Zoos In New Jersey

Top 12 Zoos in New Jersey

New Jersey is home to a variety of zoos that offer unique experiences for visitors of all ages. From wildlife conservation centers to animal farms, there is something for everyone to enjoy. Let’s explore the top 12 zoos in New Jersey and discover the key takeaways from each.

Key Takeaways

  • Cape May County Park & Zoo offers free admission and a wide variety of animals to see.
  • Lehigh Valley Zoo provides a fun and educational experience for visitors of all ages.
  • Elmwood Park Zoo is known for its well-cared-for environment and knowledgeable staff.
  • Living Treasures Animal Park features a diverse range of animals including camels, zebras, and water buffalo.
  • Pocono Snake & Animal Farm is a great place for kids to interact with animals like the Alligator Snapping turtle.

1. Cape May County Park & Zoo

1. Cape May County Park & Zoo

The Cape May County Park & Zoo offers an exceptional wildlife experience, sprawling over 85 acres with more than 200 species of animals. Open year-round, except Christmas, visitors can enjoy the sights of mammals, birds, amphibians, and reptiles, totaling around 500 animals.

  • Summer Hours: 10 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.
  • Winter Hours: 10 a.m. – 3:30 p.m. (beginning November 2nd)

Admission and parking are free, making it an accessible destination for all. For those seeking a closer encounter, the zoo provides guided tours and special animal experiences for a fee. Remember, the best times to view the animals are early morning and late afternoon.

A visit to Cape May County Park & Zoo is a delightful experience for nature lovers of all stripes. With its diverse range of species and engaging activities, it’s a place that exceeds expectations and leaves lasting memories.

2. Lehigh Valley Zoo

2. Lehigh Valley Zoo

The Lehigh Valley Zoo is a cherished destination for families and wildlife enthusiasts alike. With 453 reviews praising its friendly staff and well-maintained environment, it’s clear that this zoo offers a delightful experience for visitors of all ages.

The zoo’s layout is designed for a comfortable visit, allowing guests to enjoy the presence of various animals in a relaxing setting. Cleanliness and informative displays are highlighted, ensuring an educational trip.

Here are some key features of the Lehigh Valley Zoo:

  • Knowledgeable staff ready to engage with visitors
  • A variety of animals in well-cared habitats
  • Educational tablets providing valuable information about the wildlife

Supporting this ‘great little zoo’ not only promises a fun day out but also contributes to the conservation efforts and the well-being of the animals housed there.

3. Elmwood Park Zoo

3. Elmwood Park Zoo

Elmwood Park Zoo, located in Norristown, offers a delightful experience for visitors of all ages. The zoo is praised for its well-maintained environment and the knowledgeable, friendly staff. It’s not just a place to see animals; it’s a venue where memories are made, from storybook weddings to engaging educational programs.

Elmwood Park Zoo is the perfect local escape that combines nature’s beauty with family-friendly activities.

Visitors can look forward to a variety of events throughout the year, including:

  • Winterfest Weekend
  • Brunch with Santa
  • Boo at the Zoo
  • Member Appreciation Day

The zoo also provides a unique opportunity for animal lovers to get up close with some of their favorite creatures. With options to purchase approved animal food, guests can enjoy interactive experiences that are both fun and educational.

4. Living Treasures Animal Park

4. Living Treasures Animal Park

Living Treasures Animal Park offers a delightful experience for visitors of all ages. The park is renowned for its interactive encounters with animals, allowing guests to feed and observe a variety of species up close. With an admission fee that includes access to the park and the option to purchase animal feed, families can enjoy a day filled with animal interactions.

Visitors should note that during colder months, some animals may be off-display as they vacation in warmer climates. The park also gets into the festive spirit with Christmas decorations, making December a magical time to visit.

Here’s a quick guide to what you can expect:

  • Admission: Access to all exhibits
  • Animal Feed: Available for purchase
  • Best Time to Visit: December for festive decorations
  • Duration: Spend 2 hours for a full experience

Remember to bring change for the feed machines scattered throughout the park. Whether you’re looking for a quick walk or an extended stay, Living Treasures Animal Park is a small but memorable destination that promises a personal and engaging experience with the animals.

