While exploring the exhibits that house the zoo's 170 species, be sure to pet the wallabies, greet the orangutans and feed lettuce to the friendly giraffes. Weekends are especially crowded, so the best way to see this can't-miss attraction is to splurge on a premium zoo experience, such as an early morning breakfast with pandas followed by a property tour.
Save money by going on a Wednesday (when the entrance fee is any amount you wish to donate), bringing food and buying a Metro-North Railroad Getaway Package. Families can take advantage of free facilities like a lagoon and an aquarium or pay for special experiences like train rides, zip lining and giraffe feedings.
For a unique zoo adventure, join a guided kayak tour to see Expedition Africa's rhinos and lemurs from the water. The year-round facility features exhibits with red pandas, primates, hippos, penguins and more, plus a 4D movie theater, a carousel and a railroad, among other amenities.
The zoo's naturalistic habitats range from an African savanna to rainforests for South American creatures to a sand-floored barn where zookeepers bury food and toys for elephants. Or, participate in an evening Family Safari Night Hike, which is available on select days and costs $20 per person for visitors ages 5 and older.
And when you need to rest your feet, climb aboard the zoo's steam-powered train, carousel or Safari, which offers a bird's-eye view of the 160-acre park. For 60 years, Busch Gardens Tampa Bay has grown from a brewery and bird park to a major fixture encompassing thrill rides, live shows, animal exhibits and expert veterinary care.
At this Tampa attraction, travelers have access to an array of animal encounters, including the 30-minute Serengeti Safari, which allows visitors 5 and older to hand-feed giraffes from open-air vehicles. Fans of “The Wildlife Docs” series on The CW won't want to miss the 45-minute Animal Care Center walking tour.
This $29 per person experience includes watching park animals receive wellness exams and interacting with the zoo's veterinarians. The Wilds were founded in 1984 when the Central Ohio Coal Company gifted nearly 10,000 acres of surface-mined land to the Columbus Zoo and Aquarium.
Zookeeper and TV host Jack Hanna helped develop the plot of land roughly 75 miles southeast of downtown Columbus into a large educational preserve that complements the main zoo. Adults can prolong their stays by reserving private yurts at the Nomad Ridge camp, where binoculars are available to watch passing animals like rhinos and red-tailed hawks.
In the Louisiana Swamp exhibit, visitors will learn how Cajuns used Native American conservation techniques to create a unique culture and cuisine in a swampy environment. The petting zoo gives little ones the chance to interact with zebus (miniature cows) and giant Algebra tortoises in an African farm setting, while the five-story treehouse at Monkey Hill (New Orleans tallest point) is a great place to burn off some energy.
Mount Rushmore visitors put Bear Country USA (a drive-thru wildlife park) on the tourist map. While exploring this Rapid City attraction from late April through November, you may encounter black bears crossing the road and mountain lions, buffaloes, elk and reindeer roaming in fields.
Before leaving, stretch your legs in the Wildlife Walk area, which features a gift shop and is lined with educational exhibits about foxes, skunks and other small mammals. Native California desert plants line well-marked hiking trails that overlook Eisenhower Peak and the Coachella Valley, while African baobabs, triangle palms and elephant trees grow in the Madagascar Garden.
The zoo also offers educational camel rides, reptile encounters and an endangered species-themed carousel, though some amenities and activities are only available during select months. Big Cat Crossing, one of five Zoo360 trails, features an overhead mesh bridge for lions, pumas, jaguars and more.
Standard admission costs $28 to $37 per person and includes entry to the walk-through Safari World amusement park, with animal presentations, bird and giraffe feedings, a petting zoo, a water playground and more. And if you don't feel like trekking 21 miles east to a hotel in central West Palm Beach, you can pitch a tent at the on-site GOA campground.
Designated areas include an Alaska-inspired region with everything from brown bears to porcupines, a water-filled habitat for Peruvian penguins and a tropical rainforest where jaguars live alongside frogs and birds. At the city's Safari West nature preserve, which sits less than 28 miles northwest of Sonoma, visitors can get an up-close look at nearly 1,000 animals from 90-plus species.
The nearly 100-acre Tucson facility uses invisible fencing in animal habitats, including those for endangered species like Mexican gray wolves and thick-billed parrots. At this wildlife park in downtown Indianapolis, visitors can interact with approximately 1,400 animals while exploring the gardenlike setting and attending a number of special events.
Can't-miss exhibits include Oceans (an aquatic area with an underwater dolphin-viewing dome) and the Simon Skoda International Orangutan Center. Travelers can watch native Alaskan creatures like rare snow leopards, moose and other Arctic species roam the wooded, hilly landscape of Anchorage.
On a chilly Midwestern day, visitors can stay warm while observing otters, monkeys and more in the zoo's Tropical World area. As part of the nonprofit Chicago Zoological Society, the zoo uses a portion of entrance fees to support various global conservation projects, including youth leadership training in Botswana and dolphin tagging in Brazil.
The zoo's busy social calendar includes various conservation fundraisers, such as Pints for Pangolins, Wine for Rhinos and Beers for Bears. Another must-visit exhibit is The Edge, where you can see Amur tigers walking across overhead bridges and from a viewing area with a perforated wall.
