There are plenty of fun things to do at the St. Louis Zoo
. One of the newest and most popular is Sea Lion Sound, a 1.5 acre habitat that's home to nearly a dozen California sea lions. Sea Lion Sound has two main areas: the Landing with its large pool and underwater tunnel, and the Arena which is home to the sea lion shows.
Hours and Admission:
Sea Lion Sound is open year-round during regular Zoo hours. The Zoo is open daily from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., with extended hours in the summer. Between Memorial Day and Labor Day, the Zoo is open Monday through Thursday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., and Friday through Sunday from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. Admission to the Zoo and Sea Lion Sound is free, but you do need to buy tickets for the sea lion shows.
The Underwater Tunnel:
The most impressive part of Sea Lion Sound is the 35 foot underwater tunnel that lets you walk right through the habitat. The tunnel is the only one of its kind in North America and offers a unique perspective for watching the sea lions as they swim and play above you. On busy days, you can expect a line to get into the tunnel, but it's certainly worth the wait.
Another interesting thing to do at Sea Lion Sound is to watch during feeding times. Each day at 10 a.m., 12:30 p.m. and 3:30 p.m., zookeepers feed the sea lions in front of the public. You can watch them throw fish and talk about what it takes to care for sea lions in captivity and in the wild.
Sea Lion Show:
During warmer months, you can take in a show at Sea Lion Arena. The arena has more than 800 seats and a 40,000 gallon see-through pool. The sea lions perform tricks and show off their swimming and balancing abilities during the show. Tickets are $4 a person. Children younger that two get in free. Sea lion shows are only offered during warm weather. There are weekend shows in the spring and fall, and daily shows in the summer. For more information on show days and times, see the St. Louis Zoo website
Other Visitor Info:
Sea Lion Sound is located in the center of the Zoo near the Lakeside Cafe. It's easy to get to from both the north and south entrances. The parking lot at the south entrance is bigger, so it's a better bet for parking on busy days. The price to park is $15. There is also free parking available on the streets around the Zoo in Forest Park
and across Highway 40 along Oakland Avenue.