Updated 2018-Wildlife World Zoo has also done some improvements!
When we last wrote about WWZ , there weren’t as many rides as there are now, plus they have expanded different exhibits including the Rhino Exhibit! We received a membership for Christmas and finally went into the Aquarium! The zoo is so big, it really does take multiple visits to see the whole thing with little ones.
We checked out some of the fish and the predators at WWZ and the aquarium.
And we checked out the sea lion show, and the sea lion even came out of the tank to show the audience what tricks he could do. There was some audience involvement as well. The Sea Lion show area is only open when they are about to have a show, but you can see the sea lions through small port holes in the small ship outside of the aquariums.
I loved that you could see the log flume tunnel through the aquarium. We didn’t see anyone go through, but it was cool to see.
In the Aquarium, there are touch tanks that you can actually feel the backs of the sting rays and some crabs. The sting rays sometimes slide across the side of the tank and do a “wave”, so you might get a little wet!
Crab-it’s not for dinner!
Also new is the Safari Area (pictures coming soon)
Wildlife World Zoo is in Litchfield Park, and is about 10 minutes south of Surprise. It is super easy to get to on Northern Ave (not Northern Parkway) and the 303. You may have driven by it on the 303 multiple times and thought “hmm look at all those tall trees and rides in the middle of nowhere”!
We have played at the park for a while, because of course, we love parks. If you are looking for seating for picnics, this is a good place to stop. There is some seating just a little east of the playground. Unfortunately, it is not shaded. There is some shaded benches, but not with tables. So, if you can give up a table, you can find some benches in the shade. There are also more seating options by the Rhino exhibit (which is near one of the cafes). There is also a cafe way down by the rollercoaster.
This is a very nicely kept park with mulch on the ground. Be wary that there are birds (ducks, geese and others) constantly around it so there may be poop on the ground and they may eat little kid snacks.
Other than this chain link rope climb, the park was fun for my kids. Munchie got it after a while, but the first time he dropped like an anchor. He played along for a second so I could get the picture demonstrating it.
The petting zoo is right next to the park, so we stopped there for a little bit. We found out the hard way that bringing the food into the animals (deer and goats) can make them jump all over you. Feeding them from outside the gate will prevent that. There is also a lot of poop and pee on the ground, so older kids who can watch their step may enjoy this better than the 2 year olds. I’m not a big person on petting zoos (dogs, cats and fish are about my sense of “wild”), so I am a little biased.
There are also “rides” throughout the zoo. Most of these are pretty expensive if more than one person goes on. Here are the costs as of 2/7/15
I know all the prices are justified by the cost of care for the animals, however, we skipped these rides because of my kids ages and the prices. So, I do not have any reviews on these.
There are quite a few bathrooms around the zoo, which is helpful for the age group that we are dealing with (the potty training type). While they aren’t the dirties bathrooms, they do leave a lot to be desired, mostly from the cost of upkeep to the amount of people who probably use them. I would bring a pad to change your child on if you were using the changing tables (which were in every women’s bathroom we went into). Bathrooms are also conveniently located near snack stations. We did bring our own food, which makes it easier and more affordable (oops just read online outside food isn’t really allowed, but no one checked us out to ask!) . Prices for food were similar to amusement park prices.
I won’t show too many pictures of the animals, but if you like birds and monkey like species, they have a lot of them! The kids loved watching the different types jump around and glide through the cages. I’m not a big fan of birds so we didn’t do the bird feeding, but I heard that it is good (if you like that sort of thing). We have also seen the bird show (which is more of an animal and bird show) and the speakers were very energetic and kept the crowd going (2018!).
We got to see the new baby giraffe that was born in December, which was pretty cool. They are born at 6′ tall. Thank goodness I’m not a giraffe!
Another nice thing about this zoo compared to others that I have seen is the observation decks they have to see the animals. You climb up approximately 1.5 stories and can see the animals and the surrounding area.
I also like how shaded it is throughout the zoo. The paths are also extremely wide so if you have children who aren’t good walkers but don’t want to be in a stroller they can toddle around and really not get in everyone’s way.
There is also an aquarium, which is wonderful on hot days and you can even sit in Dillon’s ( the restaurant) and be near the animals. We did not venture in there yet, but plan on doing so on our next visit.
Many of the exhibits have water features in them. They are blocked by fences made out of cut trees. If you have a few little ones, they can drop things in the water features. And you will not be able to reach them without going into these water areas. Munchie dropped a water bottle (one of the reusable ones!) in one of the exhibits that has a “monkey island” as we called it. So, we said goodbye to the reusable Thomas the Tank water bottle as it floated by. I let a staffer know, and she did not seem all that surprised. If it happens, let them know.
The Wildlife World Zoo (that’s a mouthful to say) is really a wonderful place to go. It’s nearby and with the coupons, is pretty reasonable. The kids were super tired out by the end of our time there. Make sure you bring plenty of water. There are machines throughout the park as well as some of the “cafes”, but best to have some with you before you need it. Just don’t let them have the water bottles near the exhibits (DOH!).
16501 W. Northern Ave., Litchfield Park, AZ 85340