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Franklin Park Zoo – tickets, prices, timings, what to expect

Edited by: Rekha Rajan
Fact checked by: Jamshed V Rajan


Before electronic gadgets, cinemas, shopping malls, and cafes invaded our lives, Zoo was the most preferred destination for family outings. 

In Boston, Massachusetts, is Franklin Park Zoo, where you find nature and wildlife in their finest and fresh form. 

In 1997, it was renamed the New England Zoo, but most locals still call it the Franklin Park Zoo.

The Zoo is home to more than 200 species worldwide, including lions, tigers, giraffes, gorillas, and many more. One of the most popular exhibits at the Zoo is the Tropical Forest, a large indoor exhibit featuring a variety of primates, birds, and reptiles.

This article explains everything you need to know before buying Franklin Park Zoo tickets.

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Giraffe in Zoo New England

What to expect from Franklin Park Zoo

There is so much the Franklin Zoo Park offers to you and your toddlers. 

Watching animals live and having hands-on interactions with them makes Franklin Park Zoo exciting and entertaining. 

Children’s Zoo, Franklin Farm, Tropical Forest, Butterfly Hollo, Kalahari Kingdom, etc., are the top exhibits and attractions of wildlife attraction.

Your kids will love the Zoo when they see Masai giraffes feeding, Grevy Zebras yawning, gorillas sleeping, and butterflies swinging. 

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Franklin Park Zoo tickets

Entry to the Franklin Park Zoo is only through tickets bought online. 

You can avoid last-minute disappointment when you book tickets online and in advance.

Online tickets help save both time and money – time because you don’t need to stand at the ticket counter queue and money because they are cheaper than the tickets available at the venue.

How does online ticket work

Once you purchase your Franklin Park Zoo ticket online, a voucher will be delivered to your email address.

On the day of your visit, you must show this voucher in your email at the admissions booth for entry.

Ticket Prices

Adult ticket (13 to 61 years): $20 
Child ticket (2 to 12 years): $14
Senior ticket (62+ years): $18
Infant ticket (up to 1 year): Free entry

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Franklin Park Zoo hours

Franklin Park Zoo is open all around the year. 

From 1 April to 29 July, the Zoo operates from 9 am to 5 pm on weekdays and 9 am to 6 pm on weekends and holidays. 

The Zoo operates daily from 9 am to 5 pm from 30 July to 31 October. 

From 1 November to 31 March, the Zoo opens daily at 9 am and closes at 4 pm.

The last entry is one hour before the closing. 

The Zoo remains closed on Thanksgiving Day and Christmas Day.

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Best time to visit the Zoo

The best time to visit Franklin Park Zoo is when they open at 9 am.

Visiting the Zoo early in the morning is better because the animals are most active, the temperature is moderate, and the crowd is yet to get in.

When you start early, you get more time to explore the Zoo. In between, you can have lunch at one of the restaurants and start exploring the Zoo again.

Avoid visiting the Zoo when the weather is too hot as animals would seek shelter in the shade and won’t be easily visible.

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How long does it take

If you plan to take your toddlers to Franklin Park Zoo, you will need at least four hours to explore the entire Zoo covering all the exhibits and attractions. 

Kids love animals and are curious to see how animals feed their babies, where they sleep, and how they walk. 

You can quickly explore the attraction in 90 minutes or so if you are a bunch of adults. 

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Map of Franklin Park Zoo

Map and Visitor Guide of Franklin Park Zoo
Image: Zoonewengland.org

Franklin Park Zoo is spread across 72 acres of land. 

Keeping a copy of the Zoo’s map is better for navigating and exploring the attraction, especially if you visit with kids.

With a map, you can easily locate the exhibits, playgrounds, medical rooms, restrooms, gift shops, etc. 

You can download and save the Zoo map.

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How to reach Franklin Park Zoo

Franklin Park Zoo is located at 1 Franklin Park Rd, Boston, MA 02121, United States. Get Directions

Public Transport

Take the Orange Line or Commuter Rail to the Forest Hills station, then take bus no. 16 to the Franklin Park Zoo.

Take the Red line to the Andrew station, then take bus no. 16 to the Franklin Park Zoo.

Take the Orange Line or Commuter Rail to the Ruggles station, then take bus no. 22, 28, 29, 44, or 45 to the Franklin Park Zoo.

You can plan your trip by visiting MBTA’s website. 

Car Parking

Those who wish to travel by car, turn on your google maps and get started! 

Car parking is free and offered at all three entrances of the Zoo.

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Major exhibits at Franklin Park Zoo

Guests spend up to three hours exploring the 1000-plus animals on display. 

We list some of the highlights of the wildlife attraction in Boston. 

