Connect
To Top

Family Fun in New York City: Prospect Park Zoo

In October of last year, my kiddos and I put our Wildlife Conservation Society family premium membership to use by visiting the Prospect Park Zoo on one of the last beautiful autumn days of the month. Located off Flatbush Avenue on the eastern side of Prospect Park in Brooklyn in New York City, Prospect Park Zoo houses nearly 630 animals representing about 101 species. The zoo occupies a total of twelve acres and sits across from the Brooklyn Botanic Garden.

Lioness and Cubs Statue at Prospect Park Zoo Black Swan and Turtles at Prospect Park Zoo

Goats at Prospect Park Zoo Miniature Zebu at Prospect Park Zoo

As I quickly discovered upon approaching Prospect Park, the only downside to the Prospect Park Zoo is the parking situation. There is no zoo parking lot, only street parking. But I was lucky enough to find an open spot just a few minutes walk down the street from the zoo. When we got to the zoo, my kids and I immediately sat down on a bench across from the sea lion pool and ate a picnic lunch while watching the sea lions swim, leap, and dive.

Cows at Prospect Park Zoo Cow at Prospect Park Zoo

Mongooses at Prospect Park Zoo Sea Lion at Prospect Park Zoo

Sea Lion Feeding at Prospect Park Zoo 1 Sea Lion Feeding at Prospect Park Zoo 2

Prospect Park Zoo is a smaller zoo, so we were able to take our time looking at the animals. My son really liked petting the sheep in the petting zoo area. Both kids liked watching the red pandas. The Discovery Trail was also a big hit with animals including black-tailed prairie dogs, porcupines, emus, dingos, and North American river otters. My daughter especially liked crawling through the underground burrows to observation posts roofed with clear, hemispherical observation ports from which she could see the prairie dogs up close and personal.

Pallas Cat at Prospect Park Zoo Mother and Young Baboons at Prospect Park Zoo

Young Baboons and Mother Baboon Nursing Baby Baboon at Prospect Park Zoo Baby Family at Prospect Park Zoo

Mother Baboon Nursing Newborn Baboon at Prospect Park Zoo Water Fowl at Prospect Park Zoo

My absolute favorite part of the Prospect Park Zoo was the troop of hamadryas baboons in the Animal Lifestyles building. The exhibit allowed us to observe the troop in a large glassed-in gallery which looks out into a rocky outcrop. Two of the younger baboons were playing right up against the glass, so my kids and I could look at the amazing animals from just inches away. Most excitingly, a newborn baboon had been born that morning, so we got to watch the mother nurse and care for the six-hour-old baby. We spent a good half an hour observing the baboons, especially the mother and baby. Therefore, if you ever find yourself in Brooklyn near Prospect Park, I highly recommend paying a visit to the zoo for a few hours.

Prairie Dogs at Prospect Park Zoo Two Prairie Dogs at Prospect Park Zoo

Dingo at Prospect Park Zoo Emus at Prospect Park Zoo

Red Panda at Prospect Park Zoo Porcupine at Prospect Park Zoo

For more information, visit the Prospect Park Zoo website.

