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Family Fun in New York City: Queens Zoo

During our second trip to New York City at the end of September, my kids and I put our Wildlife Conservation Society family premium membership to good use by visiting the Queens Zoo. Located in located in Flushing Meadows-Corona Park in the New York City borough of Queens, the Queens Zoo sits on eighteen acres and is home to more than 75 species of animals that are native to the Americas.

Waterfowl at the Queens Zoo Alligators at the Queens Zoo 1

Alligators at the Queens Zoo 2 Lynx at the Queens Zoo

I took my daughter and son to the Queens Zoo on a lovely Monday morning in September. I was pleased to discover free parking at the Flushing Meadows-Corona Park. (One of my biggest complaints about New York City is that parking costs money so many places, which is significantly different from Central Illinois.) I suspect the lot fills up quickly on peak zoo-going days, but the parking lot was barely occupied when we arrived. The zoo is then just a short walk into the park.

Butterfly Garden at the Queens Zoo Roosevelt Elk at the Queens Zoo

Tropical Birds at the Queens Zoo Macaws at the Queens Zoo 1

When we walked into the zoo, the first animals that my kiddos and I encountered were ducks and geese in the Waterfowl Marsh. My daughter enjoyed feeding the ducks. My son really enjoyed watching the birds on the water, and he really loved watching the pigeons (Compasses, as my daughter says) fly freely around the zoo grounds. I love big cats, so I enjoyed watching the lynxes. I also really liked the aviary — and I normally dislike most walk-through bird exhibits — which is housed in a geodesic dome designed by Thomas C. Howard of Synergetics, Inc. and used during the 1964 Fair. My daughter also really enjoyed the playground right inside the zoo grounds.

Macaws at the Queens Zoo 2 Coyote at the Queens Zoo

Sea Lion at the Queens Zoo 1 Sea Lion at the Queens Zoo 2

My kids and I spent a couple of hours checking out all the animals at the Queens Zoo. The zoo is on the smaller side but is a perfect size at which to spend a few quality hours. We were able to spend a few minutes watching each animal instead of needing to hurry from exhibit to exhibit. The smaller size also meant fewer other zoo goers on a Monday morning in the off season, so I did not have to worry about my daughter getting lost as easily. If you are ever in the Queens area and are looking to kill a few hours with your kids, I highly recommend the Queens Zoo!

Chacoan Peccary at the Queens Zoo Cows at the Queens Zoo

Playground at the Queens Zoo

For more information, visit the Queens Zoo website.

Image Credits

Waterfowl at the Queens Zoo © 2015 Heather Johnson
Alligators at the Queens Zoo 1 © 2015 Heather Johnson
Alligators at the Queens Zoo 2 © 2015 Heather Johnson
Lynx at the Queens Zoo © 2015 Heather Johnson
Butterfly Garden at the Queens Zoo © 2015 Heather Johnson
Roosevelt Elk at the Queens Zoo © 2015 Heather Johnson
Tropical Birds at the Queens Zoo © 2015 Heather Johnson
Macaws at the Queens Zoo 1 © 2015 Heather Johnson
Macaws at the Queens Zoo 2 © 2015 Heather Johnson
Coyote at the Queens Zoo © 2015 Heather Johnson
Sea Lion at the Queens Zoo 1 © 2015 Heather Johnson
Sea Lion at the Queens Zoo 2 © 2015 Heather Johnson
Chacoan Peccary at the Queens Zoo © 2015 Heather Johnson
Cows at the Queens Zoo © 2015 Heather Johnson
Playground at the Queens Zoo © 2015 Heather Johnson

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