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Florida Attractions: Lion Country Safari, an Adventure in Florida
Located in West Palm Beach (Loxahatchee, SE Florida), Lion Country Safari was America’s first drive-through cageless zoo. You travel through the park in your own car and you’re given a CD containing the tour guide’s voice who explains about the animals (there’s over 800 animals!) Rental vehicles are also available, if you don’t want to, or can’t, use your own car.
Your windows must be rolled up at all times for safety. I remember going as a child and back then you were able to roll your windows down and feed the animals (with pellets you had to buy, of course) – I guess it either got too messy or someone got hurt, so they stopped allowing it.
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Are Lions the Kings of the Jungle?
The fact that you can’t feed the animals makes this drive-through safari different than others that you may have been to because it’s less messy and parents aren’t constantly trying to disinfect their kids’ slobbered on hands. You also don’t have the extra expense of the food pellets. I think it’s probably less scary to do this tour for the little ones, too. Mine (3 and 4 years old) absolutely loved it!
Decide for yourself if lions really are the king of the jungle as you watch them romp around and chase one another. Just as impressive are the gazelles, rhinos, water buffalos, giraffes, and more.
If you take your time, it usually takes about an hour and a half to complete the tour.
More Safari Fun
Afterwards, you can stop by Safari World, where you can take a boat ride on the Safari Queen. On the boat tour, you can learn all about the spider monkeys that inhabit the Lake Shanalee islands. You can also choose to do your own paddleboat navigating.
The newest attraction, Safari Splash, has 23 interactive water play areas. You can play a round of mini golf, take a trip through a maze where your brain will be teased, and you can take a ride on a carousel and a Ferris wheel. There’s a Lory feeding aviary as well, where you can interact with the Lories. There’s also a special feeding area where you can feed a giraffe, and there’s sheep and goats in a petting zoo as well. Here’s where you’ll see the frantic hand-disinfecting parents!
Lion Country Safari Info
Everything above is included in the admission price, which is pretty reasonable at $18.50 for kids 3-9, $22.50 for seniors (65+), and $25.50 for ages 10-64 (prices as of this writing, November 2009.) You can go to their website and usually there’s a coupon you can download – I printed out a coupon for $5 off each person in the vehicle, not a bad deal at all!
As with most theme parks and zoos, wheelchair and stroller rentals are available on a first-come-first-served basis. If you go, make sure you bring your camera and binoculars and plan to stay for a while!
We had such a wonderful time….