"" Writer's Wanderings: Zoo Miami

Monday, December 27, 2010

Zoo Miami

Every kid loves a zoo and I’m no different. When we had the opportunity to visit Miami’s zoo in perfect winter weather (70 degrees, sunny, and a nice gentle breeze), we grabbed our grandkids and took them along. Seems their dad (my son) enjoys the zoo as well so we let him come too.

The zoo is much larger than I realized. Two days would have been needed to see it all if you were on foot as we were. There are several modes of transportation available—all for a price: Safari Cycles which are two, four or six passenger self-pedal buggies (they rented from $40-70/day), tram tours, or a monorail that was about $3/ride as far as we could tell. Some of the monorail stops were closed the day we visited.

The animals were enjoying the warm weather after a short cold spell had kept them in heated areas. I never saw the big turtles move so much and monkeys of all sorts of varieties were swinging from branch to branch and letting their joy be heard by all.

The most amazing sight was the lion who perched himself on top of a crest of rocks and posed for all of us. He’d turn his head one way and then the other, yawn on occasion which just made him look as if he were roaring, and then cross one paw over the other or vice versa as though he were posing for publicity shots.

The tigers were given an early Christmas present, box full of meat. The one neatly stuck his head in and pulled out what he wanted.

There are several species of camel, elephants, and other animals scattered throughout the zoo. Some of them we didn’t get to see. All are in wonderfully designed natural areas.

Zoo Miami also has quite a variety of unusual birds. Their climate allows for some of the more exotic to be displayed outdoors.

And then there was my least favorite—the snakes. But since my grandson said they were “just beautiful, Grandma,” I had to look. Hmm. For me, a snake is a snake. I’ll let everyone else do the admiring.

Admission prices are about $17/adult but you can pay an extra $5 and get in a second day. The grounds are beautifully kept and it’s a great place to visit if you have some time while visiting the area when the weather is cooler in winter. I imagine it’s quite a steamy place in the summer.

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