The most beautiful zoo in the world? While this might sound like a bold statement, the lions with their oceanfront view wouldn’t likely quibble about it. Located on 30 acres right across from the ocean, this small zoo has repeatedly been voted one of the best in the nation, particularly for children.
Over 600 animals fill the zoo’s various exhibits. Cats of Africa feature African lions and black-footed cats, while The Forest’s Edge features western lowland gorillas of Congo fame, while California Trails proudly displays the fauna of California, including the ultra-rare Californian Condor. Also popular are the Asian elephants, the giraffe exhibit, 100-year old tortoises, a petting farm, and a colony of Humboldt penguins.
The Santa Barbara Zoo is located at 500 Ninos Drive, Santa Barbara, CA 93103, and is open every day from 10am to 5pm. Parking is $6, but adjacent to the zoo there’s a public lot where parking is free.