Must-See Zoos in Pennsylvania

Lions and tigers and bears…along with elk, giraffes, gorillas, exotic birds and much more – all can be found at one of Pennsylvania’s many zoos. Year-round zoo experiences throughout the commonwealth help to educate visitors of all ages about animal conservation efforts and provide the chance to see creatures of the wild firsthand. From small community zoos to large, world-renowned sanctuaries, Pennsylvania is home to some of the most unique animal exhibits in the country.


Philadelphia Zoo - Philadelphia and the Countryside


The Philadelphia Zoo is known as “America’s first zoo” and is home to more than 1,300 animals, many of which are rare and endangered. The zoo, fulfilling its mission of conservation, science, education and recreation, supports and engages in conservation efforts to protect endangered species around the world. In 2015, the Philadelphia Zoo is debuting another first: Zoo360 Animal Exploration Trails. These exploration trails are a first-of-its-kind and will consist of three trails – Treetop Trail, Great Ape Trail and Big Cat Crossing. These trails will allow guests to experience the zoo in a whole new way, with animals roaming around them.


Erie Zoo and Botanical Gardens - Pennsylvania’s Great Lakes Region   

The Erie Zoo features everything from lowland gorillas to African waterbirds with special events and activities for the entire family. Go on an African-inspired safari to see cheetahs and rhinos at the Zoo’s Kiboka Outpost, or meet red pandas and orangutans in the Wild Asia exhibit. The Children’s Zoo features special educational programs and even an animal show theater and indoor wildlife carousel.


Claws 'n' Paws Animal Park - Upstate PA   

Lake Ariel
This “zoo in the woods” in the Upstate PA region offers unique hands-on activities for the entire family including a petting zoo where guests can interact with tame deer, lambs and goats. Visitors can meet Twiga, the resident giraffe, or take apples into the parrot aviary to feed the lories. Claws 'n' Paws features more than 120 rare and exotic species of animals, including a white tiger, a black panther and an African lion. The facilities also offer educational programs and demonstrations throughout the day.


Pittsburgh Zoo and PPG Aquarium - Pittsburgh and its Countryside   

Meet elephants, polar bears, gorillas, penguins and more at the Pittsburgh Zoo, which has been educating and entertaining crowds for more than 100 years. Exhibits feature naturalistic habitats, including an Asian Forest and an African Savanna. In 2000, the zoo added the 45,000-square-foot PPG Aquarium, the only public aquarium in the commonwealth, which is home to sharks, eels, penguins, stingrays and much more.


ZooAmerica® - Dutch Country Roads

ZooAmerica® began as The Hershey Zoo in 1916 when Milton S. Hershey opened his private animal collection to the public. Today, the zoo features more than 200 North American animals, including bears, bobcats and lynx. Guests can even take advantage of a special falconry demonstration or naturalist educational sessions. A unique experience for all, the Ocelot Exhibit features animals twice the size of an average house cat and are the only spotted cats remaining in the United States.


Lehigh Valley Zoo - Lehigh Valley

Lehigh Valley Zoo is home to more than 300 animals representing 104 species from African penguins to zebras. The zoo hosts more than 125,000 guests annually and offers hundreds of educational programs, camps for all ages and family-friendly events, making it one of the most vibrant educational and cultural institutions in the Lehigh Valley.


Animaland Zoological Park - Pennsylvania Wilds   

Located near Leonard Harrison State Park in northern Pennsylvania and overlooking the picturesque Pennsylvania Grand Canyon, Animaland Zoological Park is home to more than 200 exotic, wild and domestic animals. The zoo contains 12 acres of exhibits and features animals ranging from monkeys and kangaroos to pygmy goats and even a Siberian tiger!


Elmwood Park Zoo - Philadelphia and the Countryside

Celebrating 90 years as Montgomery County’s premier destination for animal lovers of all ages, the Elmwood Park Zoo features over 300 animals native to North and South America. Through its programs, special events, day camps, “Zoo Snooze” camp outs and more, the zoo aims to foster an appreciation for wildlife that inspires active participation in conservation. This summer the zoo welcomes back the African Giraffes and will allow guests the chance to feed them!


Lake Tobias Wildlife Park - Dutch Country Roads

Established in 1965, Lake Tobias is unique as it is not just a zoo, but it’s also a working farm. In addition to the peacocks, chickens, and guineas roaming freely about the grounds, Lake Tobias also has 50 acres of exhibits and displays including a petting zoo. From African lions and Bengal tigers to American alligators and Burmese pythons, Lake Tobias has a variety of wildlife to observe and enjoy.