Picnic Areas Update
Picnic areas adjacent to the Africa entrance are closed for the season.
Host your next special occasion at the North Carolina Zoo! The beautiful, natural settings of our picnic areas enhance gatherings from 15 to 3,000 people. In addition to being a spectacular tourist attraction, the Zoo is an excellent place to host a group activity or event. Our picnic areas are available for almost any group activity and event, from birthday parties to company outings to family reunions. The picnic areas are available for rent on a first-come, first-served basis. Call 800.488.0444, ext 7700 or 336.879.7700 to discuss pricing if you are interested in renting one of these locations. Zoo staff is available to assist you Monday through Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. ET.
Enhance your event or group activity with our many catering options. Check out our catering menus or school lunches for guests of all ages and organize an unforgettable event at our Zoo’s picnic areas.
Create lifelong memories and celebrate your child’s special birthday with a fun and educational party at the Zoo.
Picnic Areas Available to Rent
Africa picnic areas
Overlooking Africa Lake and near the entrance to Africa, the peaceful, natural area we fondly call Hippo Beach showcases nearby hippo statues and accommodates as many as 75 guests. Half-day rentals (11:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. or 3:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m.) or full-day rentals (9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.) are available. Picnic tables and restrooms (ADA compliant) on site. Additional table and chair rentals available. Minimum 15 guests required for on-site catering.
Also overlooking Africa Lake and near the entrance to Africa, is the Lakeside picnic area. Lakeside provides gorgeous, tranquil views of nearby wildlife that serve as a beautiful tourist attraction, and can accommodate up to 150 guests. It has 14 large picnic tables, seven of which are covered. Half-day rentals (11:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. or 3:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m.) or full-day rentals (9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.) are available. Restrooms (ADA compliant) are a short walk away. Additional table and chair rentals available. A minimum of 15 guests are required for on-site catering.
Once an old homestead, Oak Hill offers the perfect setting for an old-fashioned picnic, large enough to comfortably host as many as 3,000 guests. Only full-day rentals (9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.) are available. Tents, tables and chairs may also be rented. Restrooms (ADA compliant) are nearby.
North America picnic areas
Beautifully landscaped and an eco-friendly tourist attraction, Solar Pointe rests at the south end of the North America parking lot, easily accessible to the North America Plaza. It consists of three pavilions -- Green, Yellow and Blue -- that are named for the color pad on each pavilion's roof. Combined, these 9,600 square feet of solar collectors can generate as much as 104 kilowatts per hour of electricity. This rental location has a smoke-free designation and is versatile in its use and setup. The pavilions can be rented for $500 each or the entire complex for a daily rental of $1,250. Each pad has at least 10 picnic tables available, additional table and chair rentals available upon request. A minimum of 15 guests are required for on-site catering. Restrooms (ADA compliant) on site.