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Adventure Aquarium - Camden, NJ
This amazing place used to be known as the Camden Aquarium and used to be called the “brown” aquarium because it was so dull. Not so any more. Go there.  Now. While located in the struggling town of Camden, NJ it is easy to follow signs from the Ben Franklin Bridge in Philadelphia and the route is direct and on wide well marked roads - there is also a large outdoor parking lot just for the Aquarium. They are open 7 days from 9:30 to 5, admission is $16.95 for adults, $13.95 for 2-11, under 2 are free. An additional $5 gets you on a Spongebob 4-D ride described as an hilarious and zany adventure but no kids in arms or less than 3’ tall.  For $165 you can actually swim with the sharks - could be a very cool Father’s Day present. This place is a bit expensive but so much fun you will want to go back so consider the annual passport - a $125 family explorer pass covers 2 adults and up to 4 children.   Somehow aquariums must have tons of rules and timed admissions so visit the web site and talk to someone who has been there before for some pointers. None of these prices includes the 7% NJ sales tax and parking is an additional $10.

Baltimore Aquarium
No real reason for the drive south now that we have Adventure Aquarium so close - but if you must, here is their web site.

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National Zoo - Washington DC
Truly an American treasure - the National Zoo is fantastic and worth the 2 hour drive.  Free admission - now that’s good use of those tax dollars. Even the web site is worth a look around as it is easy to navigate and full of fun things.  Where else can your kids adopt a panda?

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Brandywine Zoo - Wilmington
A wonderful little zoo whos best attribute is being small enough but fun enough to go all the time - consider an annual pass .

Siberian tigers, otters, kappibara and that jaguar spotted running around north Wilmington a few years ago all call the Brandywine Zoo home.  Open 7 days a week all year from 10-4, admission is $4 for adults, $2 for seniors and kids 4-11, 3 and under are free.  An annual Household membership is $45 for 2 adults and 4 kids under age 18 and includes 4 guess passes.  Parking is free.
Click here for the calendar of events.
This link has maps and directions.

Phildalphia Zoo
The oldest zoo in America is open 7 days a week 10-5 from March to November and 10-4 from December through February.  

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To make it confusing the ticket prices are $16.95 adult, $13.95 ages 2-11 and free under 2 from April 1 to October 31 with no mention of the cost the other times of year. The Zooballoon is $10 additional on weekends and $5 on weekdays for ages 2-adult. Parking is $10.  Once inside the zoo there are additional charges for animal rides, the swan boats and several other activities.  As with most zoos, the food is of the “fast” variety and nothing healthy was apparent but there are picnic areas and you are allowed to bring your own food.  Stroller rentals also available $7 single, $9 double. 
Click here for the zoo’s Kids Club
Here are the maps and directions
And the upcoming events