Going to the zoo is an adventure for all age groups! For kids its something unreal…all the animals & birds in the stories they have heard from you come alive! Its amusing as well as a learning experience! Take some time out to get ready for the tour day and it will be very useful to have a checklist at hand to get prepared. I have prepared a list of things that I would like to carry to the zoo and am gonna share it with you guys!
Download the pdf version here
First things first! Before moving on to the checklist let’s talk about three things you should consider.
First one being that you have to inquire and arrange the tickets well in advance! Well I would suggest booking tickets online when going with your kid as that will be better than standing in queues to get the tickets with your kid. So, visit the zoo website and get that sorted however, if you still wish to buy the tickets while being at the zoo then let’s keep this aside as of now. You would also want to check their websites for special events or any updates about one of the special features being closed/cancelled along with considering going on a day when the weather is not too hot as the animals tend to stay inside and not show up on hot sunny days. So, check the weather for sure before heading out.
Secondly pack in advance, preferably the night before and keep everything ready at a place which you can grab and go, this way you can avoid the chaos before heading out!
Last but not the least, get plenty of rest the day before, because if you get tired soon while still in the tour, you won’t be able to walk longer and enjoy.
Now let’s move on to the checklist!
v Comfortable clothes
This one is very important. Please check how the weather is going to be on the day of the zoo visit and dress accordingly. Also make sure the outfit is comfortable. Carry extra set of clothing for the little one!
v Comfortable shoes
I would give this one the highest points as the need to wear comfortable shoes is a must. You will have to do lots and lots of walking, also standing and it will be rare that you sit! So, if you not wearing comfortable shoes you are sure to get tired soon, your legs will start aching and that will be a fun spoiler.
Check Zoo website if there is a map available and you can refer it or wait till you get to the zoo, they will definitely give you one to refer to and enjoy your tour to the fullest. One advantage of checking for maps online is that you can plan in advance which area you want to cover first or not cover at all.
Don’t forget to carry this one. What I would suggest is do apply sunscreen before leaving home, so in that case whatever amount of sun you are facing during the journey will not harm your skin. And then read the instructions too as to how many time or after how many hours you should reapply the sunscreen to get the best sun protection.
Please carry them as they will protect from sun!
Another one to protect from sun-rays!
It will be rare to walk with umbrella in the zoo, but do carry them, if the sky is clear and sunny, you might want to use them, also in case it rains there is a savior!
Do carry lots of water! I know we can always buy them or refill in the zoo itself but it’s always good to have some by your side. You should stay hydrated throughout the tour. I would suggest drinking lots of fluid throughout the day even if not thirsty, as you will be losing a lot of energy and you will thank yourself at the end of the day.
Carry snacks that you can munch on while at the zoo, carry something the kids like the most, but also include things that the elders would enjoy on the way. Some items you can carry are, Fresh fruits, chips, small snack/biscuit packets, grapes, juice, chocolates, candies. Remember to pack them properly.
Well if you are a camera person then this one is a must. However, I love taking photos from my phone too! Remember to charge the camera battery the night before sufficiently to avoid the battery from running flat early.
v Selfie stick
I know a lot of people do not carry this, but it’s definitely a quick way to take a family photo, and you don’t have to ask anyone to take that for you. I personally love to carry this with us as it gives us so much freedom while taking pics.
Trust me you would want to carry this with you. Carrying the child around is going to be lot tiring otherwise. The best advice is to carry the stroller/wagon and I find multiple uses of them too. One being you can store all the snacks and baby items right into it. Second this will let you not carry an extra Hand baggage or backpack which you would have carried otherwise. Also, if your child gets tired during the tour, he/she can sit in the stroller/wagon and enjoy rest of the walk and it will be a little less tiring too for you. Well if you don’t have a stroller/wagon then there are some zoo that offer stroller service for a price, you can check that out on the zoo website beforehand!
v Pack Lunch
Do check on the zoo website about the rules regarding taking food inside and eating there. Most of them do allow food to be carried inside! Though every Zoo will have food outlets, carrying lunch along is very convenient as otherwise it can get very pricey, also not to mention standing in the queues to get them. I would suggest definitely pack something for yourself.
v Tissue papers/wet wipes
Carry these as you will need them often.
Pack some as it will come handy during long walks in the zoo!
Do carry some cash along with you! You would want to feed the animals if your zoo allows! Also in case the zoo shops don’t accept cards, then the cash can come in handy!
Don’t forget to carry any medicines that the family members needs throughout the day. Carry some Band-Aids or preferable a First Aid Kit for safety.
v Going with a Baby!!!
Don’t forget to pack a separate baby bag wisely! Pack lot of diapers, baby wipes, changing mat, water bottles or Sippy cups, pacifiers, baby food, milk, extra set of clothing, bibs and their favourite toys to keep them entertained on the way!