What to Expect at Cruise the Zoo
Last week the Phoenix Zoo announced their Cruise the Zoo Event in response to the ongoing closure. Thursday to Monday through the end of May, Phoenix Zoo guests now have the chance to see the Zoo from the comfort, safety and security of their own vehicle. Cruise the Zoo includes a guided, educational audio tour. Food and beverage options are available for purchase. Cruise the Zoo allows guests to view a variety of zoo animals such as flamingos, giraffes, elephants and more while maintaining safe social distancing measures. Tickets are extremely limited and selling out quickly. I purchased a member ticket for Mother’s Day within an hour of seeing the initial Facebook post. We loved the experience and as frequent zoo visitors, highly recommend the opportunity during this awkward time in history.
Cruise the Zoo Entrance
Cruise the Zoo is open for entry on your designated ticket date 8am-2pm. The last vehicle must be in line by 1pm. Enter the zoo parking lot as normal and follow the guides and signs. You will need to have your tickets printed or accessible on mobile for scanning as you get closer to entering the zoo. We arrived at 9:30am and waited in a moving line for about half an hour.
Be prepared by having the Cruise the Zoo audio tour ready to begin playing as you enter the zoo. I had the link on my phone and the tour played in the car through Bluetooth.
Cruise the Zoo Route
The Cruise the Zoo route includes two big loops traveling one way allowing you to pass by many favorite animals. The onsite staff help guide cars and maintain good traffic flow.
Have your cameras ready! Read the Cruise the Zoo F&Qs for specific guidelines. Our daughters were taking photos through the rolled down windows and also standing through the sunroof, much like many of the other guests at the zoo.
You’ll see the animals on exhibit in addition to the possibility of many animals in their natural habitats alongside the zoo pathways including birds, chipmunks, geese, lizards, rabbits, squirrels, snakes and more.
We spotted a kingsnake coiled behind a bird and are still amazed by the incredible photo opportunity. The bird was not harmed and quickly flew away when it noticed the snake.
The Zoo Animals
The Cruise the Zoo route passes by many favorite animals. The long list of zoo exhibits you’ll pass by include the elephant, cheetah, tortoises, lions, giraffes and more. Some exhibits have onsite staff to point out the animals and share fun facts.
How to purchase Cruise the Zoo tickets
Cruise the Zoo tickets have sold out quickly and limited tickets are available despite the Phoenix Zoo adding Thursday and Monday dates and additional weekends through the month of May. When purchasing your ticket online, there are a few add ons. You can also purchase a lunch pack (hot dog, chips, bottled soda or water), Kettle Corn and a souvenir photo. We purchased the photo and I highly suggest it to commemorate this historical zoo experience. Upon entering the zoo, a tag will be placed on your windshield to indicate your purchases and near the end of your visit, a photographer will collect the tag and take a family photo in your vehicle. We received the photo a couple of hours later by text.
The lunch packs and kettle corn are handed to your car shortly after entry.
The website suggests the experience takes about half an hour but we were in the zoo for closer to two hours. The cars were moving very slowly and rain stopped the tour for a short amount of time. This, in no way, took away from an incredible experience and we appreciated the extra time in the zoo.
The once in a lifetime Cruise the Zoo in Phoenix is a historical experience that we highly recommend. Each visit helps the Phoenix Zoo care for over 3,000 animals onsite with nearly 400 species represented, including many threatened/endangered species.
Do you plan to Cruise the Zoo this month?