There were 20 nominees of safari parks picked by 10 Best editors, and the top 10 winners were determined by popular vote of 10 Best readers. The experts — Debra Erickson (International Zoo Educators Association), Eileen Ogintz (Taking the Kids) and Alan Sironen (Zoo Consultants International) — were chosen based on their knowledge and experience of the industry. So, the results are fair and fact0based. All the wildlife parks are certified by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA). Let’s check who are the winners of best safari parks in the U.S.!
10. The Wilds – Cumberland, Ohio
The Wilds is in the 10th place. In the 9,000-acre park, visitors can see and learn more about endangered species. Certified by AZA, this park offers several safari vehicles that will bring you to explore the park. There are open-air safari vehicle, bicycle, horseback, or zipline. The open-air is the favorite one.
9. African Safari Wildlife Park – Port Clinton, Ohio
There are two options to explore African Safari Wildlife Park. First, you can choose the classic drive-thru safari. The visitors will have the chance to meet and feed the animals including deer, zebras, and bison from the car. The second option is the walk-thru safari. The visitors can observe the animals more since they’re walking as in the traditional zoo.
8. Safari West – Santa Rosa, California
Safari West is a place where you can take a 3-hour riding and walking adventure in the 400-acre preserve. It’s home to 900 animals of many species, including giraffes, zebras, oryx, gazelle, wildebeest, and more. Visitors can also choose to stay the night if they want. The park offers a luxurious safari tent where you’ll fall asleep to the sounds of nocturnal animals.
7. Lion Country Safari – Loxahatchee, Florida
Lion Country Safari was established in 1967 and offers a safari experience with 900 animals. Though it may be far from Africa, this is a great place and the only place where you can drive-through safari in Florida. There are seven sections of the park. The Serengeti Plains is a good place to spot ostriches, wildebeest, and impalas. Another section, Gorongosa Reserve, is a place where you can observe the king of big cats, the lion. To see giraffes and rhinos, you can go to Hwange National Park.
6. B. Bryan Preserve – Point Arena, California
In B. Bryan Preserve, the visitors can take 90 minute tours to see each species closely. This place has a mission to breed and preserve African animals, especially the endangered ones. The animals here include antelope, zebras, giraffes, and kudus. They live and graze freely in this preserve. Since the tour is available by reservation only, don’t forget to reserve before you go.
5. Bearizona – Williams, Arizona
The park is situated on 160 acres of land near the town of Williams. Visitors can take a safari trip through more than three miles of Ponderosa pine forest. They can see North American animals living in their natural habitat. After driving through the forest, visitors can go on foot through Fort Bearizona. There are smaller animals that you can see there. If you want to interact with animals, head to the Bearizona Barnyard petting zoo and learn more about them.
4. San Diego Zoo Safari Park – San Diego
San Diego Zoo Safari Park is a great place to spend the holiday with family. Visitors and their children can see the elephants bathing in a pond or lions basking in the sun. There is a tram which will bring you through 1,800 African-themed acres. If you want a more intimate animal experience, don’t miss the regularly scheduled Animal Encounters. You can interact with the animals and it will be led by park keepers.
3. Fossil Rim Wildlife Center – Glen Rose, Texas
Fossil Rim Wildlife Center is located in the hill country of North Texas. The purpose of this place is to conserve endangered species while giving the visitors a chance to learn about them too. The animals include gazelles, American bison, oryx, deer, black-footed cats, cheetahs, wildebeest, emus, giraffes, kudus, zebras, cranes, wolves, and rhinos. There are two options to explore this place. You can choose to drive your own vehicle or take the guided tour.
2. Lee G. Simmons Wildlife Safari Park – Ashland, Nebraska
Visitors can drive along a 4-mile route and see native North American plant and animal species. This wildlife safari park is home to American elk, bison, waterfowl, raptors and white-tailed deer. At Wolf Canyon, the visitors can get out of their car to see grey wolves and American black bears. But if you prefer to walk, you can walk through the half-acre Eagle Aviary.
1. Colorado Wolf and Wildlife Center – Divide, Colorado
The first winner is Colorado Wolf and Wildlife Center. Certified by AZA, this place has the aim to educate people about the importance of wolves, coyotes, and foxes to the North American ecosystem. Animals that can no longer live in the wild can live in the sanctuary. Visitors can take a guided walking tour to get an up-close view of timber, Arctic and Mexican grey wolves, coyotes, and red and swift foxes.
Originally posted 2017-06-12 05:18:49.