Animal Parks

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 National Zoological Gardens of South Africa  in Pretoria Central

National Zoological Gardens of South Africa

Animal Park in Pretoria Central

The largest zoo in South Africa, the National Zoological Gardens of South Africa also is proudly associated with the National Research Foundation. In addition to the zoo, there is an aquarium and reptile park. Children and organised groups are most welcome. Special tours can also be arranged. The cafeteria and restaurant has a wide range of food offerings, and there is ample parking. Pop in for a visit; open all week from 8:30 to 16:30.

1000 Hills Bird Park in Bothas Hill

1000 Hills Bird Park

Animal Park in Bothas Hill

The 1000 Hills Bird Park offers an enchanting experience with rare and exotic feathered friends. The riotous chorus of calls, colourful plumage and character of these birds is a magnet for kids and adults alike. Visitors can admire their spectacular paint-box colouring and quirky antics, either from outside contained aviaries or strolling in walk-through aviaries, landscaped gardens and paddocks. An exciting new feature is the 150-metre zip slide. There is a lovely coffee shop on the premises, Christine’s Eatery. We also sell antique furniture. Open Tuesday to Sunday 9h30 to 15h30.

Addo Raptor and Reptile Centre in Addo Elephant National Park

Addo Raptor and Reptile Centre

Animal Park in Addo Elephant National Park

Cuddle a snake, count all 64 teeth of a Nile crocodile and get up close to a sky predator. Emphatically not a zoo, the Addo Raptor and Reptile Centre is a rehabilitation and education facility providing a home and veterinary care for rescued birds of prey and reptiles. Daily live shows and guided tours allow visitors to come face to face with the venomous Cape Cobra and numerous other deadly African snakes. A large component of their work is educating authorities, the public, retailers and young folk. The focus is to create a better understanding and awareness of these misunderstood and largely misaligned creatures. Some of the animals and birds were rescued from the pet trade or are injured and not able to be returned to the wild. Others are sourced from reputable reptile breeders. +27 (0) 82 332 3499 Opening hours: Tuesday to Sunday 09:00 - 18:00 Feeding tours: Tuesday to Sunday 18:00 (bookings are essential).

Adventures With Elephants in Bela Bela (Warmbaths)

Adventures With Elephants

Animal Park in Bela Bela (Warmbaths)

Ready for a mind-blowing experience with elephants in Bela Bela? More than the usual 'touch and feed' elephant experience; Adventures With Elephants provide thrilling hands-on interactions for kids and adults with their wonderfully tame elephants. Learn more about elephants and witness their intelligence, compassionate nature and delight in interacting with their human companions. Friendly, experienced and qualified elephant handlers share their in-depth knowledge and passion for their charges. Choose experiences ranging from Swims on the Elephants, Elephants Interactions, Elephant-back Safaris, Starlight Safaris or tailor-made activities including weddings, teambuilding, corporate functions and filming. Adventures With Elephants is located on a stunning wildlife reserve situated just an hour and a half drive north from Pretoria, adjacent to Zebula Country Club. +27 (0) 14 734 7700 adventures@zebula.co.za www.adventureswithelephants.co.za

African Bird of Prey Sanctuary in Camperdown

African Bird of Prey Sanctuary

Animal Park in Camperdown

Home to eleven of the twelve owl species, five of the eight vulture species and numerous magnificent raptors found in Southern Africa, the African Bird of Prey Sanctuary is well worth a visit. Dedicated to conserving indigenous raptors, the haven is also a base for continuing research, breeding and rehabilitation projects for birds of prey, mostly run ‘behind the scenes’. There is also a large selection of captive-bred or ‘non-releasable rehabilitation’ birds. These feathered friends can be viewed in their ‘micro-environment’ visitors keen to discover more about South Africa’s beautiful aerial predators. Specially trained birds wow spectators with their daily flight displays, given to educate and facilitate awareness of effective conservation of our environment and its creatures. These demonstrations allow the winged beauties themselves to become both teachers and ambassadors for their wild counterparts, giving the audience a first-hand experience of these rare and elusive birds. Open Tuesday to Sunday 09:00 – 16:00. Closed on Christmas Day and during the Comrades Marathon. Flying Display Times: weekdays (except Mondays) 10:30, weekends and public holidays 10:30 and 15:00. 'Gobble and Squabble' Vulture Feeding Sessions: weekends 12:00 (phone and confirm should this be your primary reason for visiting). +27 (0) 31 785 4382

African Dawn in Thornhill

African Dawn

Animal Park in Thornhill

African Dawn is set in a tranquil valley. This beautiful bird and wildlife sanctuary features an endangered cat breeding program and rehabilitation centre. The on-site restaurant offers good meals. Open daily 09:00 - 17:00.

