The 10 Biggest Zoos In The United States

Big zoos have the advantage of offering some of the best resources to those who want to see multiple animal species. Sure, small zoos are also fun. But kids are almost always impressed by large spaces such as zoos which are home to all types of exotic animals they can’t normally see on farms. The biggest zoos in America are also some of the biggest in the world offering high-quality conditions for the animals they care for as well as plenty of animal research centers.

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10. Brookfield Zoo, Chicago

Image: Brookfield Zoo

As one of the biggest zoos in the country, Brookfield Zoo offers an impressive number of activities and animals. It also pioneered multiple indoor exhibits such as the first indoor rainforest back in the ’80s. Over 450 animal species can be found at this large zoo. We recommend taking one of the backstage tours to see how animals are cared for here. However, you might also be able to see this without going on a tour given the zoo only uses trenches instead of fences to protect people from the animals.

9. Henry Doorly Zoo, Omaha

Image: Henry Doorly Zoo

The Omaha Zoo holds one of the world’s largest indoor rainforest and nocturnal exhibit. A large number of animals here have also made the zoo popular among animal researchers. It is believed that there are more than 900 species of animals here with a total number of animals just above 17,000. But children are also impressed by the giant glass dome at the zoo which holds one of the largest indoor deserts to be found anywhere in the world.

8. Columbus Zoo, Ohio

Image: Columbus Zoo

With a surface of nearly 600 acres, Columbus Zoo has over 10,000 animals. It is a top weekend destination as it also includes a water park and an amusement park. Families from all around Ohio travel here with their kids for fun and education.

The Columbus Zoo Aquarium is another top attraction you need to visit while at the zoo. If you’ve already seen the animals and these attractions, you can head over to the on-site golf course for a bit of relaxation.

7. Smithsonian’s National Zoo, Washington

Image: Smithsonian’s National Zoo

Established back in 1889, the zoo is one of the oldest in the country. It is funded by the institute with the same name and it aims to educate the general public on animal rights and safety. As a result, entry is free of charge here. There are over 2,700 animals for you to see and learn more about here. As a research institute, the zoo also holds multiple wildlife documentaries with an impressive following on TV and online which means you might have to sit patiently in line, especially on weekends.

6. Disney’s Animal Kingdom, Florida

Image: Disney’s Animal Kingdom

The Animal Kingdom is a privately-owned theme park with thousands of animals to see. You can’t miss this zoo, especially if you’re a Disney fan. With a surface of 540 acres, it’s the home of over 2,000 animals. As expected, there’s something more to the place compared to a regular zoo. There are a few shows here every day for kids to enjoy.

5. Kansas City Zoo, Kansas City

Image: Kansas City Zoo

The Kansas Zoo is one of the most popular in the country for its Australian and African sections. There are over 1,300 animals to be seen here as you stroll from one part of the zoo to another. Animals are grouped according to the zone they come from for the most part with the exception of the orangutan area. Another popular area of the zoo is the penguin area where you can see the little birds both on land and underwater.

4. Dallas Zoo, Texas

Image: Dallas Zoo

Rare animals can be found at the Dallas Zoo. Established in 1888, it is the oldest zoo in Texas and one of the oldest in the world. Since then, it has constantly increased the number of animals on display. Among them, pandas, Malayan tigers, and Sumatran tigers attract huge crowds. With plenty of streams and trees for monkeys to climb on, the zoo is also well kept offering a comfortable environment for its guests.

3. Pittsburgh Zoo, Pennsylvania

Image: Pittsburgh Zoo

Amur leopards and Amur tigers are among the thousands of animals to be seen at this zoo. But we like it a lot compared to others due to its interactive nature. Kids take part in different exhibits and they can get up close to the animals themselves. Burrowing animals are among the species kids can admire from a close distance. Otherwise, they can see rare animals such as Komodo dragons and red dragons.

2. Los Angeles Zoo, California

Image: Los Angeles Zoo

Los Angeles Zoo is home to 58 endangered animal species and it holds a special place in the conservation efforts in the animal world. It is also an interesting place for the entire family to visit since it offers over 1,400 animals to view. If you like to get up close to some animals, you can do this at the LA Zoo. For example, you can feed giraffes and flamingos which can be a first for those visiting with children.

1. Bronx Zoo, New York

Image: Bronx Zoo

The Bronx Zoo is a historical location that has constantly evolved since 1899. With a surface of over 265 acres, it makes it easy to forget you are in the middle of New York. It hosts over 4,000 animals which also makes it a large zoo in America.

Among the areas of the zoo worth visiting, you need to stop at the Congo Gorilla Forest. African Plains are among the sections of the zoo also worth stopping by. But even the locations are worth photographing here. Fromm savannas to forested areas, it seems the zoo has recreated the natural habitat the animals are used to out in the wild. If you’re visiting with kids it’s also worth stopping by the penguin area at feeding time to see the little birds feasting on fish. But easy accessibility is what impresses most about this Zoo which can be reached by taxi, bikes, or by subway.