5. Pocono Snake & Animal Farm

5. Pocono Snake & Animal Farm

The Pocono Snake & Animal Farm offers a unique and interactive experience that is perfect for families, especially those with young children. Visitors have the opportunity to feed a variety of animals, including lizards, goats, monkeys, and even a bear, making it an engaging trip for all ages.

The intimate setting of the zoo allows for up-close encounters with the animals, providing an educational and memorable experience.

The farm is not just about observing animals; it’s about connecting with them. This hands-on approach to learning about wildlife is what sets the Pocono Snake & Animal Farm apart.

Here are some highlights visitors can look forward to:

  • Feeding and interacting with diverse species
  • Learning about the care and habits of the animals
  • Enjoying the excitement of children as they discover new creatures

Whether it’s for a birthday celebration or a family outing, the Pocono Snake & Animal Farm is a destination that promises fun and discovery.

6. Land of Little Horses

6. Land of Little Horses

The Land of Little Horses is a unique blend of amusement park and zoo, offering an interactive experience that delights visitors of all ages. Visitors rave about the opportunity to feed the animals, engage in the excitement of pig races, and enjoy entertaining shows featuring the park’s namesake miniature horses.

The charm of this park lies not just in its animal encounters, but also in the joy it brings to families seeking a day full of fun and laughter.

While it may not boast the larger wildlife typically found in traditional zoos, the Land of Little Horses compensates with its intimate and hands-on approach to animal care and visitor engagement. Here’s a quick glimpse of what to expect:

  • Amusement & Theme Park attractions
  • Interactive animal feeding sessions
  • Pig races and horse shows
  • A focus on smaller, domestic animals

Remember, the best experiences are often found in the smallest of packages, and the Land of Little Horses is no exception to this rule.

7. Hartshorne Woods Park

7. Hartshorne Woods Park

Hartshorne Woods Park, nestled just 3.5km from Sea Bright in Monmouth County, is a serene escape for nature lovers and outdoor enthusiasts. Open daily from 09:00, the park offers a unique blend of natural beauty and recreational activities.

Visitors can enjoy the well-maintained trails for hiking, biking, and horseback riding. The park’s rich history is also a draw, with historic military installations that add a touch of the past to the scenic landscape.

Hartshorne Woods Park is a testament to the preservation of natural spaces within New Jersey, providing a peaceful retreat from the hustle and bustle of city life.

While not a traditional zoo, the park’s diverse habitats are home to a variety of wildlife, making it a great spot for birdwatching and nature photography. With a rating of 1.1 based on 46 reviews, it’s clear that visitors appreciate the tranquility and beauty Hartshorne Woods Park has to offer.

8. New Jersey Sea Grant Consortium

8. New Jersey Sea Grant Consortium

The New Jersey Sea Grant Consortium stands as a beacon of educational excellence and environmental stewardship. Located just 11.1km from Sea Bright, this institution is not just a zoo, but a hub for a variety of outdoor activities and learning experiences.

  • Open at 10:00 AM
  • Based on 2 reviews
  • Situated in Middletown, NJ

Visitors can immerse themselves in the natural beauty of the area and engage in enriching activities. The Consortium is a testament to New Jersey’s commitment to preserving its coastal ecosystems and educating the public about marine life.

The New Jersey Sea Grant Consortium is more than a destination; it’s an interactive educational journey that inspires a deeper appreciation for our oceans and coasts.

9. Wildlife Conservation Center of Queens County

9. Wildlife Conservation Center of Queens County

The Wildlife Conservation Center of Queens County, though lacking some of the larger species like elephants and giraffes, remains a cherished spot for families and wildlife enthusiasts. Visitors appreciate the intimate setting and the evident care the staff has for the animals.

Located conveniently near Fara St. and accessible via Metro No. 7 at the 111 Street stop, the center is a testament to the growing importance of conservation in zoological institutions. Since the 1970s, conservation has become a central role for zoos, with the Wildlife Conservation Center contributing to this global effort.

The center is not just a place to see animals; it’s a space where conservation meets education and community engagement.

Visitor Information:

  • Address: 1661 Harding Blvd
  • Contact: 800.652.4143
  • Opening Hours: Opens at 10:00 AM

Despite its smaller size, the center has received positive feedback for its atmosphere and the quality of care provided to its residents. It’s a ’boutique zoo’ that offers a unique experience for all ages.

