Greater Vancouver Zoo, Vancouver
The Greater Vancouver Zoo is the only zoo in the Vancouver region. For the longest time it was called the "Game Farm", so many locals will still refer to it as such.
Located out in the rolling farmland of Aldergrove, the Greater Vancouver Zoo (GVZ) is an ideal day trip for animal lovers. Most people that don't like traditional zoos enjoy the GVZ because the animals live on generous plots of land. The plots are kept in a wild, natural state. It feels more like a farm than a traditional zoo.
There are many species of animals at the GVZ. Amphibians, reptiles, monkeys, and tropical birds. There are African favourites like lions, rhinos, zebras, hippos and giraffes. There are Asian species like tigers and elephants. There are even animals you've likely never seen, like miniature deer that were treasured in ancient China, to the funny-looking capybaras which resemble giant rodents.
If you're visiting from another country, you'll be happy to find Canadian species such as grizzlies, black bears and bald eagles. You'll find arctic wolves, Roosevelt elk and moose.
There really is a lot to see and learn about the world's animal species. You might find yourself a short distance away from sacred zebu of India, or the noble yaks of Nepal. Turn a corner and you might run into a camel poking his nose over the fence to greet you. Look under the fence to see a wild boar snorting your way. Turn the other direction and a black panther might have been watching you the entire time.
You can easily spend half a day at the GVZ. It's very popular for families. There are many picnic facilities throughout the zoo, so pack a lunch! For a small fee, there's even a 15 minute narrated train ride.
While the Greater Vancouver Zoo is an hour drive out of Vancouver, it's very easy to get to. Simply take the Trans Canada Hwy (Hwy 1), eastbound out of Vancouver. Take the exit for 264th Ave in Aldergrove and follow the signs to the zoo. It's only a short drive off the highway.