2014 Tour Descriptions & Prices

Thank you for a great summer tour season!

Fall 2014 Tours

Fall tours run on weekends only in September and October, then will be closed until Spring 2015.

Want to book a tour?  See the links under each tour for availability/registration and view the bottom of the page for our policies.  We do not take day-of registrations.  You must book your tour online by 2 p.m. EST the day before your requested tour date.


Africa! Exhibit and Giraffe Feeding tour:
    Saturdays and Sundays at 2:30 p.m. until Sunday, October 26
    $15 per person (must be 5+ to participate)
    Maximum of 10 people
    Check for availability and make a reservation!

Synopsis:  What’s a better way to enjoy your day at the Toledo Zoo than having a close encounter with a giraffe?  Your guided tour starts with a little journey on our Safari Railway, where you’ll get dropped off at the back of the Africa! exhibit.  You’ll walk through the train barn, hay/feed storage building, and then peek into an animal stall in our hoofstock barn.  To wrap up our adventure, you’ll meet up with a giraffe keeper, who will show off our great holding areas and give insight into the hard work that goes into taking care of these tall creatures.  Then you’ll walk outside for the grand finale:a giraffe eating right out of your hand!  This walking tour lasts approximately 45 minutes.

Education Animal Center “EAC” tour:
    Saturdays and Sundays at 11:30 a.m. until Sunday, October 26
    $15 per person (we recommend 5+)
    Maximum of 6 people
    Check for availability and make a reservation!

Synopsis:  An important part of the Zoo’s mission is to inspire others to care for animals, and one way we do that is through education!  The Education Animal Center, a building off-limits to the general public, is filled with small animal ambassadors that we use in our educational programs and shows, and they are waiting to meet YOU!  Touch and take pictures with these critters, and add this special encounter that the whole family can enjoy to your Zoo day!  This walking tour lasts approximately 35 minutes.  Please note, children under 5 are not permitted to touch any reptiles due to animal protocols.

Elephant Excellence tour:
    Sundays at 1:15 p.m. until Sunday, October 26
    $15 per person (must be 5+ to participate)
    Maximum of 12 people
    Check for availability and make a reservation!

Synopsis:  Ever wonder what it takes to care for the largest land mammal on Earth?  Between our state-of-the art elephant facility and excellent keeper care practices, our Toledo Zoo elephants enjoy a healthy and active life.  Walk through the bull barn built in 2011, see just what an “ERD” is, learn what and how much elephants eat (hint – it is A LOT), how we train them, what enrichment looks like for these creatures, and other exciting elephant factoids.  This walking tour lasts approximately 45 minutes.  Please note – there will be no elephants in the building during the tour, and the tour is subject to cancellation based on the animals’ needs if necessary.

Ostrich Friends tour:
    Saturdays and Sundays at 11:00 a.m. until Sunday, October 26
    $15 per person (must be 5+ to participate)
    Maximum of 10 people
    Check for availability and make a reservation!

Synopsis:  Want to meet the largest living species of bird in the world? Go behind-the-scenes in Africa! where you will meet a keeper and see our three ostriches face-to-face. Feel the weight of an ostrich egg, learn about the structure of feathers, and discover the beauty and power these animals possess. You’ll get up close, visit their Zoo home, and hand-feed some yummy lettuce to our ostrich trio. Hear how the Toledo Zoo adopts and supports endangered red-necked ostriches in the wild too! This walking tour lasts approximately 40 minutes.

Rhino Mornings tour:
    Saturdays at 9:30 a.m. (early entrance into Zoo) until Saturday, October 25
    $50 + Zoo admission* per person (must be 5+ to participate)
    Maximum of 6 people
    Check for availability and make a reservation!

Synopsis: Join this rare opportunity to get up close and personal with our white rhinos, Sam and Lulu.  You’ll have the chance to stand next to the largest species of rhino in the world, as well as touch and feed them while learning about our remarkable duo.  You will also tour the rhino holding facility and learn how we care for these giants, keeping them occupied and content.  You’ll also hear how rhinos all over the world are faring in their native habitats.  This walking tour lasts approximately 40 minutes.

*Zoo admission fees are not included in tour ticket prices; admission tickets must be purchased online to accompany your early tour entrance.

V.I.P.enguins tour:
    Saturdays and Sundays at 2:00 p.m. until Sunday, October 26
    $50 per person (must be 5+ to participate)
    Maximum of 6 people
    Check for availability and make a reservation!

Synopsis:  Here at the Zoo we have all sorts of amazing animals to check out, so why not have a special encounter with some “Very Important Penguins” while you’re here?  During this tour, you’ll walk through our all-new exhibit, Penguin Beach, and watch these critters waddle and swim around their new home.  Then you’ll meet up with a penguin keeper and take a look behind the scenes to explore what they eat, how they are trained and cared for, and just what makes these little VIPs tick.  This walking tour lasts approximately 30 minutes.

How to Reserve Your Behind-the-Scenes Tour:

•  Summer BTS Tours run from Memorial Day weekend (May 24th) through Labor Day (September 1).  Fall BTS tours run on weekends only in September and October, then tours officially close until Spring 2015.
•  Under each tour description, see the corresponding weblink that will help you check tour availability and allow you to book your tour online.  Payment will be due at the time of booking.
•  We do not take day-of registrations; you must pre-register.  You must book your tour online by 2 p.m. EST the day before your requested tour date.
•  Zoo admission is not included in tour price.  If you have an “early entrance” tour (i.e. entrance before 10 a.m.), you will be required to purchase Zoo tickets in advance online or show proof of a valid Toledo Zoo membership to accompany your tour.
•  Please bring your confirmation (email/printout) to your tour.
•  If you have questions, please call the Education Department at 419.385.5721, ext. 2042 (8 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday) or email .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

Tour Guidelines and Limitations:

•  Tour experiences may vary based on animals’ behavior that day.
•  For the majority of tours, all participants must be 5 years old or older.  The only exceptions are the Education Animal Center tour and the Backstage Pass – Animal Show tour, which can accommodate any age (though we still recommend 5+ years old).
•  Children under the age of 12 must be accompanied by an individual in their party who is at least 16 years old.
•  When you are on a tour, please follow all staff directions and remain with the group for your personal safety, as well as the welfare of the animals.  Please do not touch and/or feed any of the animals you may see unless instructed by Zoo staff.
•  All tours are walking tours and you will be on your feet the entire time.
•  Wagons and strollers are permitted in public areas during tours, but you will be asked to park them during behind-the-scenes portions due to space.  Wheelchairs and scooters are accommodated, and we appreciate advance notification so we can be better prepared to meet your needs.
•  Tours are subject to cancellation based on animal needs if necessary.

Cancellations & Refund Policy:
Please email .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) if you need to cancel a pre-booked tour.
•  If a tour is cancelled 2 days or more before the tour is scheduled to run, you can receive 100% refund or it can be rescheduled.
•  If a tour is cancelled the day before a tour is booked, you receive 50% refund or it can be rescheduled.
•  If a tour is cancelled the day of a tour or is a “no show,” no refund will be issued.