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Mill Mountain Zoo, Roanoke

Categories: Zoos & Aquariums, Nature & Parks, Outdoor Activities
Inspirock Rating:
3/5 based on 190+ reviews on the web
The Mill Mountain Zoo is a zoo located atop Mill Mountain in Roanoke, Virginia. Originally opening in 1952, the zoo was operated by the City of Roanoke for its first 24 years. In 1976, the city turned its operation over to the Roanoke Jaycees. The Jaycees operated the zoo until 1988 when its operation was handed over to the non-profit Blue Ridge Zoological Society (BRZS). The BRZS today still serves as the operator and fund-raising mechanism for the zoo and its operations.The zoo has been accredited by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA) since 1995.HistoryWith its location atop Mill Mountain not being conducive to a major expansion, a proposal developed in 1984 to relocate the zoo to a 400acre tract adjacent to the Blue Ridge Parkway as the Blue Ridge Zoo. This proposal was later abandoned in favor of the development of Virginia's Explore Park at the location originally proposed for the zoo. After the failed relocation proposal, the Blue Ridge Zoological Society voted in 1988 to have the zoo permanently located atop Mill Mountain. As part of this decision, a 10-year master plan called Zoo 2001, was completed in 1991, with some of its suggestions successfully implemented over the course of the next decade.Additions since 2008: New Holding/Quarantine Building (houses new animals and the aviary birds during the winter-not accessible to the publicNew Animal Clinic-not accessible to the publicRed Wolf ExhibitEurasian Black Vulture ExhibitBlack Tufted Marmoset Exhibit (Burmese pythons were moved into the Reptile House)Canadian Lynx Exhibit (where red tailed hawks were)Interactive AviaryReptile House
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  • This is a small and compact zoo but is inexpensive to visit. We spent an enjoyable and relaxing hour here after visiting the Roanoke Star. 
  • We stopped here enroute to go up to the see the big Star. It was worth the hour or so. They have some pretty unique animals and it's easy enough to walk around. Great picture places as well. Photo ops...  read more »
  • Locally funded, quaint zoo perfect for adults and kids alike. If you're planning on visiting Mill Mountain star, set aside some time for the zoo. Not a massive zoo, but perfect if you have small child...  read more »
  • Really great zoo! The staff were helpful and answered all our questions. We saw all the animals, and there were signs telling you where to find them if they have the habit of hiding. They even have windows into the private areas for the animals just in case they are in the back. I think some people reviewing just weren't patient enough to wait for all the animals to come out. The best aviary I've ever seen as well.
  • Not a terrible zoo but not great either. We have been here several times. There used to be a honeybee exhibit here in the first building before the walking path to the zoo. I think they got rid of it because its not there anymore. Theres also a rude blonde woman named Grace who works in there. She actually told me “Don't ask me, just go away ” when I was asking about the animals in the zoo. I told her to her face she was not friendly and she replied “ I am soooo sorry” very sarcastically. When you actually get to the zoo from the walking path the staff get nicer but the exhibits are very small. They need new ones.
  • You actually passed the zoo heading to the top of the mountain of the Roanoke star. I did decide one day to go ahead and take my daughter to the zoo. I felt it was a waste of time and money. And they have like one of every animal which they only have like 10 animals. They all of the very sad and depressed and they should just be let go or be brought to a better place where they can be happier and not locked up in cages. Do not get me wrong I enjoy zoos, I go to Animal Kingdom and other places and enjoy looking at the animals, however this place they all just seemed absolutely miserable.
  • Small zoo that keeps kids occupied for a few hours. The staff is friendly and helpful, and they've got a small but diverse collection of animals. There's a small train and playground to keep younger kids occupied, and you can hike up to see the Roanoke Star from the parking area.
  • very poor excuse for a zoo...don't even bother to spend your money at this liiterally takes 15 minutes to walk around the zoo...terrible!!
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