Living Desert Zoo
Living Desert Zoo
47-900 Portola Avenue
Palm Desert, CA 92260
Living Desert Zoo Description
Discover some of the wondrous plants and animals that make their homes in deserts in North America, Mexico, and Africa at this combination zoo and botanical garden. Animal lovers will marvel at the creatures in the Africa section (including gazelles, camels, zebras, warthogs, and wild dogs), then be even more amazed by those in the North America section (including mountain lions, bobcats, wolves, and the colorful birds in four aviaries). The plants are spectacular as well, but for kids, the animals steal the show.
School-Age Kids: Sign up for the Gecko Explorers program (select Saturday mornings from 9 to noon) for an interactive, behind-the-scenes tour of the Living Desert.
Pre-Teens & Teens: If older kids aren't interested in the zoo or plants, consider an exploration of the park's extensive trails instead. Trails range from leisurely loop hikes to a three-mile strenuous trek to the base of Eisenhower Mountain.
- Don't miss the wildlife hospital. The more than 400 animals here are cared for at this on-site animal hospital, where visitors can sometimes watch veterinarians at work and ask questions about the procedures being performed.
- Check the schedule. Animal encounters and wildlife shows take place daily -- consult the schedule before planning your route. Arrive well before start times to secure prime seats.
- Animal interactions. Kids who want to touch and not just look at the animals have two venues to choose from: the Petting Kraal in Village WaTuTu (a traditional petting zoo) and the Discovery Room (with interactive exhibits, displays, and petting stations).
- Save on admission. Purchase your Living Desert tickets during a Desert Adventure Jeep Tour for reduced-price admission.
Just the Facts
Hours: June-August: Daily 8:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m. September-June: Daily 9 a.m.-5 p.m.
Recommended Time: Half day