Audubon Zoo

6500 Magazine Street
New Orleans LA 70118
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Tucked away in Uptown New Orleans, Audubon Zoo offers visitors of all ages an opportunity to see a menagerie of animals in their natural habitat. Expect to see typical zoo animals like elephants and bears and some Louisiana favorites like the alligator and nutria. Over two dozen attractions and exhibits await visitors to this expansive wildlife oasis that also hosts numerous festivals and special events year-round.

Best and worst time to go to Audubon Zoo
A favorite destination for visitors and locals alike, to get the best Audubon experience visit on weekday afternoons when crowds are thinner. Avoid going to the zoo during peak school field trip times, typically weekday mornings October through May.

Must see/do at Audubon Zoo
Learn about Cajun culture and see a live alligator feeding at the hugely popular Louisiana Swamp Exhibit. Head over to Cool Zoo splash park, the perfect place to chill during the "so- hot- I -could- fry- an-egg- on- the- sidewalk" days in the Big Easy. Make sure you hop aboard the Swamp Train for a behind the scenes narrated tour that winds through the zoo, stopping at three locations to disperse and retrieve passengers.

Admission to Audubon Zoo
You can expect to pay about $20 for general admissions to the zoo with discounts for seniors and children. Some attractions, like the Cool Zoo, Swamp Train and Dinosaur World, require additional fees. For about $15 you can purchase a POP (Pay one Price) Wristband, that allows unlimited admission to all of the paid attractions.

Parking at Audubon Zoo
The zoo offers ample free parking and can usually accommodate the normal flow of visitors during daily operations. During major events, if the paved lot is full, visitors are usually directed to park on several grassy spots on the property. There is also plenty of street parking available in front of the zoo on Magazine Street.

Public Transportation to Audubon Zoo
The zoo is easily accessible by taking the historic St. Charles Avenue Streetcar, where you can enjoy a breathtaking tour of the beautiful mansions along the route. In addition, three buses provide service to the zoo. Both the streetcar and bus stops are within a comfortable walking distance to the main entrance.

Food at Audubon Zoo
There's no shortage of food at the Audubon Zoo including several concession stands, quick snack options and three cafes sprinkled throughout the property. You'll pay about $5 for a snack and for about $10, you can have a decent lunch. Sit outside on the wooden deck overlooking the swamp at the Cypress Knee Cafe, located in the Louisiana Swamp area, and enjoy New Orleans-style cuisine or classic, kid-friendly favorites like burgers, hot dogs and fries. Be sure to stop by the Roman Candy wagon, a New Orleans gooey, taffy tradition since 1915.

Insider tip for visitors to the Audubon Zoo
If you're visiting during Mother's Day, the "Soul Queen of New Orleans", Grammy winner Irma Thomas, hosts an annual Mother's Day extravaganza, with good food, good music and free admissions for all mothers.

Author's bio: Myra Faye Turner writes from New Orleans and frequently visits the zoo with her adorable son, Tyler.