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Turtle Back Zoo, West Orange

4.4
#1 of 8 in Things to do in West Orange
Home to about 850 animals representing 275 species, Turtle Back Zoo welcomes half million people annually to its themed exhibits. See a sea lion tank and prowl along a penguin coastline; tour habitats of large cats, wolves, bears, and alligators; and visit a reptile center. Wildlife aficionados won't want to miss the 2.7 m (9 ft) long lizard that was discovered in 2005 and still has no scientific name. Can foxes fly? You'll find out by seeking out the first flying foxes in any United States' zoo--giant bats that can reach a weight of 1.1 kg (2.4 lb) with a 1.5 m (4.9 ft) wingspan. The zoo is a part of South Mountain Recreation Complex. To visit Turtle Back Zoo and other attractions in West Orange, use our West Orange trip maker tool .
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Turtle Back Zoo Reviews
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TripAdvisor Traveler Rating
TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4.5
704 reviews
Google
4.5
TripAdvisor
  • Wonderful clean and friendly zoo. This is a GREAT day trip not only because of the zoo but also because there is an incredible park immediately behind the zoo parking lot. It is absolutely beautiful t...  more »
  • Had not been to Turtle Back Zoo in over 15 years. What a improvement. Was great , clean and exciting. Recommend for children, families and couples.  more »
  • Always a fun time with the family & kids. The put a lot of money into this zoo so it is interesting too.  more »
Google
  • Great zoo! Parking is free. Perfect for families with kids. The sea lion show is excellent. The sting rays are super friendly and you can touch them as they swim by. It's lots of fun to feed the mini parrots in the aviary; they fly and hop all around you. The prairie dog exhibit is very creative with little tunnel lookouts you can crawl in. The list goes on. And the size of the zoo is just right! (it doesn't take that long to get from one side to the other, so long as you have a stroller for every kid...) Get a yearly membership! It's barely more that the cost of going twice, so think of your third, fourth, fifth (etc) trip as free!
  • A great zoo to take your kids and family to. Lots of exhibits and animals to see and they are constantly expanding it with new attractions. Last year they added the giraffe exhibit and this year they have added the lion exhibit. I believe they do sheep shearing once in awhile but I'm not sure how often they do it. There is also plenty of parking and the zoo is kept clean.
  • Good for young kids. Some of the exhibits are old school zoo with cages that are difficult to see through and get a good look at the animals. The newer ones are worth seeing. They are making a new lion exhibit. The place is hit or miss on being crowded during the week. It can be overrun with class trips and can be nightmarish. The other issue is shade. It has virtually no shade or trees near many of the older exhibits. On hot days it can be brutally hot. And the place is a bit of a maze, you can get lost easily if you don't have a map. Food is decent albeit slightly overpriced but that's par for the course generally.
  • Place was very well kept and well maintained. Animals all looked healthy with a variety from reptiles to wolves, lions, mammals, sea lions and birds. My kids loved the Touch Tank. The train ride was a great addition too especially that it was inclusive on the admission ticket already. The Aviary and Butterly tent were memorable experiences for my little ones. Strongly recommended!
  • A growing zoo with Jersey roots. My family loves the giraffes and other expanding exhibitions, services and activities. Whether it's been days or years since your last visit, I recommend making the trip.

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