The new Speedwell Foundation Conservation Carousel, located next to Lemur Island and Lion/Tiger Hill, is a welcome and unique addition to the National Zoological Park. It is one of the very few solar-powered carousels in the entire world. A display allows visitors to measure how much energy the panels generate. The carousel features 56 different animals, all created by Carousel Works, the world’s largest manufacturer of carousels. They range from the traditional elephant and giraffe to the more unusual naked mole rat, cuttlefish, blue crab, grasshopper, and some animals I had never even heard of. It was odd to see a hummingbird at least as large as a rhino. My daughters chose to ride a cheetah and a gray seal. The top border of the carousel is decorated with birds from around the world. There are two chariots for those who prefer not to go up and down – one decorated with a kangaroo and another with coral. Around the perimeter are signs with information on the animals. These are divided into four habitats – aquatic, forest, grassland, and desert. Riders under 42” must be accompanied by an adult standing next to them (the adult has to pay too). Rides are $3 each (no discount for FONZ members). Take a spin on the new carousel. Where else can you ride a clam or elephant shrew? The carousel is open April to October from 10am to 6pm and November to March from 10am to 4:30pm. It also runs daily throughout ZooLights. Directions: By Metro take the Red Line to either Woodley Park-Zoo/Adams Morgan or Cleveland Park.

Ages

All Ages

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