Cleveland Metroparks Zoo
3900 Wildlife Way
Cleveland, Ohio 44109
(216) 661-6500 

Heading out with the family for the day? Cleveland Metroparks Zoo has many great offerings and exhibits to teach the kids about animals, conservation and wildlife and plants from other countries. The zoo is free on Mondays except for The Rainforest exhibit. Here are just a few of the highlights that the Cleveland Metroparks Zoo has to offer and a great spot to catch a bite before or after your visit.

African Elephant Crossing

Just to the left of the Welcome Center at the Cleveland Metroparks Zoo is the African Elephant Crossing. These majestic animals cross over gated steps from one yard to the other twice a day for the crowd to enjoy. The times are posted outside at the building. Visitors can also enjoy viewing the elephants in an open outdoor setting or in a “nose to trunk” window.

Australian Adventure

Want to see wallabies, kangaroos and cockatoos? The Australian Adventure at the zoo offers opportunities to see these animals and more including a working sheep ranch, an aviary with colorful lorikeet parrots or take a ride on the Boomerang Line, a train ride through the outback, for a $2 fee. The Australian Adventure is a large eight-acre exhibit. There is a 55-foot Yagga Tree that features other small animals, a giant snake slide and other educational opportunities for visitors to this unique section of the zoo.

The Rainforest

Visitors can get a taste of the tropical rainforests of Africa, Asia and South America. This two-acre exhibit features tropical rainstorms, a 25-foot waterfall, over 10,000 plants and 600 different animals from these areas. Some of the animals visitors will see are orangutans, fishing cats, Oriental small-clawed otters, Brazilian ocelots, crocodiles, turtles, langurs and much more. This exhibit also features a Discovery Center, a research hut and other interactive activities.

Related: Best Day Trips For Under $100 In The Cleveland Area

Boo At The Zoo Halloween Event 

On October 17-20 and October 24-27 from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m., the zoo will bring back the popular Halloween event, Boo at the Zoo. This family event is a non-scary Halloween-themed event for younger kids. There will be animal shows, a Monster Mash Dance party, hay maze, magic shows, music and more. Children will get a treat bag and everyone is invited to dress up. This a fun way to get to see the zoo at night. Ticket information and sponsors will be announced soon.

Gus’s Family Restaurant
4377 State Road
Cleveland, Ohio 44109
(216) 661-5967

Although there are several spots to grab a bite at the zoo, if needing an escape from the crowds, check out Gus’s Family Restaurant in Cleveland’s Old Brooklyn neighborhood. Less than two miles from the zoo, this family restaurant has been in business for over 25 years. It features burgers, sandwiches, salads, gyros and desserts, but specializes in breakfast, which is served all day. With very reasonable prices, the family can enjoy tasty food without breaking the bank.

Related: Best Museums In Cleveland

Marcia Hudgel is a writer, yoga teacher, wife, mother to her animals and aunt to 10 nieces and nephews living in Cleveland, OH. She writes about family, animals. Her work can be found on