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“WOW!!!! I Love Cats!!!” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Turpentine Creek Wildlife Refuge

Turpentine Creek Wildlife Refuge
239 Turpentine Creek Lane, Eureka Springs, AR 72632
479 253 5841
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Type: Nature/ Wildlife Areas
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Attraction Details
Owner description: "With over 130+ exotic cats and other wildlife on display, Turpentine Creek Wildlife Refuge is one of the largest big cat sanctuaries in the United States. The non-profit USDA licensed refuge, founded in 1992, has grown to become one of the Top 10 attractions in Arkansas and the most popular in Eureka Springs. Lions, cougars, leopards, tigers, and bears are displayed in large natural habitats surrounding the main compound enclosures and gift shop. Each animal has its own story/history plaque for self-guided tours and over night accommodations are available via the Safari Lodge, RV park, and camping facilities. Guided tours available and popular daily feeding times are 4 p.m. (winter) to 5 p.m. (summer). The refuge is open year round (except Christmas Day) from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.."
Lake Arthur, Louisiana
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
“WOW!!!! I Love Cats!!!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 25, 2011

Wonderful thing they are doing. I'm not sure why people think they can domesticate wild animals, but nevertheless, this place takes them in, cares for them and finds them a home. This is a must see if your in the area.

Visited June 2011
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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583 reviews from our community

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Date | Rating
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English first
Patterson, Louisiana
Top Contributor
62 reviews 62 reviews
38 attraction reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
51 helpful votes 51 helpful votes
“This place was awesome”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 25, 2011

These people are my heroes. To watch one of the commercials on TV about abused animals and then to go to a place that takes them from those bad environments and treats them with loving care gives me a great appreciation for the monumental efforts of the staff at Turpentine Creek. I read complaints about the fee but I would gladly pay twice what I paid to enter knowing what good care these beautiful animals are getting. After all, vacation time is not a time for pinching pennies. I can't say enough nice things about this place. Are there negatives? Sure, but show me a place that is PERFECT. Areas that could be improved are wider sidewalks, especially for handicapped using wheelchairs or scooters and more benches. We spent more time here than any other attraction we visited during our vacation.

Visited May 2011
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Saint Louis, Missouri
19 reviews 19 reviews
10 attraction reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
“Up close and personal”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 22, 2011

The cats were great, there are tons of them, all with a unique story of how they came to the sanctuary. You get to be quite close to them, which is much better than most zoos. Some of the cats are in their smaller, temporary enclosures, which you can get very very close to. There was one cat that sprayed some people, so watch out and be careful! I'd recommend doing the 4:00pm guided tour, and then feeding time is at 5:00pm. The cats are very active right before their feeding, running around and playing. Take your video camera.

Visited June 2011
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Columbia, MO
20 reviews 20 reviews
8 attraction reviews
Reviews in 11 cities Reviews in 11 cities
14 helpful votes 14 helpful votes
“So totally awesome”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 11, 2011

Didn't stay, but took afternoon tour. How cool to get so close to these animals! They are so beautiful. And to hear them 'talk' to each other....fabulous.

Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Fayetteville, Arkansas
2 reviews
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
“Wonderful refuge for abandoned and neglected big cats”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 26, 2011

We stayed a night in one of the Zulu Safari Lodges at Turpentine Creek recently. The adults-only lodges are well designed, cozy and clean. They boast many nice amenities such as private back decks overlooking the valley and bathrobes for the hot tub on the shared deck. We slept with the windows open so we could listen to the cats caroling at night. What an experience!

The staff at the refuge are knowledgeable and passionate about these unwanted, neglected, and abandoned big cats. Do not come expecting a tourist-centered zoo. The primary goal of the refuge is to provide a safe home for these animals, and allowing people to pay an entrance fee to view the animals helps provide funds to keep the refuge running. The front section contains concrete and metal cages which some visitors object to, but they need to realize this is a much better situation than the animals were rescued from. The back section contains large fenced areas where the cats can romp in a more natural setting. As funds are raised, additional natural habitats are constructed in the woods and more of the animals are moved from the main compound to the habitats.

There are self-guided tours of the cages in the main compound and guided tours of the habitats. Feeding time is at 4:00 in the winter and 5:00 the rest of the year. This is a great time to watch the tigers, lions, cougars, and bears get very animated before dinner time.

Turpentine Creek Wildlife Refuge is a wonderful place to visit for a few hours or to stay for several nights. Check it out at www.turpentinecreek.org .

Visited March 2011
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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