Zoo Atlanta post-rain


May 19, 2013 by Terumi

zoo atlanta watching panda bear in the rain


One thing I’ve learned about going to zoos is that some of my best days have been on rainy ones.  You tend to linger a little longer at exhibits that are indoors that you might blow past on sunny days, the animals often behave a little differently and there are far fewer two-legged animals wandering around.  So when we saw Atlanta was experiencing some of its worst rains in a while when we were there, we thought the best activity for a Sunday afternoon was the Zoo Atlanta.
It turned out this was a great idea, especially when the rain itself decided to stop.  We pulled into the Zoo Atlanta between meals after a red eye flight from Seattle and actually napped a while in the parking lot.  We were literally in the first row of parking and when we woke up the parking lot was still fairly empty.  We collected ourselves and our rain jackets and headed into the zoo. With our Seattle Woodland Park Zoo membership (you need to have at least a Discovery Passport level for reciprocal benefits) we received half off admission which made it a lot more affordable if we ended up getting totally rained out.

The animals were all out and pretty excited.  There was a lot of red mud and it was fun watching them frolic and get all dirty.  The meerkat exhibit was a lot bigger than the one at our zoo and they were in an outdoor enclosure.  We had a lot of fun watching them run around.  They have the cutest faces.

We also enjoyed seeing the tanuki which is a Japanese animal I remember hearing a lot about growing up but I’ve never seen one in real life.


The pandas were amazing.  I can imagine on busy zoo days there are long lineups to see these lovely creatures.  It was so cool to see how close my guys wanted to get to these endangered animals and I hope they see how important it is to help conserve wildlife through all the animal adventures we do.


I was even very tempted to fork over $ 600 to try and feed them as a family but the hubby gently reminded me about how ridiculously expensive that was and I stuck to watching them through the glass instead.  (They certainly looked like they were enjoying their bamboo meal anyways.)


The gorilla exhibit was also very fascinating with lots of room for the gorillas to roam and I think a short story from the language arts curriculum I used to teach talked about Willie B, a famous gorilla from this zoo.  It was neat to see this place in real life and make that connection.  I wonder if any of my old students have come here and remembered that story too.


The boys enjoyed the train ride and it was a nice ending to a great, crowd-free day at the zoo.


Of course, I’m still obsessed about feeding a panda, but I might be tempted to try and feed the Komodo dragon next time if we get to visit again.  It’s a lot more reasonable than feeding the panda and I can’t imagine how you do it because I thought they’re so poisonous!


  1. andrea says:

    You would be surprised, we have never had to wait to see the pandas and we go all the time as members! It is not a great zoo, there are definitely better across the US, but it is still a favorite of my kids 🙂

    • Terumi says:

      You are seriously lucky to have pandas and it’s good to know that it’s not so busy to see them:) I think they were my favorites. At our zoo we love visiting the penguins.

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