Which Is Best: Detroit Zoo Or Roscommon Zoo. A Guide To Which Is The Best Zoo In Michigan, USA

Immerse yourself in an exploration of Michigan's brilliant zoos - Detroit Zoo, famed for its diverse array of species and conservation initiatives and Roscommon Zoo, a smaller, more intimate setting showcasing a unique selection of animals - perfect for families with toddlers.

Uncover the distinct features of each, from accessibility to pricing, all while taking a leisurely virtual stroll through their wild landscapes!

Which Is Best: Detroit Zoo Or Roscommon Zoo. A Guide To Which Is The Best Zoo In Michigan, USA

At A Glance

In the state of Michigan, USA, you’ll find two notable zoos, each offering distinctive experiences.

The Detroit Zoo, located in Royal Oak, is a 125-acre expanse teeming with a variety of 245 different species, including tigers, giraffes, and penguins.

A haven for conservation and educational activities, this large zoo offers disability access, provides family fun, and can take 2-3 hours on average to explore.

But its breath of activities does come at a slightly higher cost than its counterpart with the price for a family of 4 averaging $84.

On the other hand, the Roscommon Zoo, despite its smaller size (20 acres) and being home to fewer species (120), including tigers, llamas, and kangaroos, offers an equally compelling experience.

This independent zoo is perfect for an afternoon out with toddlers or older children, with a visit typically lasting 1.5 hours.

While disability access might be a challenge due to its grass and gravel paths, it compensates with free parking and a lower price for a family of 4, averaging $54.

Both zoos encourage visitors to bring their own food and drink, and while personal pets aren’t allowed, service animals are welcomed.


Both Detroit and Roscommon Zoos, located in the state of Michigan, offer unique environments for animal lovers.

When it comes to the size, Detroit Zoo considerably outmeasures its counterpart in Roscommon with a vast expanse of 125 acres, as compared to Roscommon’s more compact 20 acres.

This substantial size difference is appropriately reflected in the average time needed to fully experience each zoo.

Visitors in Detroit zoo should prepare for a 2-3 hour walk to see all the attractions, whereas a tour of Roscommon Zoo can be neatly wrapped up in about an hour and a half.

Despite their size differences, both offer an array of sights and experiences sure to delight families and individuals alike.

More About Detroit Zoo

About Detroit Zoo

Size (acres) 125
Time To Walk Around 2-3 Hours
Adult Price $14-23
Child Price $12-19
Infant Price Free Under 2 Years Old
Price For Family Of 4 $84
Parking $8
Number Of Animals 245 species
Can Bring Your Own Food? Yes

Information from https://detroitzoo.org/


When looking at prices, Detroit Zoo and Roscommon Zoo offer quite different pricing structures.

An adult ticket at Detroit Zoo ranges from $14-23, while at Roscommon Zoo it’s a flat rate of $15.

The price of a child’s ticket at Detroit Zoo is between $12-19, while at Roscommon Zoo, it’s a set price of $12.

Concession tickets are identically priced at both places, ranging from $12-19 at the Detroit Zoo, and is $12 (for seniors/military) at Roscommon Zoo.

Both zoos offer free entry for children under 2.

However, the overall family outing expenses differ.

For an average family of 4, visiting the Detroit Zoo comes to approximately $84, whereas a visit to Roscommon Zoo will cost around $54, making Roscommon Zoo a more economical option for family outings.

The cost of an average family of 4 at Detroit Zoo is $84 compared to 54 at Roscommon Zoo.

When comparing the range of animals between Detroit Zoo and Roscommon Zoo, it is evident that while both provide opportunities to see rare and exotic creatures, Detroit Zoo boasts a significantly larger portfolio.

Home to an impressive array of 245 species including tigers, giraffes, bears, penguins, lions, kangaroos, camels, and zebras it is a haven for wildlife enthusiasts.

On the other hand, Roscommon Zoo, albeit smaller, provides an intimate setting to view 120 animal species which include tigers, llamas, and kangaroos.

While both zoos house tigers and kangaroos, the Detroit Zoo takes pride in a wider collection of big mammals such as giraffes and lions, which are not found at Roscommon Zoo.

However, with creatures like llamas, Roscommon Zoo also has its unique features that set it apart.

Overall, Detroit Zoo offers visitors a chance to see a more diverse set of animals, thanks to its large size and expansive creature collection. <div class=”overview” markdown=”1”id=”wyntk-roscommon-zoo”>

More About Roscommon Zoo

About Roscommon Zoo

Size (acres) 20
Time To Walk Around 1.5 Hours
Adult Price $15
Child Price $12
Infant Price Free Under 2 Years Old
Price For Family Of 4 $54
Parking Free
Number Of Animals 120
Can Bring Your Own Food? Yes

Information from https://www.roscommonzoo.com/



Both the Detroit Zoo and Roscommon Zoo have made efforts to ensure their facilities are accessible to disabled visitors, however, the nature of the walkways differ significantly.

At Detroit Zoo, the paths are a combination of paved, gravel, and woodchip surfaces, with some areas being hilly or sloped which may present challenges for those with mobility issues.

In contrast, Roscommon Zoo’s pathways predominantly consist of grass and gravel.

The relative lack of solid and smooth surfaces makes it particularly difficult for wheelchair access.

Both zoos ensure the legal right to access for service animals despite banning pet dogs.

It should be noted that neither zoo is accessible by public transport, therefore private vehicles or alternatives are required for visitation.

Overall, while both zoos offer disability access, the facilities at Detroit Zoo could be considered more suitable for individuals with mobility restrictions or wheelchair users compared to Roscommon Zoo.

Pefect For

Both the Detroit Zoo and the Roscommon Zoo located in the state of Michigan offer fantastic experiences for family outings, but are catered towards different stages of family life.

The spacious, 125-acre Detroit Zoo, with its larger variety of highlighted animals and steeper walkways, is ideal for families with older children who are eager to learn about wildlife conservation and education.

The terrain may prove too challenging for toddlers or prams, but older children will be thrilled to encounter a broad range of species, including tigers, giraffes, and penguins.

Alternatively, the Roscommon Zoo offers an intimate, 20-acre setting that is distinctly fitting for young families with toddlers.

Though it has a smaller array of animals, Roscommon Zoo’s informal ambience and manageable grass and gravel paths make the experience less overwhelming for the youngest zoo-goers, simultaneously providing a leisurely afternoon out for the parents.

It is important to note that although both zoos promote disabled access, the steeper, varied grounds of the Detroit Zoo and the mainly grass and gravel paths of the Roscommon Zoo may be difficult for wheelchair users to navigate.


In conclusion, both the Detroit Zoo and Roscommon Zoo offer unique experiences for their visitors.

The Detroit Zoo, being larger and housing a more diverse range of species, provides an immersive journey through the world of wildlife with its conservation and educational programs.

It is best suited for families with older children, but everyone will sure appreciate sights such as giraffes, bears, and penguins.

Yet, the zoo may present challenges to those with disabilities due to its sloping and hilly areas.

On the other hand, Roscommon Zoo, though smaller, allows a close-up interaction with animals like tigers and llamas in a more compact space.

The zoo is a great choice for an afternoon family outing, particularly for families with toddlers.

However, its grass and gravel paths may be a bit difficult for wheelchair access.

Overall, both zoos have their merits and make for delightful and educational trips whether you’re a passionate animal lover, a family looking for a fun day out, or someone simply seeking connection with nature.

Whichever zoo you choose to visit, ensure to plan ahead, considering both transportation and accessibility, to ensure the best possible experience.

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