Lions and tigers and bears, oh my! The famed Los Angeles Zoo and Botanical Gardens, founded in 1966, is located in Los Angeles' historical Griffith Park and is owned and operated by the City of Los Angeles. The zoo works in close partnership with the Greater Los Angeles Zoo Association (GLAZA), a nonprofit organization created in 1963, whose mission is to facilitate wildlife recovery and enrich the human experience through knowledge and awareness of the animal world.
The small urban 113-acre zoo is home to some 1,100 different animals from around the world. In 2002, the Los Angeles Zoo became a certified Botanical Garden with 15 different plant collections and 800 different plant species spread throughout the grounds. The zoo has also gained international acclaim for breeding the rare California Condor, thereby helping to increase the number of condors from the 1980s low of 22 to over 300 today.
Highlights of the Los Angeles Zoo and Botanical Gardens include the Red Ape Rain Forest, the Komodo Dragon, the Sea Life Cliffs, and the Campo Gorilla Reserve exhibits. The zoo also provides several activities and shows including: the World of Birds show, which showcases birds of prey and rare exotic birds from all over the world; the Winnick Family Children's Zoo, a petting zoo that enables visitors to get up close and personal with animals in an area known as Muriel's Ranch; and the Neil Papiano Play Park with animal-themed slides and structures, water misters, a toddler area, and family picnic tables.
- 10am to 5pm daily (although animals are put in for the night at 4pm)
- Adult (ages 13 and up): $13
- Seniors (age 62 and up): $10
- Children (ages 2 to 12): $8
- Children (under 2): Free
- Location: 5333 Zoo Drive Los Angeles, CA
- Phone: 323-644-4200
- Website: www.lazoo.org