If you’re looking for some local fun, the Lehigh Valley zoo is just an hour away from central New Jersey.
It’s a great “staycation” idea, fun for all ages which is why we visited this Labor Day weekend before school starts up. Myself, my two children and my mother enjoyed the day checking out the cool animal exhibits in this on the smaller size zoo.
A perfect size for anyone who might not like zoo’s due to all of the walking involved. We’ve been to very large zoo’s and the smallest zoo’s. This one is right in the middle. This makes for extra special zoo talk activities scheduled throughout the zoo, check the online schedule before your visit to make sure to hit them all!
The LVZ features some large zoo amenities though like Giraffe feedings where you get to be up close and personal with adorable humungous giraffes (they even had a black giraffe when we went!) It’s very affordable at just $4 for up to 3 people. You get 3 pieces of lettuce to feed them and can get some cool pictures!
Not only can you feed Giraffes, but you can buy zoo encounters if you’re in a group. It’s a but more pricey, in the triple digits, but check out their website for more details (I know you can hang out with a sloth!)
Their hours are limited from 10am-4pm, but it is more than enough time to see everything and take your time. They change for the season in November to 11-3pm and back to 10-4pm in April. Parking is free and there is alot of parking space close to the entrance so no need to worry. One thing I must note is that the road to get to the zoo is small, winding and and never-ending. I almost thought we passed it or something because we saw the zoo sign and then kept driving and driving. Eventually we caught a glimpse of the entrance in the distance, but really this is what it looks like from the end of the winding road:
Can you spot it?
We had a blast exploring the exhibits starting with the adorable penguins. They were very active and were swimming and walking, making calling noises and all. I even caught this guy mimicking the poster sign haha!
Next up we went over to look at the Mexican gray wolves. Thet came so close it was amazing! They must have been playing a game with eachother because they kept going up and down the hill one after another back and forth. They apparently now have live feedings though according to signs and the carcus you can see inside of their exhibit so if you don’t want your children to witness this, go ahead to check its clear.
My little wolves were amazed at how close they were and enjoyed seeing how much they resemble our dogs at home.
They have a small but cool amphibian section with the cutest little crocodile.
So.. funny story… we were at the playground area and there is a restroom right near it, so I figured I should go since I didn’t know where the next one was and didn’t want to chance it. The lady in the stall next to me asked if I could hand her toilet paper, so I did and then said I would give her a whole roll for that stall since there was one behind and above me. When I went to look again to get it, I realized I was SURROUNDED by Daddy long legs spiders! Oh my God, talk about horrified! Everywhere I turned I noticed they were there and I hadn’t noticed before. It felt like something from a horror film! Literally 25+ in my bathroom stall alone! 😲😱
I told my mom when I got out and she laughed at me, she noted we are in Pennsylvania, in a wooded area, and it’s humid out what did I expect. I think she was under estimating the amount if spiders in that bathroom though since she didn’t see it herself!
Word to the wise, check for spiders in the stall before popping a squat!
But the playground was fun!
Next we stopped for some dip n dots which were so refreshing on the hot and muggy day and checked on the patio deck for ring tailed lemurs in the trees. We didn’t find any😥
This was such a nice bonding experience for my mom and my sons though. The atmosphere is so nice as well, it really felt perfect.
The snowy owl had just been added to the zoo in April of this year. How adorable is this guy!?!
The are many other exhibits, including the adorable otters, but i don’t want to ruin it all for you. I highly recommend you visit the Lehigh Valley Zoo if you’re looking for a great family day out that won’t break the bank and can be just a few hours long if you want.
For tickets in advance visit Lehigh Valley Zoo online or purchase at the gate any day or time.
They offer birthday party packages too!