Fort Wayne Children's Zoo Home

Central Zoo

Begin your visit by exploring the heart of the Fort Wayne Children’s Zoo – the Central Zoo!

Farm & Central Zoo Map

Learn More About Central Zoo

Red-tailed Hawk

Turkey Vulture

Hoffmann’s Two-toed Sloth

Domestic Pigeon

Nigerian Dwarf Goat

Flemish Giant Rabbits

Shetland Sheep

Miniature Donkey

Monkey Island
Begin your adventure through the Central Zoo at Monkey Island, home to the capuchin monkeys. Look high and low. This small monkey species loves to leap from the ground to the trees and back again. Stop at the lynx to see if you can spot one of the three that live here at the Zoo. Look carefully, their tan coats help them blend in with their surroundings. Sloooooooowly make your way to the sloth exhibit. There’s no need to rush, the two-toed sloth is not known for his speed.

Coastal Cove
Get a glimpse at the NEW Coastal Cove, the Zoo’s newest mixed species exhibit that houses California sea lions and harbor seals. If you walk by at 11:30 or 3:00, you may even see a training session with a couple of our Zoo Keepers.

Penguin Beach
Continue your journey through the Central Zoo at the African penguins. There are a few penguin chicks out on the beach this season! Look for the difference in feathers. Can you tell which are the adult penguins and which are the chicks? Waddle on over to get a picture with the penguin statues we have next to the African penguin exhibit! Stop at the American alligators to get a peek at the two American alligators we have in our care at the Zoo. As you leave the alligator exhibit, be sure to stop for a magical and majestic photo by the monarch butterfly mural!

Z.O.&O. Railroad
Hop on the Z.O.&O. Railroad, a handcrafted, scaled replica of an original C. P. Huntington locomotive, for a scenic trip around Shoaff Lake.

If you have special needs, we are happy to accommodate you. Please speak to the attendant before boarding your ride.

For your safety on the Z.O.&O. Railroad, please observe these rules:

  • Maximum weight per bench is 430 pounds
  • Guests under 42″ must be accompanied by a supervising companion

Gem Mining
NEW THIS 2024 SEASON, guests are now able to mine for gems! Located just outside the Z.O.&O. Railroad Station, this new experience allows guests to purchase a gem package of their choice and then mine for the gems in the water. You never know what you’ll find, from crystals to fossils. This is a new experience you won’t want to miss!

Little Poof
Sitting just outside the Z.O.&O. Train Station, Little Poof is waiting to welcome all the budding train conductors to climb aboard! Snap a picture of your little conductors as they take off down the imaginary railroad.

Indiana Family Farm
Here at the Fort Wayne Children’s Zoo, we allow peafowl to roam freely throughout the Zoo. Just opposite the Aldabra tortoise exhibit, stop to snap a photo with the stunning peacock statue! End your Zoo trip at the Indiana Family Farm, where guests of all ages can meet a miniature donkey, say hello to sheep and pigs, and even brush a goat!

Goat and Chicken Feedings
Finish your day at the Zoo with a unique encounter with the goats and chickens at the Indiana Family Farm by purchasing feeding tickets! Goat feedings are available for purchase ($2) at every odd hour from 9 AM to 3 PM. Chicken feedings are available for purchase ($2) at every even hour from 10 AM to 2 PM. Purchase your feeding experiences here.

Peacock Café

Located just inside the front gates, Peacock Café gives guests the opportunity to grab a cup of coffee, and other specialty drinks, before beginning their Zoo adventure! Peacock Café proudly serves coffee from The Great Lakes Coffee Roasting Company.

Restrooms in Central Zoo are located just inside the Zoo entrance off to the right, as well as inside the Guest Services building. All restrooms at the Fort Wayne Children’s Zoo are handicap accessible.

Rest Areas
Rest areas are located throughout Central Zoo to allow guests a spot to take a moment in the shade before continuing their adventure through the Zoo. Resting spots include:

  • Peacock Café
  • North American River Otter Exhibit Sitting Area
  • Indiana Family Farm Sitting Area

The Fort Wayne Children’s Zoo is a KultureCity certified Sensory Inclusive Venue. All Fort Wayne Children’s Zoo staff are trained to help guests with sensory needs enjoy their Zoo visit, and KultureCity Sensory Bags can be checked out at the Guest Services building. Discovery Garden is Central Zoo’s designated Quiet Area, where guests can go if they need a break from all the exciting activities throughout the Zoo.

What areas of Central Zoo are wheelchair accessible?

All of Central Zoo, including the restrooms across from Peacock Café, are wheelchair accessible.

What areas of Central Zoo are stroller accessible?

All of Central Zoo is stroller accessible.

Can I bring outside food and beverage to the Fort Wayne Children's Zoo?

Guests are allowed to bring outside food and beverages to the Fort Wayne Children’s Zoo. In Central Zoo, there are picnic tables at Peacock Café where guests can sit down to eat.

Where is the first-aid room?

The First-aid Room is in the Central Zoo near the Guest Services building. There are also first-aid kits located throughout Central Zoo, and all Fort Wayne Children’s Zoo employees are first-aid trained and can assist guests with first-aid needs.

Where can I nurse my child?

Nursing spaces are available in the Guest Services building at the Zoo’s main entrance.

Are there opportunities for meet a Zoo Keeper?

There are daily opportunities to meet some of the Zoo Keepers who work at the Fort Wayne Children’s Zoo. The 2024 Keeper Chat schedule is coming soon!