School Field Trip Information

North Carolina Zoo offers unique and entertaining learning experiences for children in grades K-12, and for college and university students. By visiting The Zoo, students get to enjoy a fun field trip, while also learning about animals.

  • Only North Carolina Public, Private and Registered Home Schools (K-12) are eligible for free admission benefits at the North Carolina Zoo.
  • Reservations for the 2023 - 2024 school year are available for visit dates between September 6, 2023 and June 7, 2024.
  • Reservations can be made for visits Monday - Friday only. Some dates are unavailable for reservations due to certain holidays and school break periods.
  • Reservations must be made at least 1 week before the visit date.
  • Please print and bring your confirmation letter received via email for entry on the day of your visit. Your confirmation letter is the ticket for your group.
  • Parking and Unloading buses near the entrance is not permitted.
  • Bus parking is located in Lot A and Solar Point in the North America parking lot and Lot 1 in the Africa parking lot.  Buses must park and unload/load in one of these lots. 
  • School field trips require one adult chaperone for every 10 students. Chaperones must remain with and supervise their students at all times.
  • Please be sure to review the Zoo's current operations before planning your trip.
  • Additional guests/parents/chaperones can purchase tickets online in advance or at the gate for Zoo entry. 
  • Students may not carry backpacks inside the Zoo. Backpacks are allowed for teachers and chaperones only.
  • Students may carry a small drawstring bag for their personal belongings if needed.  We also encourage the use of refillable water bottles. 
  • Lunches are not allowed into the Zoo. Schools that bring their own lunches can eat at the picnic areas located outside the Zoo entrance gates.
  • Lunches are available for purchase through the Zoo's Catering Department.  Be sure to have the lunches ordered and paid for 2 weeks prior to the visit date.
  • If you choose to leave the Zoo to eat during your visit be sure to see a representative from admissions to receive a hand stamp before exiting. This hand stamp guarantees re-entry after exiting to the parking lot or picnic areas.
Children on school trip observing the gyser

Need or Want Help Planning a Field Trip to the North Carolina Zoo?

We are here to help. Attend one of our virtual or in-person workshops and learn the ins and outs of bringing a group to the Zoo. We offer a variety of ways to enhance your school's fieldtrip to the Zoo? Make it a powerful learning experience instead of just a fun day out. During this workshop we will share a variety of free (e.g., app with activities designed for every grade level, free virtual program on careers followed by a career quest at the Zoo) and paid (e.g., educational program, animal ambassador encounter) educational opportunities as well as the tips and tricks needed to make sure you have the best field trip ever! This workshop is offered both virtually and in-person. During the in-person option we will get first hand experiences of some of the educational opportunities and walk you through things like checking your group in. If you have any questions about the workshop please email

Please register through SurveyMonkey

Upcoming Dates:

  • Tuesday 8/22/2023 10:00 - 12:00 p.m. - In-person
  • Thursday 9/28/2023 4:00 - 5:00 p.m. - Virtual
  • Wednesday 2/21/2024 4:00 - 5:00 pm - Virtual 

FAQ's for School Field Trips