As we lived in Dallas for many years, we have visited the Dallas Zoo a fair bit. And truth be told, it always was a bit dated in it’s appearance. But not anymore! The Dallas Zoo has added tons of great new exhibits and looks fantastic now.
This past winter, my family and I had the opportunity to see the Dallas Zoo’s newer exhibits first hand. I was pleasantly surprised at how many great, new things there are to do there…many of which you can ONLY experience at the Dallas Zoo.
Take a look at FIVE Things you MUST do at the Dallas Zoo:
Feed a Giraffe
1. One of the most exciting new exhibits we saw at the Dallas Zoo was the Giants of the Savanna. Here you can see animals that call the Savanna home in their unique but familiar habitat. We really enjoyed the Elephant Talk with a zoologist where we learned about their habits and play. We also were able to see lions training up close.
But our most favorite thing we experienced at the Dallas Zoo was feeding & petting the giraffes. For $5, you can get a handful of lettuce and feed these gentle giants straight from your hand. We were amazed at how they patiently eat the lettuce and allow you to nuzzle them. It was a really cool experience.
Watch the Birds Fly
2. See trained birds fly, swoop, and dive at SOAR, a Festival of Flight. We are big fans of animal encounters and love that more and more zoos are taking the time to teach visitors about their animals. This free show has over 20 different species of birds and is fantastic. You can pick up a ticket to this twice daily (weekdays, 3 times a day on weekends) when you first walk into the Zoo. Don’t miss it!
Ride, Splash, and Learn
3. Let your children learn through hands-on activities at the Lacerte Family Children’s Zoo. Children of all ages enjoy the opportunity to ride a pony on the farm, swap objects found in nature, feed birds, and splash in the cool stream. We especially enjoyed the JCPenny Discovery House, where there were several hands-on displays and activities to try.
See the Animals from Above
4. This one has been around for a while, but our family still enjoys the Monorail Safari in the Wilds of Africa. You can ride comfortably over the animal enclosures while learning all about each animal as the tour guide narrates the ride. See 6 different African habitats on this 20 minute ride, many of which can only be seen this way.
Go Down Under in Texas
5. Meet the only koalas in Texas at the Koala Encounter. I was surprised to hear that these cute and cuddly bears were the only ones in Texas. There are also other fun animals from down under to see here – wallabies, lorikeets, and kookaburras!!
There are tons more fun things to do at the Dallas Zoo. My 10 year old son wanted to spend all day in the Reptile House. We actually were able to watch a rattlesnake have lunch while we were there. It was really cool to walk through the Ghosts of the Bayou exhibit there too.
The Dallas Zoo also features a train and a carousel to ride for a small additional fee.
The Dallas Zoo is not finished remodeling, as they were making a big picnic enclosure while we were there. They are currently celebrating 125 years with 125 Great Reasons to “Do the Zoo” – many more than I have listed here!
Take the opportunity to visit the Dallas Zoo next time you are in town. It is well worth it and with their new additions, moving quickly up the list of Best Zoos in Texas!