Frequently Asked Questions

Do I need a reservation to visit the Detroit Zoo?

Yes, all visitors (two and older) are required to have a reservation prior to their visit in order for us to maintain capacity limits within the Detroit Zoo. The reservation requirement will end soon.


Do I have to wear a face mask when I visit?
  • The Detroit Zoological Society has revised safety protocols. Regardless of vaccination status, face masks are required indoors for people age five and older. It is our goal to make the Zoo experience one that is safe for our visitors, staff and animals. Let’s work together.  Please be respectful, help each other and help protect the endangered animals.
  • We all have a shared responsibility to keep guests, volunteers, staff and the animals who live here safe. Guests who do not comply with the Detroit Zoo’s policies may be escorted from the Zoo.
  • Face masks are for sale at the Detroit Zoo’s Zoofari Market.

Does purchasing a membership automatically guarantee me a specific reservation at the Detroit Zoo?

Temporarily, due to the pandemic and capacity limits within the Detroit Zoo, purchasing a membership does not guarantee you will be able to select any time and date slot to visit. While you may see openings for general admission tickets, that may not necessarily mean membership slots are available for those same dates and times. General admission tickets are available in order to give people who may not be able to afford a membership a chance to visit. However, we continue to open up date and time slots for members each day.

Why are there general ticket slots available?

General ticket admission is currently available because we don’t want to exclude anyone from visiting who may not be able to afford a DZS membership. Each day, we open up more date and time slots for members. You will be able to visit your Detroit Zoo, we just ask that you check often.

If I’m a member, can I book more than one reservation at a time?

Currently, we’re asking members to only make a reservation once every two weeks in order to give other members the chance to visit.

Can I make a reservation in person?

All guests are required to make an advance reservation prior to their visit. If you need reservation assistance, please contact us at or call 248-541-5717. Please be advised we are experiencing high traffic on our reservation site and through our call center. Please try again if you have issues. Thank you for your patience as we do our best to support all of our members and guests. A limited number of general admission tickets will also be available at the gate each day with pricing of $15 per child or senior, and $19 per adult. The best way to guarantee your Detroit Zoo visit is to book your visit in advance online.

Do I have to show up for my selected time and date slot?

Please only make a reservation for a day and time you are planning to come. Unfortunately, we have a high percentage of members who are not showing up for their reservations, which is preventing other members from visiting.
Visitors purchasing general admission tickets will be required to pay a change fee per ticket to visit the Zoo on a different date.

How do I cancel my reservation?

Members can fill out the form here or email to cancel reservations. Please provide your order confirmation number.

All ticket purchases are non-refundable. Visitors purchasing general admission tickets will be required to pay a change fee per ticket to visit the Zoo on a different date.

Can I enter through the member-only entrance?

The members-only entrance at Rackham Fountain is closed for the season.

What are the dining and gift options available?

Click here for dining options. Click here for gift options. Credit or debit cards are strongly preferred as means of payment to reduce transmission risk of handling cash.

Is the Giraffe Encounter open?

For the safety of our animals, the Giraffe Encounter is temporarily unavailable.

Will convenience rentals be available?

Yes, convenience rentals are available. View our current list here.

Where can I find your full list of safety guidelines?

You can read the current safety guidelines at We are updating the page often.

Can I find out which habitats are open prior to my visit?

Yes, check out Zoo Treks to find out which habitats and indoor areas are currently open.

Why aren’t visitors allowed to feed the animals?

Visitors are strictly prohibited from feeding any animal at the Detroit Zoo. Animals have specialized and nutritionally balanced diets, and throwing food and other objects into habitats risks their health and safety. Guests who violate this rule will be escorted from the Zoo.

Is the Polk Penguin Conservation Center open?

The Polk Penguin Conservation Center is currently closed for repairs.

Can I bring my own food/picnic?

Yes, you can bring in your own food, non-alcoholic beverages and cooler. Grilling on Zoo grounds is prohibited. We have a large number of picnic tables throughout the Zoo for guest use, some of which are under tents. Feel free to sit at any that are not reserved.

Can I bring my dog/pet?

For the safety of your pet and our animals, pets are not allowed on Zoo grounds.

Are you open during certain holidays or in the winter?

The Detroit Zoo is open 362 days a year; we are only closed on Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s Day. Starting in October we switch to our winter hours (10 a.m. to 4 p.m.).

I would like to have an event at the Zoo. How do I get information?

We offer a large variety of unique opportunities for private events. Please visit here for more information.

Can I rent an animal? Can I touch an animal?

Zoo animals are cared for by specially trained keepers who, in most cases, do not come in direct contact with them. So while it isn’t possible for anyone to pet a Zoo animal or volunteer to work with them, we do have a couple of suggestions. Also, our WildLife Preserver’s “Adopt-an-Animal” program allows you to make a donation in someone’s name. It is a symbolic adoption – the donation will be used for the care of the animals – and he or she will receive a certificate and information about the animal they love.

How long does it take to walk around the Zoo? How far is it?

The Zoo is 125 acres. If you walk all the primary pathways on the main route, it is a 1.7-mile trip. Adding in smaller paths increases your distance.