Cincinnati June 01, 2018
8 Once-In-A-Lifetime Animal Encounters You Can Have Right Here Around Cincinnati
Everyone loves animals and it’s pretty amazing when you have the opportunity to get up close and interact with them, especially ones that you typically don’t see every day. We are so lucky here in Cincinnati that we can experience a wide variety of animal encounters, each one more unbelievable than the next. Of course, we have the Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Garden and the Newport Aquarium, both of which offer unique interactions with animals, but if you travel just a bit further, there are even more animal adventures to be had. If you’re an animal lover (or you know someone who is) check out these eight once-in-a-lifetime animal encounters that you can have in and around Cincinnati.
1. Giraffe Feeding at the Cincinnati Zoo.
Of course, when you think of animals in Cincinnati, your first thought should definitely be of the Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Garden. You'll see many incredible animals here, and there are also opportunities to interact with them. Giraffe Ridge is an amazing overlook where you can get a great view of these tall giants, and it's also where you can feed them yourself. It only costs a few dollars for two leaves, and you'll get a once-in-a-lifetime chance to be within inches of these beautiful animals.
For more on other animal encounters at the zoo, visit their website
2. Pet and Brush a Goat at the Cincinnati Zoo.
Within the Children's Zoo, one of the most popular spots is the barnyard where you can enter a fenced-in area and hang out with some pretty adorable goats. Here the entire family can see what it's like to be a farmer and interact with, and even brush, these charismatic animals.
For more surprising things you can do in Cincinnati, check out our previous article
3. A Safari at The Wilds.
This encounter may be a day trip, but it's definitely worth the three-hour drive. There are many experiences you can have here, including an overnight stay and zip lining, but their most popular attraction is the daily Open-Air Safari. You can get up close and personal with giraffes, rhinos, and many other rare and endangered animals as they roam in their natural setting. It's an incredible African adventure, just a short drive from Cincinnati.
For more information on The Wilds, check out our previous article
4. Penguin Encounters at the Newport Aquarium.
Photo Courtesy of Beth Niehaus
The Newport Aquarium offers many animal adventures, including walking above a shark-filled tank and sticking your head into a bubble surrounded by stingrays. It's such a fun place for the whole family, and you can make your visit even more exciting with a penguin encounter. These scheduled encounters are held throughout the week and you can purchase your ticket through the Aquarium's website. During the 20-minute experience, you'll learn about these amazing animals, watch them in action up close, and possibly get to touch one!
For more on the Newport Aquarium and how you can spend the night there, check out our previous article
5. Visit Wallabies and other Rare Animals at Horsefeathers Farm.
Horsefeathers Farm is just northeast of Cincinnati in Clarksville and is one of the most unique farms in our area. They are known as a wallaby farm, but they also have other animals to see. You can even check out some fossils!
Learn more about this unique farm and wallaby encounter in our previous article
6. Have a Spa Day with an Elephant at Wilstem Ranch.
Elephants are perhaps the most majestic creatures on the planet, and you can get closer to them than you ever thought possible with just a short drive from Cincinnati. Wilstem Ranch near French Lick West Baden in Indiana has a number of different encounters with their elephants available from March through November. A popular option is to give an elephant a "spa day," which even includes a pedicure for those massive toes!
You can learn even more about this amazing elephant encounter in our previous article
7. Get Up Close and Personal With Exotic Animals at Wildlife in Need, Inc.
Photo Courtesy of Victoria Huffman
Wildlife in Need, Inc. is located in Charlestown, Indiana, near Louisville. It's a quick drive from Cincinnati for unbelievable encounters with animals like sloths, monkeys, otters, foxes, and more. They raise money for these incredible animals while providing an unforgettable experience for their visitors.
Learn more about Wildlife in Need, Inc. through their Facebook page
8. Hang with Wolves at Wolf Creek Habitat.
Wolves are often feared in the wild, and while they can be dangerous, you can respectfully visit them at this wolf rescue and educational center. They are open on weekends and no reservations are necessary to spend time with these mighty animals. Located in Brookville, it's easily a morning trip, and well worth the effort for this one-of-a-kind encounter.
You can find more information on the Wolf Creek Habitat
It’s pretty amazing to think you can interact with elephants, penguins, wolves, giraffes, wallabies, and many other exotic animals right here around Cincinnati. Have you been lucky enough to participate in any of these encounters? Any others we should check out? Let us know in the comments!
And for one more amazing animal encounter that’s located in Kentucky, check out our previous article