Established in 1868 with a gift of two swans from New York City’s Central Park, Lincoln Park Zoo is one of the most modern animal habitats in the country. For 127 years, it had been managed by the Chicago Park District, but in 1995 the zoo shifted to private management. The change has been very successful. Three million visitors come through its gates annually to hear lions roar, see primates swinging through the trees, watch marine mammals from the underwater-viewing area, and be amazed at the various species of snakes, frogs, and birds that reside here. The zoo’s four-acre Antelope and Zebra area is home to many rare or endangered animals, as is the Birds of Prey exhibit, and the Japanese Macaque Forest. In the next year or two, polar bears and penguins will have a brand new 45,000 square foot habitat.
Free and open every day of the year, Lincoln Park Zoo has something for everyone and offers a nice break from the hustle and bustle of the Windy City.
IF YOU GO:
Lincoln Park Zoo
2001 North Clark St.
Chicago, Illinois 60614
Directions: Lincoln Park Zoo is located off Lake Shore Drive at the Fullerton Parkway exit, just minutes north of downtown Chicago. From I-94, exit at either Fullerton Parkway or North Avenue and go east. The zoo’s parking lot entrance is located at Fullerton Parkway and Cannon Drive (2400 North Cannon Drive, Chicago IL 60614). Parking fees ($20-$35 depending on length of stay) are collected at the lot exit.
Hours vary by season, but the zoo is open every day at least from 10 am to 4:30 pm; open longer in the summer months.
In addition to writing about her travels, Denise Seith is also a treasure hunter and loves a good latté. She and her husband own an online gold prospecting and metal detecting equipment store found at GoldRushTradingPost.com