The Seneca Park Zoo is only a small part of the greater 297-acre Seneca Park designed by Frederick Law Olmsted in 1893.
The zoo is open all year long, and is continuously upgrading facilities and adding exhibits. “A Step into Africa,” a 2006 addition, features African Lions and Elephants. “Animals of the Savanna” opened in 2018, featuring Giraffes.
Behind the Zoo, there is a trout pond surrounded by pavilions, a playground and hiking trails that take you up close with the Genesee River. The trails are part of the Genesee Riverway Trail.
A beautiful place to walk in wintertime
The Seneca Park Zoo is open all year. And while many animals prefer to stay comfy-cozy inside or in a den, some species, such as polar bears and Amur tigers, enjoy the long, cold Rochester winters.
Seneca Park Zoo in summertime
Naturally, everything is more active in the non-winter months. The animals spend time outside, there’s more visitors walking about, the Tram is in operation, and there are more events, like Zoo Brew.
Olmsted Trail North
1 mi. (one way)
This trail leads along the river nearly to Lake Ontario, with three optional descents to the riverside. The sign reads,
“Olmsted Landing: A park should be accessible to the poor as well as the rich. It should be the beauty of the fields, the meadow, the prairie, or green pastures, and the still waters. What we want to gain is tranquility and rest to the mind.”
Olmsted Trail South
0.7 mi. (one way)
The bridge is accessed using stairs or ramps on both sides.
The Zoo has a seasonal tram to help transport visitors to the extreme ends of the park, for a small fee each way-$2 for adults and $1 for youth and seniors. It does not go through the zoo.
The tram runs weekends only starting in mid-April, daily Memorial Day through Labor Day, back to weekends only through ZooBoo.
The pathway is primarily downhill from the entrance to the Savanna. I’m betting most people walk through the park then take the tram back to the entrance. There is now a gift shop in the Savanna area where tickets can be purchased.
More information about Seneca Park
Cost: Free for Park, Admission Fee for Zoo (see website for admission fees)
Located in the City of Rochester (get directions)
More information on the Zoo
What do you enjoy most about Seneca Park?
Share your thoughts with us in the comments. Your insight and experience is invaluable!