The free-admission National Zoo offers a diverting escape. Particularly during the off-season, when the paths are not cluttered by pushchairs, the zoo offers a perfect (albeit hilly) stroll, away from the bustle of Connecticut Avenue. Tree-shaded paths wind through the margins past the various animals. The stars are two pandas, Mei Xiang and Tian Tian, brought on ten-year loan from China in 2001; their cub Tai Shan was returned to China in 2010. The panda habitat is part of the Asia Trail, which links the habitats of sloth bears, fishing cats, red pandas, clouded leopards, Asian small-clawed otters and a Japanese giant salamander. The zoo has built a new environment for Asian elephants as part of its effort to preserve these endangered animals. The Elephant Trails are large enough to house between eight and ten adults along with their young; they have indoor and outdoor facilities, with features such as pools and sand piles that stimulate natural elephant behaviour.
|Venue name:||National Zoological Park||Contact:|
3001 block of Connecticut Avenue, NW
|Cross street:||at Rock Creek Park|
|Opening hours:||Apr–Oct 10am–6pm daily. Grounds 6am–8pm. Nov–Mar 10am–4.30pm daily. Grounds 6am–6pm|
|Transport:||Woodley Park-Zoo/Adams Morgan Metro|