Make unforgettable memories at the Gulf Breeze Zoo, home to more than 800 animals from around the world. You can hand-feed giraffes, visit the free-flight Australian aviary, or take a guided Safari Train ride through the 30-acre African preserve.
By VISIT FLORIDA
A wild adventure awaits at the award-winning Gulf Breeze Zoo. Visitors can take a guided tour, participate in animal feedings, or simply go for a stroll along the elevated boardwalk.
Located less than 20 miles outside of Pensacola, Gulf Breeze Zoo also offers activities for all ages. In addition to the encounters everyone is bound to have just by walking through the zoo, there are plenty of organized attractions as well.
The Gulf Breeze Zoo's residents include a family of six orangutans, moved here from other facilities, Recent births include a reticulated giraffe and a baby warthog. The Gulf Breeze Zoo often is selected as a new home for animals based on the facility’s high standards, dedication to conservation, and large natural habitats.
Things to do at the Gulf Breeze Zoo
The zoo is home to more than 800 animals from around the world. There are countless ways to make memories, like hand-feeding giraffes, interacting with animals in the interactive petting area, joining an alligator feeding or taking selfies in the free flight Australian aviary. A guided Safari Train ride through the 30-acre African preserve features rhinos, hippos, Western lowland gorillas, and orangutans.
Here are a few of the most popular attractions at the Gulf Breeze Zoo:
- Petting farm: Feed and pet goats, pigs, sheep, llamas and more farmyard favorites.
- Giraffe feeding: Get close as the tall mammals eat romaine leaves from your palms.
- Budgie adventure aviary: Feed these gentle, colorful birds inside the free flight aviary.
- Safari express train: This train ride offers close-up views of gorillas, Nile hippos, rhinos, deer, antelope, and zebras that roam free on the zoo’s 30-acre preserve.
- Elevated boardwalk: Walk along the zoo’s elevated boardwalk to see roaming herds of antelope, deer, zebra, and rhino, and catch a great view of the gorillas on their island habitats.
- Zookeeper presentations: Zookeepers share their favorite stories and provide information about the animals they care for in this educational talk.
- Free flight aviary: Budgies (Australian parakeets) perch on visitors' hands, hats, heads and shoes as they nibble treat sticks.
The Gulf Breeze Zoo collaborates with other zoos and field experts to support wildlife conservation through public education, captive breeding programs, habitat preservation, and providing financial aid and assistance to projects in the wild.
The Gulf Breeze Zoo has provided aid in more than 25 countries around the globe. Funding for conservation programs are made possible through the continued support of zoo guests. Conservation is fundamental in daily operations and visitors are encouraged to join in making a difference.
When You Go...
What: Gulf Breeze Zoo
Where: 5701 Gulf Breeze Parkway (10 miles east of Gulf Breeze and 19 miles west of Fort Walton Beach)
Hours: Open daily beginning at 9 a.m.; closing time varies by season. Open 363 days a year. (Closed Thanksgiving and Christmas Day.) Admission gates close one hour before zoo closing.
Don't miss: A custom C. P. Huntington Train runs every hour on the half hour, allowing up-close views of larger animals, such as Nile hippopotamuses, gorillas and orangutans, and their habitats .
Events: Easter, World Giraffe Day (June) Boo at the Zoo (October), and Christmas Zoobilee (December)
Be advised: Food and drinks are not allowed inside the zoo. A picnic pavilion is adjacent to the parking lot.
Information: Contact the zoo at gbzoo.com or 850-932-2229. For information about the area, call the Santa Rosa County Chamber of Commerce at 850-623-2339 or visit srcchamber.com.