FAQ’s

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: How do I find the zoo?
A: Here are some directions to the Lake Superior Zoo:
From Canal Park/Downtown/North:
Get on I-35 S and follow it to MN-23 W/Grand Ave (Exit 251B – left exit). Continue 1 mile to 2nd set of lights (71st Ave W). Take a Right. Zoo is located 1 block on the left.
From Wisconsin:
Enter MN via the Blatnik or Bong Bridge. Please note, the west bound lane on the Bong Bridge is closed for construction. Get on I-35 S and follow it to MN-23 W/Grand Ave (Exit 251B – left exit). Continue 1 mile to 2nd set of lights (71st  Ave W). Take a Right. Zoo is located 1 block on the left.
From the South:
Take I-35 N to Cody Street (Exit 251A- right exit). Continue on this long exit to 59th Ave W. Take a right. Go ½ mile to MN-23/Grand Ave. Take a right and continue 1 mile to 2nd set of lights (71st Ave W). Take a Right. Zoo is located 1 block on the left.
On Your Smart Phone or GPS:
Type in our address: “7210 Fremont St, Duluth, MN 55807”

Q: How much does it cost to park at the zoo?
A: The parking is FREE!

Q:  I am a member of the Minnesota Zoo/Great Lakes Aquarium.  Do I get a discount on admission?
A:  Yes.  Members of the Minnesota Zoo and the Great Lakes Aquarium receive a 50% discount on our regular admission prices, but not on special events, such as Boo at the Zoo.

Q: Can we bring/have a picnic at the zoo and bring our own food?
A: Yes. Please keep in mind that we do not allow straws at the zoo because it is a choking hazard for our animals. We encourage you to bring reusable containers for your food and drink. Fairmont Park, located directly adjacent to the zoo’s parking lot is also a great picnic spot.

Q: Are you open in the winter?
A: Yes! The zoo is open all year. We are closed just 3 days out of the year: Thanksgiving, Christmas Day and New Year’s Day. Winter is a great season to visit the zoo because many of our large carnivores are more active when it’s cold.

Q:  Don’t the animals get cold in the winter?
A:  Most of our animals are well-suited for Minnesota winters. They have large heated rocks in their exhibits and access to their holding areas.  Our animals that are not well-adapted to winter, such as the red kangaroos and black swan, are housed indoors.

Q:  Will we be able to pet any of the animals?
A:  There is a good chance you will. Our barnyard is a great place to get “up close and personal” with some of our animals. Also, we frequently have a docent in our Griggs Learning Center who can introduce you to some of our education animals.

Q:  Are there hiking trails at the zoo?
A:  The zoo has a short hiking trail that leads to a very scenic overlook of Kingsbury Creek’s waterfalls. Just outside the zoo there is a hiking trail from Fairmont Park, with others nearby. For more information visit the Superior Hiking Trail’s website: http://www.shta.org/Trail/Duluth.php

Q: Can we bike to the zoo?
A:  Yes. We recommend using the Willard Munger State Trail. For more information visit the MN Department of Natural Resources website: http://www.dnr.state.mn.us/state_trails/willard_munger/index.html

Q: Why don’t you have polar bears anymore?
A: On June 20, 2012 the Lake Superior Zoo, along with the rest of the Northland, experienced a devastating flood. The zoo’s Polar Shores exhibit was severely damaged and was subsequently closed. The animals have been relocated to other accredited zoos or are being housed off-exhibit at the zoo.

Q: When will polar bears return to the zoo?
A: At this time, there are no plans to bring polar bears back to the Lake Superior Zoo. The Polar Shores exhibit remains closed and it no longer meets polar bear husbandry standards set forth by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA), the accreditation organization that sets standards that the Lake Superior Zoo has agreed to follow. A new polar bear facility would cost a projected $13 million and no major donors/sponsors/funders have come forward with sufficient interest and money to fund a polar bear exhibit. If they did, the zoo’s priorities could change.

Q: What’s going to happen to the Polar Shores exhibit?
A: The Lake Superior Zoological Society (the non-profit organization that operates the zoo), the City of Duluth (the owners of the zoo) and the community are working together to determine the future vision for this exhibit and for the Lake Superior Zoo.