December 29, 2014

Palm Beach Zoo: South Florida’s Hidden Gem

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Palm Beach Zoo: South Florida’s Hidden Gem

Disclaimer: I was provided tickets to the zoo in exchange for a review and giveaway. All thoughts and opinions are my own as always! 

I am little hesitant to even tell you all what I’m about tell you. Selfishly, I don’t want to let the best kept secret of South Florida out of the bag! But, I am not that much of a creep, so I am going to fill you in on the amazingness that is the Palm Beach Zoo.

Starting as just a petting zoo back in the 1950’s, the Palm Beach Zoo has flourished and grown to be one of the best small zoo’s in the nation. It’s mission is simple:“ To protect wildlife and wildlife habitat, and to inspire others to value and conserve the natural world” . Palm Beach Zoo does just that – they continue efforts to conserve and sustain.

We had the chance to visit the Palm Beach Zoo recently and after living in South Florida for almost 18 years, this was my first time! I brought my 3 year old niece and daughter with me and the second we stepped foot on the premises, their eyes lit up. Unlike most of the outdoor adventures down here in South Florida, the Palm Beach Zoo is laid out perfectly with gorgeous foliage growing over the paths, covering and shading you from most of the elements. It gets crazy hot down here, so to escape the blazing sun is high on our list of priorities for certain outdoor activities!

PBZTrainFountainCarousel

We began our exploration with a few rides on the carousel and the safari train. The kids of course loved it, and that’s not the only fun activities you can do at the Palm Beach Zoo. For those extra hot days, kids love to run through the water fountain, so be sure to bring a suit and towel and let the kids cool off with a run through the water spouts. If running through the water fountain isn’t your thing, how about feeding the flamingos? Fill up a cup from the food dispenser and get an up close and personal view of the gorgeous pink flamingos, ducks and other birds that inhabit our lovely state of Florida.

PBZFlamingo

The Palm Beach Zoo doesn’t stop there with the up close encounters. They have four different Animal Experiences; come feed & meet Aldabra Tortoises, Black Bears, Sloths and Capybaras. Each experience varies in time from 15-30 minutes which allows you and a group to meet, pet, feed and interact with some of these fabulous animals. We got to experience feeding the Aldabra Tortoises and it was incredible! We were able to pet and feed three of the Aldabra Tortoises some sweet potatoes and leaves. It truly was a memorable experience to see it through the eyes of the little ones. The Zoo Keepers were so friendly and knowledgable, plus they were so great with all the kids! For just an additional fee from your ticket, you could join in on these fun experiences. Check out more the animal experiences here!

PBZAlabraTortoise

Now, I have been to my fair share of zoos, and there has always been one complaint – especially down here in South Florida – most of the animals are never out for us to see. We walked around to all exhibits and actually saw animals out and about. The girls were so excited and as we walked to each, their anticipation grew. There were no animals hiding at the Palm Beach Zoo! They were out in their habitat for us to see them in all their beauty – even the giant Burmese Python. To which my niece gasped – “Florida Snakes are so nice!”. Sure they are….behind glass!

PBZSnakes

The highlight of our day at the Palm Beach Zoo was being able to witness some Zoo history being made. That day was the first day they showed the newest addition to the Palm Beach Zoo family – the Malayian Tiger Habitat exhibit. It took years to create and finally open to the public on December 18, 2014. To hear all the excitement in the employees voices as they came around to look at it was truly awesome. You can see how much each and every person who works there loves what they do, along with the animals.

PBZMalayanTigers

In keeping with sustainability, the Palm Beach Zoo has a zero trash initiative. Every trash station has a spot for both trash and recyclables, all in efforts to help the environment. Even down to their plastic cups at the cafe, which are made from corn and are 100% compostable. Plus, Palm Beach Zoo has their very own coffee, which is USDA Organic, bird-friendly and pretty darn delicious! You could pick up some of it while you are at the zoo.

PBZSustainability

We had the best day exploring the Palm Beach Zoo and one lucky South Florida reader will get to win a family 4 pack of tickets to visit the Palm Beach Zoo for yourself! Thank you to the wonderful crew at the Palm Beach Zoo who is sponsoring this awesome giveaway. It will be running from today, December 29, 2104 til January 7, 2014 at 11:59 p.m.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

We can’t wait to go back and do more exploring at the Palm Beach Zoo! To learn more about the Palm Beach Zoo and all the events that they have going on like Breakfast with Santa, Save the Panthers 5k and Brew at the Zoo (yes, brew as in beer!) check out their site here! Be sure to follow the Palm Beach Zoo on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Youtube, Google+ & Pinterest.

Amanda

Disclaimer: I was provided tickets to the zoo in exchange for a review and giveaway. All thoughts and opinions are my own as always! 

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