SAN DIEGO – One of San Diego’s marquee attractions plans to reopen to visitors this weekend.
San Diego Zoo officials said Monday the zoo in Balboa Park and its Safari Park in Escondido will start welcoming visitors on Saturday, an announcement which comes as state public health officials ended all regional stay-at-home orders. Museums, zoos and aquariums were among a host of entities ordered to close when the directive was handed down in early December.
Now with the county reentering the state’s most restrictive purple reopening tier, the zoo will be allowed to reopen as before in an outdoor capacity with modifications.
Both parks are scheduled to reopen in phases starting with outdoor dining only, allowing just 25% capacity in retail shops and permitting a limited number of visitors in the parks at any given time. A number of park features including the Guided Bus Tour, Kangaroo Bus and Skyfari Aerial Tram as well as the Safari Park’s Africa Tram will be unavailable, officials said in a news release.
Upon reopening, the zoo also will require guests to make a reservation ahead of time online.
“The health and safety of our guests, staff members, volunteers, and wildlife remain our highest priorities,” the zoo said in a tweet Monday.
The zoo implemented a reservation system in December ahead of rollout of the stay-at-home order with officials citing the desire to keep visitors safe during the pandemic and in anticipation of a higher demand for tickets.
SeaWorld San Diego will announce a reopening date “very soon,” a spokesperson told FOX 5 Monday.
San Diego Parks said its campgrounds have reopened. Safety measures still apply.
The USS Midway Museum will reopen to the general public on Monday, Feb. 1 following clearance from California and San Diego County officials. In order to manage guest capacity, the Midway will use an online timed-ticketing system. Tickets must be purchased in advance on the museum’s website.