Oklahoma City’s zoo rocks with the world’s largest elephant exhibit. Covering almost 10 acres, it’s about twice the size of the closest exhibit. Opened in 2011, the exhibit is one of the reasons Oklahoma City is considered one of the best zoos in the United States.
The six Asian elephants in a large area that challenges them for physical activity. A pool allows the pachyderms room to splash around or relax for a nice soak.
The thing that stood out for us is the boardwalk that visitors take through the exhibit. Located about 20 feet above the exhibit area, it allows an unobstructed view as the elephants move about, play and eat. A viewing section seats about 400 people, so they can watch zoo keepers train the elephants.
While elephants garner a large section of the 119 acres that encompass it, the zoo is home to other interesting attractions. Perhaps the second largest exhibit was the hoofed animals. Led by a few giraffes, the area included Grevy’s zebras grazing nearby. Gazelles, African deer and small Guinea fowl also call the area home.
The Pachyderm Building features Indian rhinoceroses, as well as the endangered Black rhino. Wild birds are also located the building.
Primates have more than three acres of land to traverse in the Great EscApe exhibit. We noticed a couple of young apes playing around, and likely annoying, a few older ones. I can spend a lot of time watching apes as they sit, stroll or play. Their facial expressions resemble humans’, which make me smile.
Great views at the Oklahoma City Zoo
It was a warm day during our visit, so our visit to the large cat section was limited to viewing lions, tigers and cheetahs taking naps and cooling off in the shade.
While the Oklahoma City Zoo has an attractive line-up of animals from other continents, its North American creatures provide an opportunity to learn history and get a close-up view of some of our continent’s wildlife.
Black and brown (grizzly) bears can be found in the Oklahoma Trails area. Bison roam a decently-sized pasture. Other North American animals that can be seen include the bald eagle, river otters and prairie dogs.
A stroll along the zoo’s lake provides a beautiful view of the shoreline, as well as an opportunity to see fish jump out of the water for pellets that you can buy for a quarter. You can also feed a peacock, if you’re lucky.
The Oklahoma City Zoo also features animals from Asia, snakes, lizards, as well as marine animals, such as seals.
We strongly recommend visiting the Oklahoma City Zoo. Plan to spend 2-4 hours at the zoo when you visit, as you’ll want to enjoy everything it offers.
For more information on the zoo, please visit www.okczoo.org.
Disclaimer: Thanks to the Oklahoma City visitors bureau for the complimentary admission, but all opinions and views are ours.