Best Zoos, Wildlife Parks and Petting Zoos Around Atlanta
Get outside and have fun exploring an amazing variety of animal species at these zoos, preserves and wildlife parks. Check websites for pricing, hours, advance reservations and safety guidelines.
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It’s All Happening at the Zoo
With more than 1,000 animals from around the world, including lions, pandas, gorillas, lemurs, orangutans, a southern white rhinoceros and reptiles, Zoo Atlanta is a favorite destination. The African Savanna habitat is home to elephants, giraffes, zebras, ostriches, warthogs and meerkats. Don’t miss out on fun learning opportunities for all ages, including the new Toucan and Friends Wild Encounter, where guests can meet resident bird ambassadors. Adventure Cubs and Twilight Tots introduce children ages 5 and younger to the Zoo’s animals and their habitats. For families with children age 6 and older, exciting and educational after-hours programs include Survival Safari, Twilight Trek and Family Nightcrawlers. It’s an unforgettable experience! Atlanta.
Take a Drive on the Wild Side
Take the Safari Drive Thru tour in your own car for up-close encounters with both native and exotic animals – camels, zebras, warthogs, ostrich, llamas and more. In the park’s zoo area, visitors can go on a guided wildlife walk and have a meet-and-greet with miniature farm animals, a giant tortoise, parakeets and reptiles. Add-on extras include behind-the scenes tours, a reptile encounter and a variety of animal experiences. Cleveland.
With 450 animals on 300 acres, a visit to this park is well worth the trip! Take a 3.5-mile driving tour and see, touch and feed camels, zebras, American bison and more free-roaming animals. Many of the residents will come right up to your car for a greeting. Drive your own car or rent a Zebra Van. Visit the Park Walkabout (included with admission) and see tigers, peacocks, exotic birds, lemurs, alpacas and monkeys in a zoo-like setting. Pine Mountain.
Located an hour north of Atlanta, this family-run farm offers drive-through tours from January through August. It’s home to a variety of classic farm animals as well as a more exotic collection, including zebras, capybaras, reindeer, an emu and kangaroos. Pettit Creek also has the largest camel herd in Georgia – 21 camels! Before your tour, purchase an optional feed bag for the animals. Cartersville.
Visitors to this 40-acre Snellville farm can pet the alpacas, as well as sheep, goats, miniature ponies and potbelly pigs Porky and Piglet. Choose from a private or public tour; each includes a feed bag for the animals. Shop for alpaca fiber clothing and accessories in the Alpaca Shop. Snellville.
You can’t help smiling at an alpaca! At the family-owned L&R farm, each resident has a name and a distinct personality. Schedule an appointment for a farm tour and visit with over 30 of these peaceful creatures. The farm store stocks alpaca-fiber merchandise; check their website for special events, from yoga to painting classes. Douglasville.
Protect and Preserve
The goal of this 25-acre sanctuary is to provide quality care for its residents and educate visitors. Situated in a shady forest along the Yellow River, a one-mile walking trail offers views of vultures, bison, peacocks, lemurs, coyotes, a spider monkey and more. A two-acre enclosed habitat is home to black bears Jiggly, Splashy, Odi and Uper. Bags of lettuce and carrots are available for purchase to feed the deer, goats, rabbits, sheep and alpacas. Lilburn.
Many animals in this preserve were rescued due to being orphaned, illegally owned or in need of a home. Walk the trails and see over 100 exotic and native animals, including white tigers, camels, zebras, birds, wolves, and reptiles. Say hello to Pippi the zedonk (a zebra-donkey cross) and Flash the sloth. The non-profit encourages visitors to bring fresh fruit or produce to help feed its residents. Dahlonega.
This zoo, located in Athens Memorial Park, is managed by Athens-Clarke County Leisure Services. It’s home to a variety of non-releasable native residents, including river otters, a great horned owl, black bear, gopher tortoise, a bald eagle and more. Each animal is an ambassador for its species, educating visitors about wildlife conservation. Admission is free. Athens.
Noah’s Ark is a safe haven for more than 1500 injured, abused or orphaned animals. Take a self-guided tour on the one-mile walking trail and see exotic cats, birds, reptiles and primates, including Baloo the black bear and Leo the African lion. While admission is free, donations to help this non-profit are encouraged. Locust Grove.