10. Double Diamond Deer Ranch

10. Double Diamond Deer Ranch

The Double Diamond Deer Ranch offers a unique experience for wildlife enthusiasts and families alike. Visitors can wander through various enclosures, each housing a different group of deer. The layout is designed like a maze, ensuring that even if you don’t spot the deer at first, a little exploration will lead to delightful encounters.

  • Encounter a variety of deer species in their naturalistic habitats.
  • Enjoy the serene atmosphere as you navigate the maze-like pathways.
  • Perfect for a family outing or a peaceful retreat into nature.

The ranch provides an intimate setting where the connection between humans and animals is fostered, making it a memorable visit for all ages.

11. Pohopoco Creek Alpacas

11. Pohopoco Creek Alpacas

Nestled just north of Cape May, Pohopoco Creek Alpacas offers a unique and intimate experience with these charming creatures. Open by appointment only, the farm provides a serene setting where visitors can feed and interact with both adult and baby alpacas.

Fleece and Fun for Everyone! Jersey Shore Alpacas is a small, friendly farm that promises a memorable visit for all ages.

Visitors rave about the personal touch and educational value of the tours, often highlighting the warmth of the guides. The farm also features a shop with a variety of alpaca products, including clothing and toys, as well as a selection of over 20 types of alpaca yarn.

  • Visiting Hours: By appointment only; Closed Sundays
  • Activities: Alpaca interaction, shopping, craft classes
  • Location: Green Creek, near Cape May, NJ

Please remember to check the website for complete schedule information before contacting for appointments. This ensures a smooth planning process for your special encounter with the alpacas.

12. That Fish Place – That Pet Place

12. That Fish Place - That Pet Place

That Fish Place – That Pet Place stands out as a unique destination for aquarium enthusiasts and pet lovers alike. With a focus on aquatic life, visitors can explore a variety of fish and other saltwater creatures, receiving guidance from knowledgeable staff.

This establishment offers an educational experience where one can learn about the intricacies of aquatic ecosystems and the care required for different species.

While the reviews suggest varying experiences with staff expertise, it’s clear that for those passionate about marine life, this place holds a treasure trove of discoveries. It’s a must-visit for anyone looking to dive deeper into the world of aquariums.


In conclusion, New Jersey offers a diverse range of zoos that cater to both locals and tourists. From the Cape May County Park & Zoo to the Lehigh Valley Zoo, each zoo provides a unique experience for visitors of all ages. Whether you are interested in wildlife conservation or simply enjoy observing animals in a natural setting, the top 12 zoos in New Jersey have something for everyone. Plan your next family outing to one of these fantastic zoos and create lasting memories with your loved ones.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is admission free for kids at these zoos?

Some zoos offer free admission for kids, while others may have specific pricing policies. It’s best to check with each zoo individually for their admission details.

Are there any special events or activities for visitors at these zoos?

Many zoos host special events, educational programs, and activities for visitors of all ages. Check the zoo’s website or contact them directly for information on upcoming events.

Do these zoos have conservation programs for endangered species?

Several zoos in New Jersey are actively involved in conservation programs for endangered species. They work to protect and preserve wildlife through various initiatives.

Can visitors interact with the animals at these zoos?

While some zoos offer animal encounters and interactive experiences, others prioritize the safety and well-being of the animals. Check with the zoo staff for information on animal interaction opportunities.

Are there dining options available at these zoos?

Many zoos have on-site cafes, snack bars, or dining facilities where visitors can purchase food and beverages. Some zoos even offer picnic areas for visitors to enjoy their own meals.

Do these zoos offer educational programs for schools and groups?

Several zoos provide educational programs, field trips, and tours for schools and organized groups. Teachers and group leaders can inquire about these opportunities for a unique learning experience.

What are the operating hours of these zoos?

Each zoo has its own operating hours, which may vary depending on the season and day of the week. It’s recommended to check the zoo’s website or contact them directly for their current hours of operation.

Are there any restrictions or guidelines for visitors at these zoos?

Zoos typically have rules and guidelines in place to ensure the safety of visitors and animals. Common restrictions may include no feeding the animals, staying on designated paths, and following staff instructions.

February 14, 2024 10:28 am