It’s all happening at the zoo

The Milwaukee County Zoo, a great place to explore in November


The Milwaukee County Zoo, 10001 Bluemound Rd., is a great place to explore in November. With its park-like setting and 680,000-square-feet of space, it’s easy to physical distance! Zoo buildings (Big Cats, Giraffe, Aquatic & Reptile, Aviary, Elephant Care Center, Dairy Barn, Apes of Africa and Small Mammals) except the primate building are now open, with capacity limits. And since masks are required on zoo grounds, safety is a priority.

 Both zoo first-timers and long-time fans will find amazing new sights.


Opened this summer, the Dohmen Family Foundation Hippo Haven houses the zoo’s two hippopotamus—40-year-old male, Happy, and 50-year-old female, Patti. A 60,000-gallon underwater viewing tank is the centerpiece of the exhibit. Although the regular season for the heated viewing tank is April through October, the exhibit may be open in November when temperatures are in the upper 40s.

     The exhibit includes a beach area that closely resembles a hippo habitat in the wild, with props such as anchored artificial logs.

 Available for photo opps and play in any weather are two custom-made fiberglass hippo sculptures replicating the zoo’s hippos.


Opened last summer, the Milwaukee County Zoo’s elephant exhibit boasts a 1.6-acre outdoor habitat and

 indoor state-of-the-art Elephant Care Center. Elephants Brittany, Ruth and Belle can be viewed roaming freely at the indoor Elephant Care Center or even outside. For elephant caregivers, November temperatures are less of a concern than slippery ice and snow.


Animals to see outside include the polar bear, caribou, elk, snow leopards, otters and seals.

 Families thrill to see the zoo’s six-month-old snow leopard, Milja. It’s been six years since the zoo has had a baby snow leopard, and these animals become most active when it’s cold outside.

     The river otters water playground doesn’t freeze, and they continue their antics year-round.

 The primate building is closed because those animals' genetic makeup makes them more susceptible to Covid-19.



     But the popular outdoor Monkey Island exhibit is open and as entertaining as ever. A moat separates Japanese macaques from visitors, and the expansive layout makes for easy physical distancing.

     These monkeys are adapted to cold weather. With two moms and their babies among the troop, there are plenty of antics that make watching these monkeys hilarious!

     The train and carousel will run if temperatures stay in the upper 40s. It is recommended that people call the zoo to find out if these rides are running.

ZOO DETAILS: The Carousel and Zoo Train need temperatures in the upper 40s to operate. (414) 771-3040.

Limited concessions are available. • Zoo Hours: 9:30am-3pm daily • Winter Admission Rates: $14.25/adults and $11.25/children (3-12). • Parking is $12. • Family Free Days: Nov. 7 and Dec.  5.* •  Frosty Free Week Dec. 26 – Dec. 31.* •  Zoo closed dates: Nov. 26, Dec. 25 and Jan. 1. • For additional info on the Milwaukee County Zoo visit

*Advance Online Reservations Required