San Diego Zoo Safari Park
Get ready for the ultimate Hollywood movie experience
Visit over 3,500 animals from six continents of the world at San Diego Zoo Safari Park – just 35 miles north of downtown San Diego. You’ll get to see the animals run, roam, prowl, and fly around in the park’s large and open naturalistic settings.
Our guide to San Diego Zoo Safari Park
San Diego Zoo Safari Park features over 1,800 acres of sprawling scenery that closely mimics the animals’ natural habitats for an iconic animal viewing experience.
Learn all about a variety of wild and endangered animals from all corners of the world through entertaining and educational shows and demonstrations, on-hand staff and specialists that care for the animals every day and are there to answer any questions, fascinating exhibits and more. One of the park’s highlights is their dedication to animal and environment conservation; see how wildly successful the zoo’s own California condor breeding program is and visit the world’s largest veterinary hospital.
Your San Diego Zoo Safari Park ticket includes:
- 1-Day Pass General Admission tickets to San Diego Zoo Safari Park
- Ride on the Africa Tram Safari and admission to the Cheetah Run
- All regularly scheduled exhibits and shows, including Frequent Flyers Bird Show, Elephant Keeper Talk, Trainer Talk, and more
Please note: interactive experiences are available for additional fees – you can ask about upgrade options upon arrival.
Animals you’ll see: The San Diego Zoo Safari Park is largely home to animals from arid environments, including rhinos, camels, cheetahs, lions, tigers, elephants, giraffes, zebras, gorillas, antelope, large birds, and tons more.
Exhibit highlights at San Diego Zoo Safari Park:
With 13 distinct habitats and regions within the park, there’s a ton to see and do during your day at the San Diego Zoo Safari Park.
- Africa Tram Safari: go on a 20-30 minute guided safari-like ride in a covered, open-air tram. Your tram ride will take you through the park’s African Savannah field to see the animals, including giraffes, rhinos, Cape buffalo, ostriches, gazelles, antelope, and more as they roam around the grasslands (some animals might even come up to and wander near your tram!). Your guide will tell you all about the fascinating details of their lives, describing their unique behaviors, and the survival challenges they face in the world today.
- Elephant Valley: learn about elephant care, straight from the sources, with an educational talk and demonstration at the park’s amphitheater where animal keepers talk about elephant care at the park and around the world.
- Gorilla Exhibit: get up close views of a large and active gorilla family peacefully interacting in their massive exhibit – one of the park’s most popular! See how you measure up next to an adult male gorilla at the gorilla activity center.
- Lion Camp: get a peek into a lion’s den and watch the playful creatures run and interact in the 33,000-square-foot Lion Camp; guests will get a rare opportunity for a face-to-face encounter with lions. The Tull Family Tiger Trail experience puts visitors right into the world of colorful Sumatran tigers, providing a closer view of this remarkable species than was ever before possible to enjoy.
- Cheetah Run: watch the park’s resident cheetah reach speeds of up to 70-miles per hour during the once daily Cheetah Run
- Tiger Trail: this winding trail takes you to some of the parks most popular exhibits on a guided walk through the bamboo forest – be sure to look around, you see several Sumatran tigers along the way (including at an underwater viewing stop where they like to swim).
- Petting Kraal: kids (and adults) can interact with the park’s friendly goats.
Tips for visiting: To avoid the largest crowds, be sure to get to the park early and head straight to the Africa Tram Safari (included with your Safari Park tickets) first as wait times tend to increase throughout the day and are busiest between 11 am and 3 pm.
- Wear comfortable shoes; the park is big, so you can expect to walk a fair amount and dress for the weather as most of your park experience will be outdoors.
- Bring binoculars if you have them; because the animal habitats are designed to mimic the animals’ natural environments with large spaces for the animals to wander, you might need a little vision boost to see animals hanging out farther from the viewing areas. (Though there are some places in the park with binoculars available for viewing for this reason.)
- Bring quarters to purchase bird feed if you want to feed the birds (they’ll land right on your arm and peck from your hand!).
- Grab a map on your way into the park to get familiar with the layout and check out the list of daily scheduled events.
- If you leave the park, be sure to get a hand stamp if you plan on returning the same day.
- Plan to drive to Safari Park (~45 minutes) as public transportation can take around 2 hours from downtown San Diego (please note: parking is not included).
- Wondering how long to spend at the San Diego Zoo Safari Park? We recommend allowing for a full day to see all the exhibits, animal shows, and talks.
- No trip to San Diego is complete without a visit to the famous San Diego Zoo Safari Park located in the San Pasqual Valley area of SanDiego near Escondido.
Our guide to San Diego Zoo Safari Park
Cheetah claws are hard and sharp like cleats, giving them great traction when they run. You can watch a cheetah run at full speed after a mechanical lure daily, during the Park’s popular Cheetah Run.
The Africa Tram is an exciting expedition, with safari tour vehicles and our diverse animal collection creating a relaxing adventure. The ride path takes you around some of the field exhibits, giving you a chance to connect with the animals on a closer level
Enjoy various, interactive encounters when you visit San Diego Zoo Safari Park - Animal Ambassador Stage, Nairobi Station, Petting Kraal, Lorikeet Landing and Lemur Walk
Terms and conditions
Terms and conditions for San Diego Zoo Safari Park
- You will be sent a gate ready San Diego Zoo e-ticket not a voucher, ensuring minimum fuss on arrival.
- Once booked and confirmed the ticket is non-refundable and non-changeable. 100% cancellation fees apply.