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Living Desert Zoo & Gardens

47-900 Portola Ave., Palm Desert, CA 92260
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Ranked #2 of 26 attractions in Palm Desert
Type: Nature/ Wildlife Areas, Deserts, Gardens, Parks, Natural History Museums, Zoos
Activities: Group tours/walking tour, Viewing foliage, Viewing wildlife, Walking
Description: The botanical gardens of this park offer great opportunities to see desert vegetation.
Useful Information: Activities for older children, Activities for young children
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818 reviews from our community

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Date | Rating
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English first
San Diego, California
4 reviews 4 reviews
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 15, 2014

This is the prototypical pseudo-zoo where there's a few animals that fit the montage of the zoo, but it's not the full-fledged zoo you'll find in other places. They have a few neat things tailored to little kids, but it's a zoo in a desert. It's not like this is going to be the best zoo you've ever visited. They're... More

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Bermuda Dunes, California
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
5 attraction reviews
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 14, 2014

This wonderful place is always magical in December. The animals, the trains and, of course, the lights! So many lights too. The trains are around year round and difficult not to marvel at. There's always something new to spot.

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Top Contributor
50 reviews 50 reviews
22 attraction reviews
36 helpful votes 36 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 12, 2014

An interesting zoo in the desert. Lots of wildlife exhibits, it also has hiking trails for the more adventurous. Worth an afternoon, especially if you have kids.

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Surrey, UK
14 reviews 14 reviews
46 helpful votes 46 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed August 11, 2014

Giraffes not on show the day we went, yet no reduction in entrance fee. Understandably most of the animals were hidden away asleep due to the august heat (even at 830 am). We braved the high temps to walk around looking at empty animal habitats. We were most pleased to find the shuttle bus 2/3 of the way round as... More

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Naples, Florida
Top Contributor
89 reviews 89 reviews
14 attraction reviews
32 helpful votes 32 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 11, 2014

We had a very enjoyable and educational time at our visit to the Living Desert Zoo and Gardens. It really put our desert vacation in the right perspective as far as the plants and wildlife that are in a desert - not only this area but from other deserts around the world. The staff were very approachable and knowledgeable. The... More

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Redmond, Washington
Top Contributor
66 reviews 66 reviews
9 attraction reviews
33 helpful votes 33 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed August 9, 2014

We brought our two toddlers here in August and the temp was right around 100. Many of the displays were empty, not sure why. The goats were a big hit with us. The one overwhelming positive was the staff. Everyone very friendly and eager to inform and help.

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Indio, California
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
3 attraction reviews
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 1, 2014

Planning on going again in the next week. Love this place, the atmosphere, animals seemed to be well kept and lots of volunteers and staff. Very informative on all levels. Very hot this time of year so must go early or early evening.

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Flossmoor, Illinois
12 reviews 12 reviews
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 31, 2014

Whenever I head out to the Palm Springs area, I make a point to visit the Living Desert. The gardens are phenomenal and the zoological collections are well housed and displayed. Easy to taverse, but make sure you bring a hat, sunscreen, and sunblock!

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Kidderminster, United Kingdom
Top Contributor
53 reviews 53 reviews
19 attraction reviews
20 helpful votes 20 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 31, 2014

Well not a day. We got there at 8.00am when it opened and it closes in the summer at 1.30pm. Just as well, the temperature had reached 112F by then. If you don' know the Living Desert has a range of animals that have been rescued from people who think that it's fun to keep a leopard or an eagle... More

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La Verne, California
11 reviews 11 reviews
4 attraction reviews
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 31, 2014

We first came in November with our grandchildren. They loved the animals, especially the newborns. Where else would you see a young giraffe with her mother? The docents are friendly and point out the highlights each time we come. We just visited again this July. We came early, and took the tram to minimize the heat. This time there were... More

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