Like supermodels, wild animals are notoriously standoffish, coaxed out of their dens only by chic animal prints or perfume-commercial contracts. See natural beauty up close with this Groupon.
Choose Between Two Options
- $9 for admission for two (up to $18 value)
- $18 for admission for four (up to $36 value)
Stroll across unpaved trails of crushed granite gravel to visit big cats such as tigers, leopards, or African lions wearing bejeweled crowns. An optional 15-minute train ride whisks visitors on a tour past animals relaxing on real grass and landscaping. Take time to visit Mikhail and Nikolai, a duo of red foxes, or visit the recently opened Discovery Center to meet Blaze, the fire-bellied toad, and his reptile friend Sage, who happens to be an 8-foot carpet python. Guests can purchase animal food ($2) for the petting zoo to hand feed goats, sheep, deer, and thrifty zoo staff.
Austin Zoo originated as Good Day Ranch in 1990 featuring pony rides and goat-milking demonstrations. Over the next four years, the founders began rescuing exotic animals and evolving into a rescue center, renaming the facility under its current moniker. After becoming a safe haven for more than 300 rescued animals of more than 100 different species, the Austin Zoo began the process of becoming a nonprofit organization, which it completed in 2000. Housed in native Texas Hill Country enclosures, the animals can enjoy real grass and landscaping instead of concrete exhibits or studio apartments. African lions and Bengal tigers stretch out in the big cat habitats while colobus monkeys and a marmoset swing from tree to tree in monkey areas. In addition to wild creatures, the zoo houses domesticated animals such as a miniature donkey, potbellied pigs, and llamas.