Agatha Crocodile Ranch in Tzaneen

Agatha Crocodile Ranch

Animal Park in Tzaneen

Cuddle a baby crocodile and count all 68 teeth If you’re feeling brave you could even feed the big toothy predators. Situated on a scenic avocado farm outside Tzaneen, Agatha Crocodile Ranch is a definitely worth a visit. On offer are adventurous daily tours, an opportunity to touch a baby crocodile and also to feed the enormous adults. Tours include a fascinating talk about the behaviour, conservation and breeding of the Nile crocodile, followed by a feeding show and guided tour of the breeding dam and enclosures. Who’s your daddy? Of all the 220 Nile crocodiles on the ranch, Rufus is the biggest at 4.2 meters long and is probably 49 years old. Daily tours and feeding shows are between 09:00 – 16:00, Monday to Sunday. Tours last one and a half hours and promise lots of thrills. Agatha Crocodile Ranch also features a local art gallery and curio shop. +27 (0)15 307 4398

Agra Bear Rescue Facility in Agra

Agra Bear Rescue Facility

Animal Park in Agra

Situated inside the Sur Sarovar Bird Sanctuary is the Agra Bear Rescue Center, established by Wildlife SOS to rehabilitate and home numerous sloth bears. Open daily from sunrise to sunset.

Amanzimtoti Bird Sanctuary in Amanzimtoti

Amanzimtoti Bird Sanctuary

Animal Park in Amanzimtoti

Also known as the Umdoni Bird Park, the Amanzimtoti Bird Sanctuary is well worth a visit. A large expanse of shimmering water is flanked by rolling lawns and lush plantings on the one end and indigenous forests on the other. Picnic spots and pleasant 30 minute self-guided trails meanders through the forest. The sanctuary is a haven for birdlife and visitors have the chance of spotting many of the 150 bird species including resident spurwing geese, white faced duck, greenback heron, giant kingfisher, brown-hooded kingfisher and hamerkop. Look out for Narina trogons and the endangered spotted ground-thrush. Rare blue duiker and Cape clawless otter also frequent the park. +27 (0) 31 903 7498 Umdoni Road, Amanzimtoti.

Bali Bird Park in Bali

Bali Bird Park

Animal Park in Bali

Home to one of the world's largest collection of Birds of Paradise, Indonesian parrots and hundreds of rare exotic birds, the Bali Bird Park is a must see when visiting the Ubud area. Wander through lush tropical greenery and misty aviaries where birds fly freely in the rainforest setting.

Bali Elephant Safari Park in Ubud

Bali Elephant Safari Park

Animal Park in Ubud

Experience interacting with Bali's majestic elephants and go on a sightseeing trip upon the back of one of these peaceful giants. Touch and feed the elephants, watch their playful bathing routine, and watch live educational shows.

Bali Safari and Marine Park in Batubulan

Bali Safari and Marine Park

Animal Park in Batubulan

Home to many remarkable animals including rare species such as the Komodo, Sumatran tiger and orangutan, the Bali Safari & Marine Park is worth a visit. Here you can join an elephant back safari, interact with some of the animals, lunch at the Tsavo Lion restaurant or watch the dazzling Bali Agung show at the high-tech Bali Theatre.

Bambelela Wildlife Care in Bela Bela (Warmbaths)

Bambelela Wildlife Care

Animal Park in Bela Bela (Warmbaths)

Bambelela offers two and a half hour guided tours offering in-depth knowledge and first-hand experiences about hand-raising wild animals and primates. Some of the animals can be touched and there are great photo opportunities. Orphaned and injured African animals are cared for with the aim of rehabilitating them back into the wild. Bambelela are working on being officially recognized as a Vervet Monkey Sanctuary in the Waterberg. Tours are by appointment only. Cost per adult is R100 and R50 for kids (under 4 years free).

Bayworld Oceanarium in Humewood

Bayworld Oceanarium

Animal Park in Humewood

Although Bayworld Oceanarium’s two dolphins, Dumisa and Domino, have winged it off to Hong Kong, the aquarium remains one of the star attractions in Nelson Mandela Bay. Situated in the heart of the Port Elizabeth beachfront, Bayworld continually dishes up a feast of education and entertainment to thousands of visitors each year. Kids love the little colony of rescued Cape fur and Sub Antarctic seals. These web-footed friends provide an up-close experience, giving visitors a chance to see them swimming and feeding. Interactions with their trainers and related stories present their amazing adaptations to the aquatic environment. The African and rock-hopper penguins never fail to amuse with their awkward waddling on land but never fail to impress with their exceptional agility in the water. Be thrilled by the adult ragged-tooth sharks displaying jagged jaws of eating tools as they cruise around the circular tank. There’s lots to see but don’t miss the tiny Knysna seahorses and the wily octopus. Open 09:00 – 16:30 every day of the year, except on Christmas Day, 25 December.

Bayworld Snake Park in Humewood

Bayworld Snake Park

Animal Park in Humewood

Fascinating but fearsome to some folk, reptiles are always a hit with kids. The Bayworld Snake Park has been around since 1919 and is home to numerous reptiles, many of which are indigenous to the Nelson Mandela Bay area. The slithery and scaly collection includes the longest species of snake in the world, the deadliest snake in Africa and a cunning snake that pretends to be dead so as to avoid being attacked. There are also some of the common species which you might find in your back garden while staying in the Bay. Informative signs help you identify the snakes so if you do happen to meet one of them, you’ll know whether it is dangerous or not. Along with the amazing snakes, you will also be able to see lizards, crocodiles, tortoises and terrapins. Open 09:00 – 16:30 every day of the year, except on Christmas Day, 25 December.