VISITOR INFORMATION FOR PRIMARY AND SECONDARY SCHOOLS
Hamilton Zoo is open from 9.30am to 4.30pm; last admissions at 3.30pm. If you would like your group to arrive earlier than 9.30am please contact the education team and discuss the options.
We are a LEOTC provider for the Ministry of Education. We offer a discounted rate of $7 per person (students, teachers and accompanying adults) for primary and secondary school learning experiences, available Monday to Friday during the school term. To receive the education rate, payment must be made in one lump sum for the whole group. If not, the standard admission cost will apply. Please note: prices are subject to change.
To qualify for the special LEOTC rate you must:
- book your visit in advance
- identify your learning outcomes
- work with a member of the Zoo’s education team during your visit and
- complete an evaluation form post-visit.
The group total cost must be paid in one amount. Payment can be made by cash, cheque or credit card (we do not accept American Express or Diners Club) or we are able to invoice your school (we require at least four working days advance notice for this option).
Annual memberships, special offers or promotions can not be used in conjunction with an educational visit.
For non-contact (school teacher led) observation in Zoo grounds normal zoo entry rates will apply.
PLANNING YOUR VISIT
The education Team can help you organise your visit to Hamilton Zoo. Please contact us to discuss options to meet your needs and, if you require, organise a teacher pre-visit.
We can assist you in planning your unit. We have a range of resources available. Some of these are available here, however we also have other resources and web pages that we can refer you to for more information on your chosen focus. By contacting the education team we can help you decide what will work best for you.
You may consider attending our ‘Meet the Keeper’ talks. These are free to the public and keepers will talk about specific animals and are available to answer questions. Check out the schedule so you can plan your day around these. Please let the Education Team know if there is a specific 'Meet the Keeper' talk you would like your group to attend. This way we can ensure the keeper is prepared for larger school groups.
Once the education team has received your booking form then we will be able to confirm your booking.
PRIOR TO VISIT
We provide maps at Hamilton Zoo but we do encourage people to use and recycle these. There are map boards situated around the zoo and we suggest that you print off maps if you feel adults require these.
Children 15 years and under must be supervised at all times. Please ensure there will be adequate supervision; refer to your school guidelines for appropriate adult/child ratio.
Be familiar with Hamilton Zoo RAMS. Prior to your visit please discuss with your students and accompanying adults behaviour expectations and organisation while at Hamilton Zoo.
What do you expect them to do on arrival? We do not have the space outside the zoo for groups to meet safely. We therefore encourage groups to immediately gather inside the zoo grounds on arrival. Please ensure that a teacher stops at reception with a break down of your numbers (students in each year level, adults and teachers).
Stay on public paths and boardwalks. These may be slippery or steep.
Stay behind the barriers provided for your safety. Animals do bite!
- Please WALK don't run through the Free-flight aviary as there may be birds on the board walk.
Do not climb or sit on fences or barriers.
No banging on exhibit windows, or shouting at the animals to get their attention as this may frighten the animal.
No feeding the animals – they are on special diets to keep them in good health.
If any object is accidentally dropped into an enclosure please report this to reception staff (e.g. a drink bottle or umbrella). The keeper will be requested to retrieve it where possible.
Whistles, balls, balloons, scooters, skateboards, roller-blades, etc., are not permitted in the Zoo. Whistles are used by Zoo staff in emergencies.
First aid supplies are available at Reception. Most Zoo staff are trained to assist with minor medical problems. If someone has an accident or near-miss a zoo accident pack needs to be completed.
Please have a list of all the adults and children in the group as this will be essential in an emergency (e.g. evacuation of the Zoo) to mark everyone off at the assembly point in the car park. We recommend that you also have noted each adult supervisor’s mobile phone number.
Please encourage children to move quietly at a walking pace around the zoo, keeping together and being considerate of other patrons. Running may frighten the animals, and they may hide.
Upon arrival we ask that one teacher sees the receptionist to provide them with the final numbers - broken down (this is a ministry requirement) by:
- students – by year groups
Your educator will meet you at the Zoo entrance. Rather than gathering in the car park, students may be escorted through while one teacher is at reception.
It takes about 2 hours to get around the zoo.
You are welcome to bring your own food into the Zoo.
There is a temporary food truck operating while a new Zoo Cafe is being built.
Picnic tables – There are picnic tables situated around the zoo. Please ensure that these areas are left tidy and that rubbish and recycling bins are used.
Drinking fountains can be found in the upper zoo and lower zoo picnic areas.
Are located near the entrance (upper zoo) and near the grassed picnic area (lower zoo).