Texas is home to a wide variety of zoos, animal parks, drive-thru safaris, aquariums and animal sanctuaries.
Included on this page are highlights of some of the more popular zoos and animal parks across Texas.
Whether you are touring in Deep East Texas, around Nacogdoches, or in Dallas or Houston or elsewhere in the State, there are zoos and animal parks of interest to adults and children alike.
The Caldwell Zoo in Tyler is an accredited institution, and participates in many breeding projects.
Animals born at the zoo include giraffes, flamingos, black rhinoceros, giant anteaters, and many others.
The 85-acre zoo containing more than 2,000 animals representing 250 species from East Africa, North America, and South America.
The zoo includes a children's petting pen, two aquariums, picnic areas, a café that overlooks an African savanna and gift shops with original African items.
The zoo also has seasonal presentations including a bird show, alligator feedings, giraffe feedings, and elephant demonstrations.
The Caldwell Zoo is located at 2203 Martin Luther King Blvd Tyler, TX 75702. Phone 903.593.0121
For hours of operation, ticket information, and other details, we recommend you visit the official website of the Caldwell Zoo.
Ellen Trout Zoo in Lufkin
The Ellen Trout Zoo is owned and operated by the City of Lufkin which is responsible for its daily operation.
The Zoo is accredited by the Association of Zoos & Aquariums (AZA) and houses over 800 mammals, birds and reptiles from around the world. The Zoo has now been accredited since September of 1983 and was the fifth zoo in Texas to receive accreditation.
Call 936.633.0399 for more information.
Cherokee Trace Drive-Thru Safari
Cherokee Trace Drive-thru Safari is home to an amazing variety of wildlife. See over two dozen exotic and endangered species that thrive in an open habitat similar to their native territory.
At your own pace, enjoy a self-guided drive through the hills and open savannas of this 300-acre preserve.
The safari is located at 1200 CR 4405, about 12 miles east of Jacksonville, Texas. Phone 903.683.3322
Black Beauty Ranch
Black Beauty Ranch, located in Murchison, is one of America’s largest and most diverse animal sanctuaries providing permanent haven to over 600 domestic and exotic animals comprising over 40 different species. Founded in 1979, today the ranch spans over 1,400 acres.
Residents include tigers, bears, primates, kangaroos, bison, horse, farm animals and more that were rescued from research laboratories, the pet trade, roadside zoos and other circumstances of cruelty and neglect.
The Ranch is accredited by the Global Federation of Animal Sanctuaries and is a member of the Big Cat Sanctuary Alliance and the North American Primate Sanctuary Alliance. It is located at 12526 County Road 3806, Murchison, TX 75778. Phone 903.469.3811
To respect the peace and privacy of the animals, the sanctuary only provides prescheduled tours to the public, on the second and fourth Saturday of each month. Tour times may vary and seating is limited. Reserve your tour by calling 903.469.3811, ext. 112.
Tiger Creek Animal Sanctuary
Tiger Creek Animal Sanctuary near Tyler offers visitors and volunteers many opportunities to learn about endangered animals.
Located north of Tyler, and just north of Tyler State Park, at 17552 FM 14. Home to over 40 rescued big cats. Phone 903.858.1008
The Grapeland Safari features over 400 zebras, kangaroos, camels, turtles, emus and other animals roaming freely on 60 acres, all visible from the comfort and safety of your own vehicle.
The drive-thru safari is privately-owned, by the Herring family, and been in operation since 2005. There is also a petting zoo and gift shop.
The Safari is located at 13440 U.S. Highway 287 N, Grapeland, Texas, 75844, on the east side of the highway. Phone 936.687.5292.
East Texas Zoo and Gator Park
The zoo features a wide variety of animals as well as alligators.
Located at 9515 FM1255, Grand Saline, TX 75140. Phone 903.962.5630
Kaleidoscope Ranch is a breathtaking 60-acre ranch in East Texas north of Big Sandy at 1936 Silver Maple Road. The Ranch provides the perfect escape from the daily routine, allowing visitors time to reconnect with family, take photos with cute animals, and even gather your own eggs from our chickens each morning!
The Ranch has four cabins currently available to rent. Included is a fully equipped kitchen with everything you need to cook and dine. Linens and towels are provided. Family room with TV, DVD player, DVDs, games, and books.
While renting a cabin at the Ranch, visitors can hike with a herd of miniature donkeys, feed camels a snack, or brush the shire draft horses' flowing manes. For detailed information and reservations, phone 903.347.2747, and visit
The Roselake Ranch offers a wide variety of activities and entertainment options for the entire family. Services include:
Located at 3632 County Road 271, Garrison, Texas 75965, north of Nacogdoches. For more information, phone 936.559.8222 or visit ...
Pawsitive Animal Encounters
People of all ages should have the opportunity to enjoy an up-close and personal experience with exotic animals not found in the Lufkin, TX area. The goal at Pawsitive Animal Encounters, LLC is to provide as many people as possible with that experience while also keeping our animals safe and happy.
Located at 4719 Peavy Switch Road, Lufkin, TX 75904. For more information, phone 936.404.8227.
Texas Freshwater Fisheries Center
Popular Athens area attractions include the widely known and visited Texas Freshwater Fisheries Center (TFFC), combining outdoor education with a production fish hatchery of the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department. TFFC houses a hatchery, laboratory, aquarium, and education center focusing on underwater wildlife in the state’s freshwater streams, ponds and lakes. Dive shows and tram tours are offered at designed times.
The Center is located about four miles east of Athens and 75 miles southeast of Dallas. The main entrance is at 5550 F.M. 2495, Athens, Texas 75752. Phone 903.676.2277