Visitors can use an animal map to navigate the park's dirt roads on foot or ride the complimentary shuttle, which stops in four areas. Watch zookeepers prepare special diets, get an up-close look at various critters (during select months) or explore the Enrichment Playground, which is filled with toys similar to those used by the property's animals.
You'll find the action-packed Hermann Memorial Park, where the zoo resides, easy to reach by Eurorail's Red Line from downtown Houston. If there is any question as to what constitutes an eligible project, please email Rob Vernon or call (301) 244-3352.
Top Honors Fossil Rim Wildlife Center, Houston Zoological Gardens, and San Antonio Zoological Gardens & Aquarium for Saltwater's Prairie Chicken Recovery Program When creating this list we considered the zoo’s conservation efforts, the visitor experience, as well the variety of species offered.
Trip Advisor rated this zoo as the best zoo in the world based on millions of reviews and considering the conservation, research, and experience that visitors have, it is, therefore, no surprise it remains at the top of the list. Omaha’s Henry Poorly Zoo is renowned worldwide for its leadership in conservation and research and the remarkable exhibits back these claims up.
Visitors love the tide pool touch tank where they can get up close and personal with sea creatures. Shows, feedings, education, conservation, and research make this the number one zoo in the world.
Animals range from giraffes to gorillas to giant pandas to pavilions full of nocturnal creatures and even a Komodo dragon. Additionally, there are also a ton of dining options, picnic areas, kid’s playgrounds, and behind-the-scenes experiences that will enhance your visit.
The Basel zoo is largely dedicated to its animals, keeping close attention to their diets and behavior. This dedication has led Basel Zoo to become a leader in breeding endangered species such as cheetahs, Indian Rhinos, and okapi.
Popular animal exhibits are rhinos, hippos, apes, cheetahs, okapi, and flamingos. There is plenty of open space for the animals, well-kept clean grounds, and the park isn’t too big which means you can easily walk around the entire zoo.
You will have the opportunity to observe and learn about a variety of species including Amur tigers, snow leopards, and more all the while being able to take in the luscious green Finnish landscape. This is in large part due to both the commitment it has made to developing a long-term conservation strategy for animals in Africa and its focus on research and education.
The Chester Zoo has put a big focus on giraffes and their closest living relatives, the okapi; both of which are largely endangered. Furthermore, about one-fifth of the species here are threatened or endangered and this was, in fact, one of the first zoos to create a scientific research program.
Visitors here will come up close with apes, giant pandas, Asian elephants, big cats, and more. This remarkable zoo is open 364 days of the year, is free to get in, and puts a big emphasis on animal welfare.
The Irwin family has made sure the Australia Zoo follows Steve's’s mission of Conservation through exciting education”. The Australia Zoo offer’s many hands-on experiences from learning how to safely feed kangaroos and wallabies to encountering wombats, tigers, elephants, and so much more.
Furthermore, this impressive zoo also features a state-of-the-art chimpanzee enclosure that has been endorsed by experts such as Jane Goodall. Daily presentations and tours are a large part of the visit to this zoo and there is certainly no shortage of animals to look at and things to learn during a day here.
Today, the zoo allows guests to explore the state-of-the-art exhibits that are designed to simulate the natural environment for its 1,300 animals including many rare and endangered species. The exhibits are designed to reflect the natural habitat of each species which ensures the animals are placed in the best environment.
Don’t worry about walking the entire 210 acres because the zoo offers golf carts that you can rent by the hour. It also happens to be full of amazing architecture as it is located on the grounds of the famous Schönbrunn Palace in Vienna, Austria.
While taking in the scenic grounds, you will have the chance to see giant pandas, monkeys, penguins, elephants, and so much more. This picturesque zoo occupies 37-acres of lavish green landscape and overlooks Column Bay and the Carnelian mountains in North Wales.
You will have the opportunity to witness over 140 species including otters, California sea lions, Humboldt penguins, and more. But above all else, the Welsh Mountain Zoo’s mission is to protect the animals and raise awareness of the world’s impact on wildlife and the environment.
Over the years, the zoo has evolved from an entertainment destination to a mature conservation and education hub. This award-winning zoo believes that we hold a responsibility to protect the world’s precious wildlife and because of this, their team of scientists uses a combination of their existing knowledge as well as new data to determine the most effective conservation actions they need to take.
Further, you’ll also get to see many other popular animals such as lions, giraffes, hippos as well as rare deer and pigs! The San Diego Zoo is known around the world for pioneering the concept of careless, open-air exhibits that help re-create the animal’s natural habitat.
Since the beginning, the zoo has focused much of its efforts on protecting and breeding endangered species, making it the go-to for orphaned animals in need. Recently the Bronx Zoo has been focusing its efforts on making itself more eco-friendly, installing compostable toilets that will help to conserve water.
Visitors will find plenty of big animals including giraffes, lions, bears, and tigers along with monkeys, leopards, and much more. The Singapore Zoo uses a series of moats and glass to enhance both the experience for visitors and to recreate the natural habitats of the animals.
This zoo has invested in rescue and conservation efforts to protect wildlife and the late Steve Irwin (aka the Crocodile Hunter) greatly admired them for their work. The lush rainforest setting that surrounds the entire zoo encourages animals such as free-ranging kangaroos and flying foxes to interact with the public.