6 Big Game Safari Parks in the US

Kristi Marcelle
11 September 2013
6 Big Game Safari Parks in the US

Is an African safari on your bucket list but not in your budget? Across the country, safari parks are attracting visitors that want to see the Big Five without making the big trip. Here are six parks where you can take a jeep safari tour, zip-line over elephants, or wake to the lions’ roar from the comfort of your luxury tent—and none require a passport or a second mortgage.

San Diego Zoo Safari Park: Escondido, CA

Theme park meets safari at the San Diego Zoo Safari Park, where educational shows, safaris and activities await. The newest adventure, Flightline Safari, is a 470-foot zip line that soars 160 feet above rhinos and other animals. Wildly popular “Roar & Snore” sleepover safaris including guided hikes, campfires, and meals are scheduled throughout the year.

 

(MORE: Find a parent-recommended, kid-friendly hotel in San Diego.)

 

Lion Country Safari: West Palm Beach, FL

This pioneering drive-through safari in West Palm Beach has been entertaining generations of Floridians and vacationers since 1967. Amusement park rides, boat cruises, water play splash zones, mini-golf and camel rides are the newest additions to the 900-animal park. If you’re looking for a rustic place to stay, The Travel Channel named the adjacent KOA campground one of the top five places to pitch a tent (and not get eaten by lions).

Fossil Rim Wildlife Center: Glenrose, TX

If hand-feeding a giraffe is on your bucket list, purchase a bag of animal feed and head out on the 9.5-mile scenic wildlife drive-through safari or take a guided tour. This non-profit conservation center, located an hour outside of Dallas, specializes in breeding programs for endangered animals. The center offers a variety of safaris, camps and even a nighttime murder mystery tour. Because, you never know, maybe the giraffe did it in the conservatory with the wrench.

 

(MORE: Find more kid-friendly attractions around Dallas.)

 

The Wilds: Cumberland, OH

Ninety miles east of Columbus, this non-profit conservation park sits on 10,000 acres of reclaimed mine land. The Zipline Safari takes you soaring on ten zip lines above more than 350 animals, or you can giddy-up on a horseback safari. The park is open May-October; family and adult camps are offered during summer.

Safari West: Santa Rosa, CA

Who knew that you could find lions and tigers and wildebeests—oh my!—smack in the middle of California Wine Country? Just an hour from San Francisco, the 600-acre Safari West preserve is home to over 600 animals. Cruise through the “ Sonoma Serengeti” in an open-air jeep with a coveted roof-top seat that thrills little adventurers, then stay the night glamping in a luxury tent with bunk beds for the kids and on-site wine tastings for the adults.

Wild Animal Safari: Pine Mountain, GA

At this drive-through safari a 90-minute drive from Atlanta, you can take a safari bus tour, rent a zebra van or drive your own vehicle through the 250-acre park with over 650 animals.

Kristi Marcelle, a California-based freelance writer, contributed this to MiniTime.com.

Related Articles

What to read next

Get This Once-In-A-Lifetime Deal Before It's Gone!

Get 4 Disney Movies For $1 With Membership. See Details. Exclusive Titles, Merchandise, Offers & Discounts. Plus, Free Shipping On Your Initial Order!

Drive part-time, full-time, or anytime with Uber!

As an Uber independent contractor you can get paid to drive your own car! We connect you with riders, and you work when you want to.

Install ADT for $9/Week & Get Free Security Camera

Secure your home for only $9/week and get a FREE wireless camera & security system valued at $850! Get a free quote. ADT Authorized Dealer

“It works. Officers were at my home in minutes."

Built by the leading engineers in the country with revolutionary wireless technology... Engineered to make your home feel like a fortress...