If you live in the Garden State, you live near one of the top five zoos in the country and the 13th highest ranked zoo in the world. While many might expect that zoo to the be the massive Bronx Zoo in New York or the popular Philadelphia Zoo in Pennsylvania, the world class zoo is actually… Cape May Zoo.
Cape May County Park And Zoo
The rankings were based on thousands of user reviews and this beloved South Jersey gem seems to be a visitor favorite. Guests think so highly of the zoo that its glowing reviews beat out much larger destinations, earning it a TripAdvisor Traveler's Choice Award.
The zoo is home to 550 animals, representing 250 species including the African Lion, Cheetah, Giraffe, Cotton Top Tamarin, Red Panda and Snow Leopard. The zoo is also home to 13 flamingos from Michael Jackson's Neverland Ranch.
The zoo is free and open year-round. It offers a colorful carousel, rock climbing wall, mini-train, honey bee haven and beekeeper presentation, photo booth and birds of prey show.
Treetop Adventure Course
Other amenities include a gift shop and full service dining at Safari Cafe. You'll find more than just hot dogs here with menu items including BBQ Pork Sandwiches, Grilled Chicken Caesar Salad, Funnel Cakes, Fresh Fruit and Ice Cream. A recent addition to the zoo is a treetop adventure course (Tree To Tree Adventure Park). The aerial course is completely safe and lets you explore the lush greenery from a unique perspective. Swing from tree to tree and challenge yourself with obstacles like ladder bridges and climbing nets.
Another thing that makes this zoo so great is its family-friendly programs and events. Past events have included Night Out With The Critters, an immersive charity event, and World Giraffe Day. Upcoming events include Global Tiger Day (July 29th), featuring tiger-themed programs, activities and talks, Yoga at the Zoo (July 31st) and the kid-approved PokemonGO day at the Zoo (August 5th) with prizes and more.
Cape May County Park
The zoo can be found at 707 Route 9 North, Cape May Court House, in the heart of Cape May County Park. Current hours are 10 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.. The zoo is handicap accessible and electric and manual wheel chairs are available for rental. One of my favorite zoo amenities is a private guided tour, just $15 per adult and $10 per child under 12. Guests have the option to add on an animal encounter.