Looking for a vacation idea? Why not try visiting Michigan zoos?
With a wide variety of animals and activities at each zoo, your family will want to visit them all!
Baker Sanctuary -- Operated by the Michigan Audobon Society, the Baker Sanctuary has been home to 200 bird species and other animals. However, it is most famous as a nesting area for the Greater Sandhill Crane, thousands of which can be seen from September to November.
Belle Isle Nature Zoo -- The revived zoo on Belle Isle Park, Detroit, is an inspired eco-friendly endeavor. There are nature programs scheduled for families on the weekends and field trips for community groups and schools during the week.
The highlight of the Belle Isle Nature Zoo are the fallow deer that visitors can feed, as well as a turtle exhibit and an indoor beehive.
Binder Park Zoo -- One of our family favorites and one of the most expansive zoos in Michigan, Binder Park Zoo near Battle Creek has lots to do!
It is famous for its Wild Africa exhibit, where our kids love to feed the giraffes. There is also Miller's Children's Zoo...where llamas, goats and guinea pigs can be petted. (Kids love this place!)
Children's Zoo -- The Children's Zoo in Celebration Square in Saginaw is obviously a haven for children with a butterfly park, a petting zoo an area where dinosaur bones can be dug up, and train and carousel rides in between different animals. The animals are either tame or wild, with sheep, black-footed penguins, kangaroos, wolves and river otters.
Deer Acres Storybook Amusement Park -- More of an an amusement park than a zoo, the Deer Acres Storybook Amusement Park has a petting zoo as well as characters from Mother Goose's tales and fun rides. In addition to the deer that you can feed, there are monkeys and an alligator that's five feet long.
The Detroit Zoo -- At the Detroit Zoo in Royal Oak and Huntington Woods, you can watch polar bears swim around you in the Arctic Ring of Life, or watch kangaroos and wallabies play in the Australian Outback Adventure. Check out aardvarks and white rhinoceros at the African Grasslands, and, in some seasons, even get to feed the giraffes, Chardo, Ajax and Raspberry. This is one of the top-rated Michigan zoos--don't miss it!
DeYoung Family Zoo -- Located in Wallace, the DeYoung Family Zoo has its own license to breed its own felines, including tigers, leopards and lions.
Other animals found here include Russian bears, Ring-tailed lemurs, coatimundis, wallabies and yak. A popular attraction is Molly the Zedonk, which is half a zebra and half a donkey, who can be found in the petting zoo.
GarLyn Zoological Park -- A spectacular zoo in the forest, Garlyn Zoological Park in Mackinac County features cougars, alligators, otters in a large pool, reindeer, coatimundi, and exotic birds. It also has a petting zoo with pygmy goats and potbellied pigs.
John Ball Zoological Society -- One of the most interactive of the Michigan zoos, this Grand Rapids zoo has farm animal petting corrals, camel rides, walk thru parks, nurse sharks, cownose rays, chimpanzees, and the only Komodo Dragon in Michigan.
Kellogg Bird Sanctuary -- The W.K. Kellogg Bird Sanctuary in Augusta houses several diverse habitats to preserve hundreds of birds, including endangered species from all over the world. You may find trumpeter swans and Canadian geese by the water, and bald eagles, easter screech owls and other birds of prey in large, enclosed atriums.
Potter Park Zoo -- Potter Park Zoo in Lansing houses over 100 species of animals including lions, amur tigers, snow leopards, red pandas, meerkats and penguins.
The zoo also has special events for members, such as Breakfast with the Animals, where humans are served a continental breakfast before getting to watch the keepers distribute food to the different animals.
Seney National Wildlife Refuge -- Known for saving Canada geese from extinction, the Seney National Wildlife Refuge also houses the Strangmoor Bog, which is a National Natural Landmark.
Other animals to be found in the refuge are moose, beavers, river otters, black bears and wolves. Aside from Canada geese, the birds that can be found here include ducks, osprey, trumpeter swans, common loons and bald eagles.
Shiawassee National Wildlife Refuge -- The National Refuge is home to a recorded 277 species of migratory birds, with number as high as 20,000 Canada geese and 30,000 ducks.
To protect the birds and the wildlife, there are several areas closed off from the public, but visitors may see the animals while walking down the designated trails by themselves or with a guided tour.