Explore Outdoors

The Pacific Northwest is a beautiful place to learn about new plants and animals. Discover an outdoor adventure on Zoo grounds or in Point Defiance Park!

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Geocaching Adventures

See the all-new live animal show Indiana Bones and the Golden Treasure at Wild Wonders Outdoor Theater. As Dr. Bones hunts for the Golden Treasure, you'll learn about geocaching, which combines navigation and good old-fashioned sleuthing skills with the allure of a treasure hunt. Join Zoo staff after each show to search high and low for real geocache treasure!

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Explore the Shore

Ever wonder what it’s like to run a finger over the back of a prickly pink sea star? Or hold a tiny ocean crab in the palm of your hand? Or stroll along the beach at low tide, learning about the animals there and helping catalog them for scientific research? Become a citizen scientist for a day at Owen Beach and learn about the biodiversity of beaches and how to protect them.


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Plant Nature Walks

Have you ever wanted to know how a monkey puzzle tree got its name? Or how to identify a douglas-fir tree by looking at its cones? Or how animals and plants depend on each other? Our Youth Volunteers will introduce you to a few of the amazing plants we have on zoo grounds and will provide basic information about some of the connections between animals and plants.


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Estuary Escapades

What is an estuary and why should you care? Join our Senior Guide youth volunteers throughout the summer to find out! Each week will offer a new activity or craft focusing on a different estuary plant or animal. Participate each week to see the estuary come to life and earn a special prize.


citizen science

Looking for more opportunities to observe animals in nature and contribute to real science research? Check out the Citizen Science projects offered every summer.

Garden Tours

Join our Zoo Horticulturist on an in-depth Garden Tour. Tours start at 10 am on the first Wednesday of every month. Meet at the Pacific Rim Plaza just inside the front gate to join the tour!