There’s nothing better than bringing your kids to a day at the zoo. It’s something they will love and learn from without even realizing it. If you live in South Florida, there are a lot of options. Here are a few of our favorite South Florida zoos to visit with your kids.
Not only does Jungle Island have tons of animals and plants to see, but the location is also home to Miami’s only private beach. Parrot Cove is the ultimate tropical beach playground with phenomenal views of both Biscayne Bay and the downtown Miami skyline. The cost to visit Parrot Cove is included in Jungle Island admission; however, an all-day pass to use Rainforest Riptide is $15 per person. Rainforest Riptide is a huge water playground with tons of fun for the entire family.
Zoo Miami, which is an exhibit located in Dr. Wilde’s World at Zoo Miami, is an educational experience that teaches children and adults some of the fantastic natural techniques and features of animals that help them survive. Whether about the giraffe's long neck or a cheetah's fast speeds, if your kids participate in the exhibit, they're sure to learn some very cool things about animals.
The Monkey Jungle
The Monkey Jungle is in Miami so you can finally explore the rainforest without leaving South Florida. This tour allows you to get up close and personal with monkeys in their natural habitat, and you can even feed them. The cost is a bit steep at nearly $90 per person but with that comes a first-hand experience that many people feel is worth more than the price of admission.
McCarthy’s Wildlife Sanctuary
McCarthy’s Wildlife Sanctuary in West Palm Beach is one of the least known attractions on our list and, for animal lovers living in South Florida, it’s a hidden gem. The sanctuary houses over 200 species ranging from White Tigers and African Lions to Black Leopards, Ligers, Lynx and the like. You can also enjoy hands-on experiences with parrots, kinkajous, alligators, snakes, and many others. Keep in mind though that you can’t just show up to MacCarthy’s, you need to make an appointment! So plan ahead.
The Zoological Wildlife Foundation
The Zoological Wildlife Foundation is another of Miami’s great zoos. They have over 40 exotic species at their facility, many of which are available for interactive, first-hand, activities. The five-acre zoo houses everything from domestic animals and primates to large predatory birds and mammals.
Some of the most popular attractions among kids are the zoo’s Chimpanzees, Gibbon Apes, Sloths, Lemurs, Owls, Snakes, Anteater, Lions Cub, Tiger Cubs, Ligers, Black Jaguar, and, of course, the Capuchin monkeys – which have gotten especially popular since being featured in the movie “Night At The Museum." If you and your kids are interested in a "private encounter" at the Zoological Wildlife Foundation, make sure to call well in advance.
There you have it, a few of our favorite South Florida zoos to visit with your kids. Don’t hesitate to go and explore all that South Florida has to offer, your kids will be thankful, and you may even end up having some fun yourself.