Image Credits

Lioness and Cubs Statue at Prospect Park Zoo © 2015 Heather Johnson
Black Swan and Turtles at Prospect Park Zoo © 2015 Heather Johnson
Goats at Prospect Park Zoo © 2015 Heather Johnson
Miniature Zebu at Prospect Park Zoo © 2015 Heather Johnson
Cows at Prospect Park Zoo © 2015 Heather Johnson
Cow at Prospect Park Zoo © 2015 Heather Johnson
Mongooses at Prospect Park Zoo © 2015 Heather Johnson
Sea Lion at Prospect Park Zoo © 2015 Heather Johnson
Sea Lion Feeding at Prospect Park Zoo 1 © 2015 Heather Johnson
Sea Lion Feeding at Prospect Park Zoo 2 © 2015 Heather Johnson
Pallas Cat at Prospect Park Zoo © 2015 Heather Johnson
Mother and Young Baboons at Prospect Park Zoo © 2015 Heather Johnson
Young Baboons and Mother Baboon Nursing Baby Baboon at Prospect Park Zoo © 2015 Heather Johnson
Baby Family at Prospect Park Zoo © 2015 Heather Johnson
Mother Baboon Nursing Newborn Baboon at Prospect Park Zoo © 2015 Heather Johnson
Water Fowl at Prospect Park Zoo © 2015 Heather Johnson
Prairie Dogs at Prospect Park Zoo © 2015 Heather Johnson
Two Prairie Dogs at Prospect Park Zoo © 2015 Heather Johnson
Dingo at Prospect Park Zoo © 2015 Heather Johnson
Emus at Prospect Park Zoo © 2015 Heather Johnson
Red Panda at Prospect Park Zoo © 2015 Heather Johnson
Porcupine at Prospect Park Zoo © 2015 Heather Johnson

  • http://www.lizventures.com/ Liz Mays

    How exciting that you were able to see the baby baboon! Your timing was perfect, and it looks like there is oodles more to see there too.

  • http://sweetascanbe.info/ Esme Sy

    What a wonderful time you had at the zoo. Your timing is perfect. I’m sure it was fun to watch the baboon nursing her new baby.

    • http://parentingpatch.com/ Heather Johnson

      I was so excited to see the baby and mama and then to learn that the baby was only hours old!

  • Carlee C

    This place looks right up my family’s alley! We especially like the Red Panda after seeing Kung Fu Panda again.

  • valmg

    I’m only 60-75 minutes out of NYC and have never been to this zoo. I’m hoping to get there this year.

    • http://parentingpatch.com/ Heather Johnson

      Definitely try to get there. For a little zoo, the Central Park Zoo is pretty amazing! Plus you can walk around the park afterwards.

  • http://www.turningclockback.com/ Diane Hoffmaster

    I grew up an hour outside of NYC but have never been here. I am hoping to get to take the kids next year. I bet they would enjoy this!

  • http://themommaven.com MomMaven

    Sounds like a fun zoo. I haven’t been to NYC except for a chorus trip in 1980!

  • mail4rosey

    Oh you did put your membership to good use. We haven’t been to the zoo for awhile. We’re overdue. :)

  • Alicia V.

    This zoo looks like a great time for all! My kids love animals and zoos. I wish we were closer to New York to be able to give this one a try.

  • Molly

    My kids love zoos, and I appreciate them when they’re well done and the animals seem happy the way the ones you saw were :) Thanks for sharing, I’d love to take them there sometime.

  • Michele

    Although I live in NY (Westchester County) and have been to the Bronx Zoo many times I have never gone to the Brooklyn Zoo. It sounds like a great way to spend an afternoon.

    • http://parentingpatch.com/ Heather Johnson

      We love the Bronx Zoo too. The zoo in Brooklyn is not that much farther away, so I definitely recommend going if you get a chance.

  • http://www.thevampirequeendiaries.info/ Mai C.

    Cool. I love going to zoos especially with the kids. I’m planning to take them this coming February to a mini zoo nearby!

  • http://www.sahmreviews.com Scott

    I sometimes prefer smaller zoos like this. They usually let you get up and close with the animals!

  • http://www.bestofthislife.com/ Emily // The Best of this Life

    Prospect Park is such a nice part of New York! This zoo is lovely and I’m glad you had such a nice experience.

  • bargainbriana

    This looks like a wonderful place to take kids. Will have to remember when we are in the area !

  • NuRechia Harris

    Smaller zoos are so much fun especially with children my son’s age, they really get in to it and its not too much of a hike for a toddler

  • Rosie

    wow I never heard of Wildlife Conservation Society or this zoo, it does look so nice. Cute little critters can be more fun, that is what I remember most from when I was little and being at a zoo. the animals at kids’ eye level!

More in Blog

Pin It on Pinterest