Discovery Days day camps

Interested in camp but not sure you're ready for a full week? Discovery Days at the zoo offer a chace for campers to dip their toes in the water. Oregon Zoo Camps offer unique and engaging experiences to connect kids with nature. Campers explore little-known areas of the zoo, meet animals face to face and leave inspired to care for the natural world. Each camp includes activities and experiences connected to the day's theme and is rounded out with games, songs, stories and snacks. Campers may attend one day or several days but please note that camps with the same title do not change throughout the summer.

Looking for a full week of camp? See full week options here or check out the camp FAQs.

Registration will open in mid April


Wild Waterways
Monday, July 20 or August 31, 2020

Flamingoes, otters, seals, penguins and all life depend on water and its many forms. From rivers and swamps to oceans and lakes, discover how water has shaped life and this wonderful world.  As you tour the waterways of the zoo, discover our brand new art exhibition, Washed Ashore—art made out of marine debris. Campers will round out their Discovery Day experience by watching the harbor seals get a special treat.

Half day morning camp (4 yrs-K): 8:30 a.m.-11:30 a.m.
$35 per child (10% discount for zoo members)


Full days camps (K-8th grade): 8:30 a.m.-3:30 p.m.
$65 per child (10% discount for zoo members)


Predator Prowl
Tuesday, July 21 or September 1, 2020

Meet hunters of the wild! Predators use many clever tricks and powerful adaptations to find food. In this Discovery Day experience, campers learn about the lives of predators, from tigers and lions to snakes and eagles. Take a look at clever and resourceful predator and prey animals, and see predators of the Serengeti use their adaptations on treats and toys.

Half day morning camp (4 yrs-K): 8:30 a.m.-11:30 a.m.
$35 per child (10% discount for zoo members)


Full days camps (K-8th grade): 8:30 a.m.-3:30 p.m.
$65 per child (10% discount for zoo members)


Nature Ninjas
Wednesday, July 22 or September 2, 2020

How do animals glide effortlessly through nature barely being noticed or seen?  Camouflage, sneaking and shadowing are just some of the ways animals ‘blend’ into nature. Become a nature ninja and discover how animals stay hidden in plain sight.  Discover the sly secrets of the world around you in this Discovery Day, and watch black bears get a treat or toy.

Half day morning camp (4 yrs-K): 8:30 a.m.-11:30 a.m.
$35 per child (10% discount for zoo members)


Full days camps (K-8th grade): 8:30 a.m.-3:30 p.m.
$65 per child (10% discount for zoo members)


Extraordinary Elephants
Thursday, June 11, July 23 or September 3, 2020

Explore Elephant Lands, our extraordinary home for the zoo's largest citizens. See how the elephants live in their habitat and discover all the ways we keep them active and engaged. Observe a special elephant enrichment experience on this perfect pachyderm Discovery Day.

Half day morning camp (4 yrs-K): 8:30 a.m.-11:30 a.m.
$35 per child (10% discount for zoo members)


Full days camps (K-8th grade): 8:30 a.m.-3:30 p.m.
$65 per child (10% discount for zoo members)


Playful Primates
Friday, June 12, July 24 or September 4, 2020

Leaping lemurs! This day is more than just monkeying around. Discover all the playful primates throughout the zoo and learn how amazing apes survive out in the wild, and how humans can help. Watch chimpanzees, other apes and monkeys interact with treats and toys during this experience as well.

Half day morning camp (4 yrs-K): 8:30 a.m.-11:30 a.m.
$35 per child (10% discount for zoo members)


Full days camps (K-8th grade): 8:30 a.m.-3:30 p.m.
$65 per child (10% discount for zoo members)


Lunch and snacks

Snacks are included in all camps. Lunch menus change daily. Vegetarian options are included but we are unable to accommodate other dietary restrictions. Possible entrée items include: hot dogs, corndogs, pizza or chicken nuggets. All meals include fruit, carrot sticks and a dessert. The Oregon Zoo cannot guarantee allergen-free food. If your child has any food allergies or dietary restrictions, please pack your own snacks and lunches.

Lunch is not available for half-day camps (children four years through entering kindergarten) and must be registered for in advance. Lunch is not available to add on at camp.

Discovery Days lunch fees
$8 per day (not available for 4 yr-K half day camp)


Early and late care

Children are supervised in a classroom with a variety of animal-themed, free-choice learning activities. Pre-registration is required. Capacity for Early and Late Care is limited so please note that it may not be possible to add extended care after your initial registration. Late care is not available for half-day camps.

Early Care: Monday–Friday, 7:30 a.m.–8:10 a.m.
$5 per day

Late Care: Monday–Friday, 3:30 p.m.–6:00 p.m.
$12 per day


Camp groups

Campers are grouped by the following grades:

  • 4 yrs-entering kindergarten (half day mornings only)
  • entering kindergarten
  • entering 1st grade
  • entering 2-3rd grade
  • entering 4-5th grade
  • entering 6-8th grade
Counselor to student ratios are one to six for kindergarten and younger, one to eight for first and second grade, one to 10 for third through eighth grade. At no time is any child left unsupervised or alone with a single counselor.

Cancellation policy

Refunds, minus a 10% administrative fee, will be made only if your cancellation is received before June 1, 2020. After June a, 75% refunds will be given if cancellation is made at least ten business days before the start of the camp session. No partial refunds will be given for missed camp days.

Waiting lists are compiled for all full camps. Please contact the zoo's Education Office to be placed on a waitlist.


Questions? Contact the Education Office.