Children’s Zoo

The first thing you encounter when entering the Franklin Park Zoo is the Children’s Zoo. 

It represents three unique geographical regions: Wetlands, Woodlands, and Grasslands.

You can spot Red Pandas, Prairie Dogs, White-Naped Cranes, and many other species here. 

It has amazing exhibits that ensure kids are involved and inspired by the wildlife, some of which are:

Grass Maze– This exhibit offers kids fun activities, like finding sculpted animals in the grassland.

Prairie Dogs Window Display– Kids can interact with Prairie Dogs, which are nothing but squirrels. 

Eagle Nest– You get a birds-eye view of the Zoo from Eagle Nest.

Franklin Farm

Adjacent to the children’s Zoo is the Franklin Farm, where you see animals chewing food, playing, and resting. 

Watch Ponies, Guinea Hogs, Goats, Sheep, and Donkeys lounging in barns and Chickens hiding in coops.

Tropical Forest

Tropical Forest transports you into the jungle, where you hear the pleasant sound of cascading waterfalls on one side and birds chirping on tropical trees on the other side. 

Here you can spot Giant 350 lb Gorillas, Pygmy Hippos, Lemurs, and an Anaconda. 

Giraffe Savannah

At Giraffe Savannah, you’ll find beautiful Masai Giraffes, the tallest land mammal in the world.

You also see a herd of Grevy’s Zebras, the largest member of the wild horse family, moving alongside giraffes.

Bird’s World Exhibit

Bird’s World Exhibit is home to many species of birds from all around the globe. 

Kea, Black Crake, Great Indian Hornbill, Gouldian Finch, Green Aracari, Marbled Teal Duck, Eastern River Cooter, etc., are birds you hear hooting, cooing, and whistling. 

Butterfly Hollow

Walk into the greenhouse, and hundreds of colorful butterflies welcome you.

At Butterfly Hollow, you will catch magical glimpses of butterflies sucking nectar and flying with their colorful wings open. 

Play statue and see if you can get one land on you. 

This exhibit is open only during the summer, so check the official website before you visit this exhibit. 

Serengeti Crossing

At Serengeti Crossing, visitors can see Ostrich, Grant’s Zebras, Hartmann’s Mountain Zebras, White-Bearded Wildebeests, and Warthogs roaming and rolling in the grassland. 

Outback Trail

Outback Trail introduces you to the wildlife of Australia that will mesmerize you.

Red Kangaroo, Brown Kiwi, Citron-Crested Cockatoo, Emu, Kookaburra, Palm Cockatoo, and Tawny Frogmouth are animals you can see at this exhibit. 

Kalahari Kingdom

The Kalahari Kingdom is home to the wildest beast and the jungle king, the lion. 

Even before you reach this exhibit, you can hear lions roaring. 

Let your kids climb into a “crashed” land rover against the exhibit, making them feel like they’ve come for an African safari.

Get nose-to-nose with lions through the glass and watch them bathing in the sun. 

Tiger Tales

Tiger Tales opened in 2006, i.e., much after the Zoo existed.

It features tigers and tells the heart-wrenching tale of Anala, the first tiger brought to the Zoo after being rescued from her owners, who kept her illegally. 

It also educates visitors about illegal wildlife trafficking. 

Gorilla Grove

At Gorilla Grove, guests meet with gorillas around the viewing stations and see their behavior and social dynamics. 

This immersive space is spread across 360,000 cubic feet of land with built-in vines, trees for climbing, and forage opportunities for gorillas. 

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Food at Franklin Park Zoo

No excursion is complete without good food; when you’ve kids along, you cannot leave the Franklin Park Zoo without a meal.

The Boston Zoo has amazing dining options that follow a sustainable approach to reducing the wastage of food. 

Giddy-Up Grill

The grill serves a selection of wraps, burgers (including veggie options), fries, sandwiches, salads, pizza, and many other foods kids crave.

Kalahari Outpost

This outpost is seasonal and offers delicious quick-bite options like hamburgers and hotdogs.

Picnic Area

The Zoo also offers a BYO meal option.

Visitors can bring their food along and enjoy meals with their friends and family in the laps of nature. 

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Know before you go

  • Franklin Park Zoo is part of the greater Zoos in New England, including the Stone Zoo.
  • The Zoo is open year-round for visits.
  • During winter, you may encounter fewer animals. 
  • Wear comfortable clothes and shoes for the excursion. It helps to carry your sunglasses, hats, and binoculars.
  • Check out the zoo calendar before planning your visit, as they often offer special kids programs and host special annual events. 
  • Reap the benefits of zoo membership, like priority tickets for special events and express entry on busy days if you plan to visit the Zoo multiple times a year. 


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