Must-See Zoos in Pennsylvania

Lions and tigers and bears…oh my! If your pursuit of happiness takes you to find your favorite animal, then Pennsylvania is the perfect destination! Year-round zoo experiences can be found throughout the Keystone State to educate visitors of all ages about animal conservation efforts and provide the chance to see creatures of the wild firsthand. From small community zoos to large, world-renowned sanctuaries, Pennsylvania is home to some of the most unique animal exhibits in the country.

Philadelphia Zoo - Philadelphia and the Countryside


The region’s leading family destination and one of the area’s foremost conservation organizations, Philadelphia Zoo is home to nearly 1,300 animals, many rare and endangered. Each year, Philadelphia Zoo educates more than 1.2 million visitors about animal and environmental conservation via a first-in-the-world animal travel trail system,. The zoo, fulfilling its mission of conservation, science, education, and recreation, supports and engages in conservation efforts to protect endangered species around the world. The Zoo360 Animal Exploration Trails are the first-of-its-kind and consist of four trails — Treetop Trail, Great Ape Trail, Gorilla Treeway and Big Cat Crossing. These trails allow guests to experience the zoo in a whole new way, with animals roaming around them.

Pittsburgh Zoo and PPG Aquarium - Pittsburgh and its Countryside   


Meet elephants, polar bears, gorillas, and penguins at the Pittsburgh Zoo, which has educated and entertained crowds for more than 100 years. Exhibits feature naturalistic habitats, including an Asian forest and an African savanna. In 2000, the zoo added the 45,000-square-foot PPG Aquarium, the only public aquarium in the commonwealth, which is home to sharks, eels, penguins, and stingrays. Kids ages 2-13 can learn about the importance of wildlife through lessons, animal encounters, tours, songs, and crafts at the Animal Adventures Summer Zoo Camp.

Elmwood Park Zoo - Philadelphia and the Countryside


Elmwood Park Zoo was established in 1924 when a local farmer transferred 16 acres and a small menagerie to the Borough of Norristown. Today, the zoo is owned and operated by the Norristown Zoological Society, a non-profit organization whose mission is to foster an appreciation for wildlife and the environment that will inspire active participation in conservation. Through its programs, special events, day camps, and “Zoo Snooze” camp outs, the zoo aims to foster an appreciation for wildlife that inspires active participation in conservation. This summer the zoo will complete construction on "Majestic Predators", a new series of Jaguar exhibits.

Erie Zoo and Botanical Gardens - Pennsylvania’s Great Lakes Region   


The Erie Zoo features everything from African lions to North American river otters, as well as special events and activities for the entire family. Go on an African-inspired safari to see warthogs and rhinos at the Zoo’s Kiboka Outpost or meet red pandas and orangutans in the Wild Asia exhibit. The Children’s Zoo features special educational programs and even an animal show theater and indoor wildlife carousel.

ZooAmerica® - Dutch Country Roads


ZooAmerica® began as The Hershey Zoo in 1916 when Milton S. Hershey opened his private animal collection to the public. Today, the zoo features more than 200 North American animals, including bears, bobcats, and lynx. Guests can even take advantage of a special falconry demonstration or naturalist educational sessions. A unique experience for all, the Great Southwest Biome features Ocelots that are twice the size of an average house cat and are the only spotted cats remaining in the United States.

Lehigh Valley Zoo - Lehigh Valley


Lehigh Valley Zoo is home to more than 325 animals representing 125 species from African penguins to zebras. The zoo hosts more than 125,000 guests annually and offers hundreds of educational programs, camps for all ages, and family-friendly events, making it one of the most vibrant educational and cultural institutions in the Lehigh Valley.

Claws 'n' Paws Animal Park - Upstate PA

Lake Ariel

This “zoo in the woods” in the Upstate PA region offers unique hands-on activities for the entire family, including a petting zoo where guests can interact with deer, lambs, and goats. Visitors can meet African Tortoises in Turtle Town, dig around for fossils at the Dinosaur Outpost, or take apples into the parrot aviary to feed the lories. Claws 'n' Paws features many rare and exotic species of animals, including a white tiger, a black panther, and an African lion. The facilities also offer educational programs and demonstrations throughout the day.

Lake Tobias Wildlife Park - Dutch Country Roads


Nestled in the quiet countryside, Lake Tobias resounds with the sights and sounds of the jungles and grasslands of six continents. Mammals, reptiles, and birds from around the world can be found here. Established in 1965, Lake Tobias is unique as it is not just a zoo, but it’s also a working farm. In addition to the peacocks, chickens, and guineas roaming freely about the grounds, Lake Tobias also has 50 acres of exhibits and displays including a petting zoo. From African lions and Bengal tigers to American alligators and Burmese pythons, Lake Tobias has a variety of wildlife to observe and enjoy. Safari tours are one of the special attractions at Lake Tobias. Specially designed cruisers take you across 150 acres of rolling land where you see herds of wild and exotic animals from around the world.

Clyde Peeling’s Reptiland - Valleys of the Susquehanna


Clyde Peeling's Reptiland is an AZA-accredited zoo specializing in reptiles and amphibians from around the world! Enjoy modern indoor exhibits of more than 40 species year-round. During warmer months, experience life-size animatronic dinosaurs and hundreds of colorful parakeets with exciting seasonal exhibits. Stunning naturalistic habitats, fun interactive exhibits, live shows, and hands-on animal encounters make Reptiland an educational adventure for the whole family!

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