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Oregon Zoo

An elephant at the Oregon Zoo in Portland. (Scenic photo No. mulDA0009a)

An elephant at the Oregon Zoo in Portland. (Oregon State Archives Photo mulDA0009a)

Nestled on 64 acres in the forested hills of Washington Park, the Oregon Zoo is just five minutes west of downtown Portland, easily accessible by public transit and just off Highway 26. Parking charges apply.


The Oregon Zoo is home to more than 2,000 animals from around the world. The Great Northwest area welcomes visitors to the zoo and includes the Eagle Canyon exhibit, which surrounds visitors with the splendors of a natural watershed. Visitors have a fish-eye view of salmon, sturgeon and other native fish. Farther up the trail, magnificent bald eagles appear. Visitors discover the importance of rivers and streams and the interconnectedness of animals and the ecosystem. The Great Northwest also features Condors of the Columbia—the home of an Oregon native brought back from near-extinction: the California condor. The Family Farm—a re-creation of an Oregon Century Farm—is complete with farmhouse and barn, allowing visitors of all ages a chance to interact with sheep, goats and chickens.


The zoo is also the perfect place to learn about animals and explore their habitats around the world. Red Ape Reserve showcases orangutans and white-cheeked gibbons. Predators of the Serengeti houses lions and cheetahs, while the Africa Savanna is home to rhinos, hippos, giraffes and more. The Africa Rainforest features fruit bats, monkeys, crocodiles, and many bright and colorful birds, including flamingos. The Amazon Flooded Forest gives visitors a peek at some of the many animals living in the most diverse ecosystem in the world. At the Asian elephant habitat, visitors can connect with Portland’s elephant family and learn about their care—the Oregon Zoo is recognized worldwide for its Asian elephant program, which has spanned more than 60 years. Other zoo residents include black bears, cougars, polar bears, penguins, Amur tigers and leopards, all living in lush exhibits recreating their natural habitats.


Visitors can hop aboard the Washington Park and Zoo Railway for a ride through the forested hillsides surrounding the zoo. During the summer, visitors may enjoy the four-mile loop or get off at the International Rose Test Garden and take a stroll, enjoying a view of the city, and catch a later train back to the zoo.


The zoo is a service of Metro and is dedicated to its mission of inspiring the community to create a better future for wildlife. Committed to conservation, the zoo is currently working to save endangered California condors, Oregon silverspot and Taylor’s checkerspot butterflies, western pond turtles and Oregon spotted frogs. Other projects focused on saving animals from extinction include studies on Asian elephants, polar bears, orangutans and cheetahs.


Don Moore, PhD, Director
Address: 4001 SW Canyon Rd., Portland 97221
Phone: 503-220-2540
Fax: 503-226-6836