A Zoo In Your Backyard, And You Didn't Even Know It
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A Zoo In Your Backyard, And You Didn't Even Know It

A fun interactive experience for everyone, right in the Lehigh Valley.

A Zoo In Your Backyard, And You Didn't Even Know It
Donna Fisher, The Morning Call

A day at the zoo is a dream most children want to come true. Being surrounded by animals in a friendly environment is more than enough to paint a big smile on anyone’s face. Families can bond and learn about exotic mammals and amphibians from all around the world. People stand, gawking at the wolves sprinting through the trees and the peacocks stretching out their magnificent feathers to show an array of vibrant colors. The Lehigh Valley Zoo also has interactive exhibits for young children to see and pet some of the many animals they have in captivity.

For a small price, kids can see their favorite animals living, breathing, and socializing in the Lehigh Valley’s backyard. Many animals native to Pennsylvania are on display in several exhibits, but there are a few exceptions. In some areas of the zoo kids can see lemurs climbing through trees and leaping around like acrobats, or penguins floating in their pond possibly searching for lunch.

With a circular design, the zoo is easy to navigate around, and it’s hard to pass on by an exhibit without taking a minute to admire the interesting animals in action. Some areas of the zoo offer interactive exhibits for the whole family to experience. In one section, there is the infamous petting zoo filled with the typical, friendly barnyard animals. Zoo guests are more than welcome to walk through the petting zoo and even feed some of those animals. It’s one thing to watch a cow from afar, but it’s another to be up close and personal with a cow just mooing life away in the barnyard petting zoo.

Another popular interactive exhibit features the kangaroos from down under. Here, guests are encouraged to walk through the exhibit, just reaching distance from these energetic animals. Do not be alarmed if a kangaroo just so happens to hop in front of others as they walk through the exhibit, after all these guests are in the animals’ domain.

As visitors walk through the zoo, there are specific stations set up where little kids can learn about nature through a variety of activities. Some areas focus on the importance of keeping an environment healthy and how that affects an animal’s life. One activity that shows this distinction revolves around oil spills in the ocean and how harmful they can be. Activities like these encourage children at a young age that the preservation of nature is important if people want to keep these incredible animals alive.

After walking around the zoo for a couple of hours, people need time to unwind and relax. Some guests choose to sit at one of the several designated rest areas or dining pavilions. Other individuals like to sit by the river otters or penguins and munch on their carrots or eat the sandwiches they packed. More adventurous guests may even choose to relax on a small pedal boat, circling around Lemur Island, next to the outdoor terrace.

With such a picturesque environment, it’s no surprise that photographers flock to the indoor bird exhibit in hopes of capturing a kookaburra mid-flight. Some even sprint to the wolf den where these fierce but fluffy creatures roam around their territory, howling as the day goes on. There’s no doubt the Lehigh Valley Zoo does a great job of recreating these animals’ natural habitats with such a limited amount of space. Zebras have room to race around their make believe savannah, while the little river otters have giant moat encircling their small island to swim around in.

Summer vacation is the best time to plan a trip to the zoo because all seasonal and interactive exhibits are guaranteed to be open. Even the smallest zoo can brighten a person’s day considering animals just have that effect on people. Instead of reading or watching an animal from a book or tv, why not just head into the Lehigh Valley’s backyard and visit the zoo.

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