San Diego Zoo Safari Park

15500 San Pasqual Valley Rd, Escondido, CA 92027, USA

While tourists flock to the world-famous San Diego Zoo, its Safari Park—located 30 miles away in the San Pasqual Valley—is equally interesting. Spread over 1,800 acres, it’s home to more than 3,500 animals and 260 different species as well as a huge botanical garden. Massive, open-range enclosures re-create various habitats from around the world (don’t miss African Plains, which is larger than the entire San Diego Zoo itself), while interactive exhibits allow visitors to get up close and personal with lemurs, lorikeets, bats, and more. The Safari Park began as a breeding program to supply the zoo but, over time, has become a major conservatory project. In fact, its condor-breeding efforts are behind the almost extinct bird’s successful reintroduction to the wilds of California. Note: Early mornings are the best time to see animal activity. Avoid August, September, and October, which are the area’s hottest months.

More Recommendations

Getting Up Close to Tigers

For a truly exceptional zoo experience, make sure to visit the beautifully preserved and well-maintained world-class San Diego Zoo Safari Park. In comparison to the San Diego Zoo located in Balboa Park, the safari park offers a more unique and personal experience to the animals in many spread out environments, including their numerous caravan tours lasting anywhere from 1-4 hours.

Information on this page, including website, location, and opening hours, is subject to have changed since this page was last published. If you would like to report anything that’s inaccurate, let us know at

Nearby highlights
Sign up for our newsletter
Join more than a million of the world’s best travelers. Subscribe to the Daily Wander newsletter.
More From AFAR