If you are looking for a fun zoo to visit in the Columbus area, be sure to spend some time at the Columbus Zoo. The Columbus Zoo and Aquarium is a non-profit zoo located near Powell in the precious city of Columbus, OH. The land lies along the eastern banks of the O’Shaughnessy Reservoir on the Scioto River, at the intersection of Riverside Drive and Powell Road. It has a worldwide reputation, largely attributable to the efforts and promotion of director emeritus Jack Hanna. In 2009, it was named by the USA Travel Guide as the number one zoo in the United States.It was also ranked number one best zoo in 2012 by Besties Readers Choice.
The Columbus Zoo and Aquarium is home to over 7,000 animals, which represents more than 800 species and sees over 2.3 million visitors every year. The animal exhibits are divided into regions of the world, with the zoo currently operating eight such regions. In addition the zoo owns an 18-hole golf course, known as the Safari Golf Club which encompasses 56.656 hectares. The zoo also owns Zoombezi Bay which encompasses 9.187 hectares. In total, the zoo owns 234 hectares of land, with 164.424 hectares dedicated to the zoo itself.
The zoo operates its own conservation program, donating money to outside programs as well as participating in their own conservation efforts. Over the past five years the zoo has contributed over $3.3 million to more than 70 projects in 30 countries. The zoo also has a close working relationship with the Wilds, a 9,154-acre animal conservation center located in southeast Ohio and featured on the Columbus Zoo’s website
The Columbus Zoo is divided into regions, each housing animals from a particular region of the world. Each region is themed for the particular area of the world they are representing, though older regions are themed less than the newly constructed ones. Food and souvenir shops are located throughout the zoo, each one also themed for the region the shop is in. There are three modes of transportation through the zoo other than walking. These include a train that circles the North America region, a tram that borders the southern part of the North America Region that takes visitors to Polar Frontier, and a boat ride around the Islands of Southeast Asia region.
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Also visit Columbus Museum of Art Columbus, OH