Last week we visited Cleveland Metroparks Zoo and I'm ashamed to admit that it was not one of the items on my CLE To-Do List. That was a big miss! We met friends at the entrance gate a little after 10am on a rather chilly morning and, because they are members, we were able to get in free with their guest pass (thank you Carolyn and family). Otherwise, at $12.25 for one adult ticket and $8.25 for Ella
(kids under 2 are free), admission would have been fairly reasonable had we planned to stay for more than just a few hours in the morning. If we lived here . . . or rather, when we move here (yea!), we'd definitely cough up the $95 to become a member, making those morning, two-hour visits much more doable.
Getting to the park early was, as usual, key to enjoying the trip. All of the animals were out and active, eating breakfast or lounging in the morning sun. We got to witness a giraffe eating from a bush between his enclosure and the pedestrian walkway and were so close that I think, if he had tried, his tongue could have reached my head. A zebra was chasing a gazelle around in circles in their enclosure, and the merkeets were so busy digging new holes to hide in that I had trouble following their movements (man those suckers are quick).
Two hours allowed us to cover a good portion of the zoo (maybe 2/3 of it) and see the most recognizable animals, at least to a two-year-old. On return I will definitely be taking a camel ride, visiting the primates, cats, bears and the other animals we missed, packing a lunch so I'm not stuck buying the expensive and/or unhealthy available food options, and taking my husband along.