Seattle's Child

Your guide to a kid-friendly city

baby Malayan tapir

During its closure, Woodland Park Zoo experienced a baby boom including the birth of this Malayan tapir calf born June 10. (Photo: Jeremy Dwyer-Lindgren / Woodland Park Zoo

Woodland Park Zoo to reopen July 1

A popular Seattle attraction is back! Here are the details.

After months of closure because of coronavirus stay-home orders, Seattle’s Woodland Park Zoo will reopen to the public on Wednesday, July 1.

Here’s what to know:

  • Online tickets will go on sale starting June 22 and will be sold in limited quantities and for designated entry times.
  • Only the zoo’s west entrance (near the penguins) will be open.
  • Zoo members will be invited to exclusive preview days on June 29 and 30.

Once inside, visitors will be asked to maintain at least 6 feet of social distance between groups. (Helpful hint from the zoo: That’s the length of new mom Malayan tapir Ulan from head to body, the wingspan of turkey vulture Modoc and the reptilian length of boa snake Anahi.)

The ground will be marked to assist with spacing, and zoo staff will be present on paths and at various exhibits to help with questions and the flow of traffic.

Close-up animal encounters and keeper talks will not be held.

Face coverings/masks will be required, except for kids under 2 or anyone medically unable to wear a mask. (Compare yourself to raccoon Lucy and red panda Carson, who both have natural “masks.”)

Restrooms will be open and receive increased cleaning throughout the day. There also will be hand-washing and hand-sanitation stations.

Many indoor areas will be closed including Family Farm, Zoomazium, Tropical Rain Forest, Historic Carousel, Willawong Station, Bug World, Molbak’s Butterfly Garden, Temperate Wetlands, all playgrounds and mother’s/nursing rooms.

High-touch areas and surfaces will be closed. They include vending machines, face painting, kiosks, drinking fountains, water refilling stations and similar surfaces.

Limited food and beverage offerings will be available, and only the west ZooStore will be open.

In addition, the zoo will participate in contact tracing by retaining information of people who buy tickets online. The data would be shared with public-health officials only if there is concern about an outbreak and potential exposure at the zoo.


More things you can do:

Point Defiance Zoo and Northwest Trek reopen

Cougar Mountain Zoo reopens

Dreaming of playgrounds? Here’s what to expect


About the Author

Julie Hanson

Julie Hanson is a longtime journalist, South King County resident and mom to a 15-year-old girl.