Palm Beach Zoo

If you are planning a West Palm Beach family vacation, a visit to the Palm Beach Zoo is always worth adding to the agenda. Open every day of the year, save for Christmas and Thanksgiving, this excellent zoo can be enjoyed regardless of the season. The animals definitely steal the show at the Palm Beach Zoo, but there are other things to enjoy when you're not taking in the animal exhibits. For kids, the Interactive Fountain is bound to please, and a relaxing go around on the Carousel is usually part of the plan for kids and adults alike. When you need a break from all the fun at this attractive zoo in West Palm Beach, heading to the full-service café is always an option. Not too big and not too small, the Palm Beach Zoo can fill hours on end without wearing you out, and it could hardly be easier to get to.  

Twenty three acres of lush tropical grounds comprise the Palm Beach Zoo, which can be found off I-95 just southeast of the Palm Beach Airport. Since the zoo is actually found in West Palm Beach, it is also often referred to as the West Palm Beach Zoo. Whatever you call it, this zoo is worth a visit. Birds, mammals, invertebrates, fish, amphibians, and reptiles figure among the animals that you can view during your visit to this quality zoo in West Palm Beach, and you'll be happy to know that all attempts are made to provide natural habitats for them. Upon entering the West Palm Beach Zoo, you can veer right and start your day off at the Reptile House. You can also take the path on the left and head west to check out the Komodo dragons and white alligators. Regardless of which way you head upon arrival, making the rounds is easy thanks to the zoo's relatively small size.

There are too many animals to list when it comes to the Palm Beach Zoo, and these animals hail from all corners of the globe. Among the most popular animals that call the zoo home figure jaguars, eagles, tigers, alligators, panthers, and black bears. Other creatures that you can expect to see on your visit include monkeys, kangaroos, emus, tortoises, and giant anteaters. Many of the animals at the zoo in West Palm Beach are located in special exhibition areas, the most impressive of which is arguably the Tropics of the Americas Exhibit. You'll enjoy a slice of Central and South America at this impressive exhibit, which, among other things, features recreations of Mayan pyramids and a general rainforest setting. It's almost like going to Mexico, Guatemala, or Belize.

On a visit to the West Palm Beach Zoo, many visitors break to watch the "Wings Over Water" show, which as its name implies, revolves around birds. These daily performances are fun and informative, as is the zoo's Summer Zoo Camp Program, which gives kids the opportunity to enjoy things such as up-close animal encounters. Education programs that cater to all ages are on offer at the zoo in West Palm Beach, so adults can learn a lot as well.

The Palm Beach Zoo opens at 9 a.m. and closes at 5 p.m. The last entry tickets are sold at 4:15, though you're encouraged to get here earlier so that you can tour the zoo at a leisurely pace. Zoo members get in free at the Palm Beach Zoo, while adults and anyone over the age of three will have to pay an admission fee. The fees are more than fair, thanks to the high quality of the West Palm Beach Zoo, and special group rates are available for groups of fifteen or more. Seniors age 60 and over will also enjoy discount admission prices, as will children. Should you need, wheelchairs and strollers are available for an extra fee.

As a side note, the Palm Beach Zoo requires that children under twelve must be accompanied by an adult at all times. Thankfully, accompanying adults are likely to have just as much fun as the kids at this superb small zoo. Don't forget about Lion Country Safari if you're interested in seeing some other fascinating animals on your West Palm Beach vacation.

Image: Keith Lovett
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