10 Dublin Zoo Tips To Get The Most Out Of Your Visit
Adventures of Éire recently ran a poll to see what day out parents rate most in Ireland and, as always, Dublin Zoo came out on top.
So we have decided to put together a post on our top tips for when you are visiting the zoo so you and your family can get the most out of your day.
1. First of all, Dublin Zoo does not have a designated carpark and because of this, you are advised to arrive early, especially during peak season, as you could be walking for miles before you even get inside. The Lords Walk carpark is located to the back of the zoo which seems to be the most popular place for families to park. However, you are strongly advised not to leave any valuables in your car as the carpark is not monitored by security.
2. Children under the age of 3 go free and there are discounted rates for students and the elderly too. The zoo is also wheelchair friendly and anyone visiting with special needs can bring along a carer free of charge. ID and documentation are required. If you are in receipt of social welfare such as job seekers you can get a reduced price ticket if you bring along identification and a recent receipt from collecting your welfare payment. Tickets can only be purchased at the gate on the day.
3. During peak season, queues to get into the zoo can be up to an hour long. Skip the mayhem and book online in advance. You don't even have to print your tickets off, you can just present your e-ticket from your mobile.
4. If you are a Tesco Boost member you can avail of discounted rates using your Tesco Clubcard points. You can trade €3 in Clubcard vouchers for a children's pass into Dublin Zoo or €4 for an adults pass.
5. Make sure you bring along your reusable beaker; there are numerous refilling stations to keep hydrated during your visit thanks to the new Eco Explorers Trail. The sustainability trail is dotted around the zoo and everyone is invited to get involved, especially kids. To get involved simply download the app on a tablet or smartphone when you arrive. It's a very educational experience and adds something a little extra to what is already a fun day.
6. Plan ahead of your visit especially if there is a particular talk or feeding you want to see. For example, during the spring and summer months there are daily talks, events and feeds between 11am-3pm but in the autumn and winter months, they only take place on weekends.
7. Scooters, bikes, skates and heelies are not allowed in Dublin Zoo. If you bring along a bike or scooter you will have to leave it in a designated area. It can be picked up again after your visit.
8. An annual family pass at Dublin Zoo costs €185 at the time of publishing and it could save you an absolute fortune if you happen to visit more than three times a year. They also allow free admission into Fota Wildlife Park in Cork, Paignton Zoo, Twycross Zoo, Edinburgh Zoo and Colchester Zoo in the UK.
9. Dinosaur fanatics will love the daily talks at Zoorassic World from 12pm (only weekends during winter). Watch out for the flying poop as the orangutans pass above your head in the new enclosure - they've been known to be a little cheeky. The sea lions' new home is a must-see and of course, if you haven't been to the Wishing Chair in the farm, have you ever been to Dublin Zoo?
10. While there are plenty of restaurants, we advise a picnic to keep costs down on your day out. Dublin Zoo has hundreds of picnic benches and they have a Costa on site too near the giraffe enclosure if you need a little pick-me-up from trekking around the zoo. We also highly recommend you pop into the Meerkat restaurant because just inside the door is a wall of cards with discounts of up to 15% of other days out around Ireland.
Kellie Kearney is a Dublin mammy of kids aged 2, 3, 4 and 8. A self-confessed procrastinator and picker-upper of things, Kellie's love include coffee, doughnuts, travel and sharing every day true to life moments on Instagram of her expanding family. Follow her on Instagram: www.instagram.com/mylittlebabog.