General

Lions and Rhinos and Bears… Oh my!

It seems like spring is finally springing! Sure, there’s been a lot of rain, but we’ve also had a few beautiful, sunny days. Last weekend, I took advantage of the balmy 12-degree temperatures and went on a day trip. What better place to fill yourself with the joys of spring than at the beautiful Toronto Zoo?

It’s actually pretty simple to get there on the TTC; just take the Bloor-Danforth subway line all the way East to Kennedy Station and then transfer onto the East 86A Scarborough, which will drop you off right at the front entrance. The trip usually takes just under an hour and a half, but it’s worth it to get out of the hustle and bustle of the city.

General admission is $23, but if you’re going to be around Toronto for the next year, I’d recommend getting a student membership for $60. The zoo is open every day of the year, except for Christmas Day, but I think it’s especially nice at this time of year because it tends to be less busy and the warm-but-not-hot weather is perfect for wandering and exploring.

Pictured: my Health app data

I certainly did a lot of wandering!

I don’t know about you, but sometimes the urban jungle gets a bit overwhelming for me. The zoo is a great place to get some fresh air, take in some sights, and learn something new! It’s the largest zoo in Canada, covering 287 hectares, and it is home to over 5000 animals. There’s always something going on and there are a ton of conservation initiatives to get involved with too!

Of course, there’s another draw this springtime. You may have heard by now that the Toronto Zoo recently welcomed two not-so-giant-yet panda cubs! Their names are Jia Panpan (Canadian Hope) and Jia Yueyue, (Canadian Joy). These two fuzzy little stars already have friends in high places.

Pictured: Justin Trudeau with pandas

OMG!!!! (Picture credit: cbc.ca)

Well, those three are not the only majestic bundles of joy who have been hanging around the zoo lately. There are six-month-old white lion cubs—Gus, Hank, Oliver, and Harrison—who you can visit every weekend. Private Juno the polar bear is just four months old and she has already been recruited as the military’s fluffiest mascot ever. The zoo’s youngest animal is an as-yet-unnamed Indian rhinoceros; he’s just three weeks old!

If you’re not yet convinced that the zoo is the place for you, here are some pictures from my trip:

Pictured: a dramatic turtle

Just look at this dramatic turtle welcoming you!

Pictured: mother and baby rhino

The first rhino born at the zoo in 19 years!

Pictured: Private Juno the polar bear cub

Private Juno!

Pictured: lion couple

#goals

Pictured: view at the zoo

Wide open spaces!

If you’re looking for an animal-themed adventure a little closer to campus, check out Ripley’s Aquarium. They even have a live jazz band on the second Friday night of every month! I got the chance to go during a “Trin Goes To” event last Friday and it went just swimmingly!

Pictured: Jelly fish exhibit at Ripleys

Jams and jellies… Who could ask for more?

What is your favourite urban escape destination? Let me know in the comments below!