A Hidden Gem in the Twin Cities: Como Zoo and Conservatory

Picture this: It’s the dead of winter, and you’re in Minnesota. The air is so cold, it’s hurting your face.

There are a lot of things to love about winter in Minnesota, but we get it—sometimes you just need to be warm. You want to be immersed in a tropical oasis with humidity and green plants and non-hibernating creatures.

Here’s our insider information: You don’t need to book a plane ticket in order to experience this feeling in the winter. In fact, it’s free.

Yes, free.

All you need to do is visit the Como Zoo and Conservatory.

The zoo is an extraordinary place and is worth a visit any time of year, but the conservatory is a particular treat during the winter months. There’s a koi pond (that never freezes over!) and ample greenery even on the darkest, coldest days. The conservatory even hosts a winter flower show.

Come for the warmth, and stay for the great exhibits—including the zoo, even though much of the zoo is outside. Bring your scarf and hat so you can visit the animals. If they’re hardy enough for the subzero temps, we can be, too!

Edward Rupp