraded a lot of its enclosures over the past few years, and these upgrades have been well worth the money.  Each area has been carefully planned and provides such wonderful ‘yes’ spaces for toddlers and older children.  Quite aside from the obvious attractions that the animals provide, there are so many things for toddlers to touch, climb on and explore.

Dotted around the zoo are things like a tuk-tuk and motorcycle, and a jeep embedded into the ground for safe exploration.


Tuk-tuk fun!

There are animal sculptures to touch, cuddle and pose for photos with.  There is an African village where everything can be played with or sat on.

Swishing through the 'grass'

Swishing through the ‘grass’

There is even a little playground (conveniently located next to the Tuck Shop and loos) where your tot can run off some of that excitement.


Wellington Zoo is free for children under 3, $10.50 for children up to 14 years, and $21.00 for adults (and there are also family concessions).  It’s not the cheapest thing to do in Wellington, but definitely worth it for the fun to be had, and to help care for those animals.  There are a few picnic spots, so you could take your own food to save money.

Just a tip: take a buggy.  Wellington Zoo is not for wimps.  Like most of the city, the zoo is very hilly and little legs will definitely get tired.  In fact, if you’re pushing said buggy, you might want to do some arm exercises beforehand to prepare. 🙂

As parents, my husband and I got so much joy from seeing our daughter’s sheer delight in seeing monkeys, giraffes, tigers, and red pandas for the first time.  I hope that her love for animals continues to grow, along with a growing awareness for conservation and our responsibility towards all the creatures on our planet.

As for her brother?  He slept almost the entire time.

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