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Discover Wildlife and Zoos in Southern California

Make the most of your visit with a day at some of the wildlife destinations and zoos across Southern California. You can spend an entire day at the zoo or aquarium to learn about your favorite zoo animals and enjoy some animal encounters. Make your way to the Aquarium of the Pacific in Long Beach. It’s known as the largest indoor ocean and houses more than 500 species of marine life in 50 exhibits.

You can also make a trip to the Orange County Zoo in Irvine Park. This zoo is home to a variety of animals, including black bears, coyotes, mountain lions, and horned owls. When you’re in Santa Ana, spend an afternoon at the Santa Ana Zoo located on the grounds of Prentice Park. Head off on an adventure near Palm Springs and Palm Desert at the Living Desert Zoo & Gardens. This botanical garden is located in the desert region and features several themed gardens. 

Aquarium of the Pacific

Enjoy an aquatic adventure in California. Visit the Aquarium of the Pacific in Long Beach, just south of Los Angeles. This popular attraction is located on Rainbow Harbor near the Long Beach Convention Center and the permanent home of the original Queen Mary, also a Long Beach attraction.

Known as the world’s largest indoor ocean, the aquarium showcases over 500 species of marine life in over 50 exhibits and habitats. The Pacific Ocean’s three regions are highlight through the aquarium including the Northern Pacific, Tropical Pacific and Southern California/Baja.

Special arrangements can be made for behind-the-scenes tours as well a dive-in encounter for certified divers. Children appreciate the Animal Encounter programs featuring interactive tours with sea lions, sharks or otters.

Orange County Zoo

Visit southern California soon. Be sure to visit the Orange County Zoo, located in the 477 acre Irvine Park in Orange, is home to a wonderful variety of animals. Visitors to the zoo enjoy strolling through the grounds to see the black bears, bald eagles, mountain lions, ocelot, great horned owls, red-tailed hawks, coyotes and turkey vultures.

Children love to visit the petting zoo where they can touch the goats, sheep, pot-bellied pigs and birds. Enjoy your time at the zoo to see these beautiful animals of the Southwestern region of the country. Have fun exploring Orange County.

Living Desert Zoo & Gardens

Previously the Living Desert Museum, the Living Desert Zoo and Gardens is a botanical garden and zoo located in southern California’s desert region. Initially founded in 1970 as a 360-acre wilderness preserve, this public garden and zoo is set between Palm Springs and Palm Desert.

Take home your own piece of the California desert from the Palo Verde Garden Center, or grab a on the Living Desert’s onsite train. Be sure you explore some of the very best the Living Desert Zoo has to offer. See the Upper Colorado Desert Garden, the East Africa Garden, or the Baja Palm Oasis Garden.