We spent a lot of time in Cache Valley this summer, mostly just the two of us, but one of our trips included our whole family. When we were looking for family friendly activities in the area, we found out that Logan has its own zoo, the Willow Park Zoo. One of the mornings of our family vacation, we invited my mom to join us and took the kids to the zoo. After experiencing The Hogle Zoo with a toddler, and spending time at this smaller scale zoo, I've decided that this one is worth a little day trip and a lot more fun for families with young kids.
Where: Willow Park Zoo aka Zootah (419 W 700 S, Logan)
Cost: $4 for adults, $3 for children (ages 2-11)
Zootah isn't a large zoo and doesn't have animals like elephants and giraffes, but there is still quite a bit to see and a lot of hands on experiences for kids. The petting zoo is open daily from 11-12 and 3-4. You can touch a snake or pet llamas and goats. Our toddlers were a little hesitant to get close to the animals, but we were able to get close to the animals with them in our arms. We showed them how kind the animals were and they still got the experience.
When we were paying for admission, we were asked if we wanted to purchase duck food for $1. At that low cost, we decided to go for it, and that dollar was definitely the best spent money of the day. There are multiple places throughout the zoo where you can see ducks and swans. They'd come right up to the fence to get food from us and our kids loved throwing it to them. Feeding the birds took up a large portion of the time that we were at the zoo, but it was worth every minute and every penny spent.
You might not get to see hippos and gorillas at The Willow Park Zoo, but there are a lot of great animals that younger kids will be excited to see. Our youngest loved any bird she got to see and we were especially impressed with the Bald Eagle exhibit. There are a few different types of monkey, a variety of reptiles and some unique mammals, some that I don't think I've seen at bigger zoos in the past.
I loved the animal paw prints painted on the path around the zoo. It was well laid out and easy to make a circle around the park and not worry if you missed seeing any of the animals. The petting zoo and other activities were well advertised and there were signs pointing the way. Our oldest was especially excited by the farm equipment he spotted outside the north side of the zoo.
While we were over by the petting zoo at the start of our visit, my toddler spotted a playground on the other side of the fence and for the rest of our time at the zoo, insisted that he needed to swing. It was getting close to lunch and naps when we got done walking through the park, but we decided to spend some time over at the playground. It was the perfect end to our morning, even if both kids almost fell asleep from the lull of the swing.
We will be making Zootah a family tradition, especially while our kids are young. It's budget friendly and a great place for toddlers to run and use up their energy. The park portion of Willow Park just outside the zoo is shaded by trees and perfect for a picnic and extra play time after you're finished seeing the animals. Don't forget to "splurge" on the duck food, you won't regret it.