By Erin Hassanzadeh

ST. PAUL, Minn. (WCCO) — Inside the Como Park Zoo & Conservatory in St. Paul, you’ll find a tropical retreat — no passport required.

Sarah Jorgenson just moved back from Texas. She came to the conservatory Tuesday to soak in the Texas-like heat, and soak up her new book.

“I really like [the conservatory], just the nature sounds. I like reading in a park, but like in Minnesota right now, you can’t really do that, so this is a good, like, happy medium,” Jorgenson said.

The warmest spot at the conservatory is inside “Tropical Encounters,” which is about 80 degrees and humid, simulating a South American rainforest. That’s at least 80-degrees warmer than outside at the zoo, where some animals like the arctic fox are loving the chill.

(credit: CBS)

Winds made it feels like minus 12 outside, but reindeer Forest and Abby were just fine. We also spotted Sylvester the ram out for a stroll, and seals were also enjoying the steamy saltwater pool. The wolves were also doing their thing in the frosty air.

Back inside, Chloe the sloth was catching up on her sleep, while the humans caught up on that warm, summer-like feeling.

Online reservations are required to visit the zoo, and there’s a suggested donation of $4 for adults and $2 for children. Click here for more information.

Erin Hassanzadeh