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Animal sanctuaries

toronto
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91 posts
16 reviews
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Animal sanctuaries

Hi!

Can anyone please tell me if there are any animal sanctuaries (no zoos!) in the LA area? Or where a good location to see animals in their natural habitat would be?

For example while in San Francisco we drove down the coast to Carmel (Point Lobos) and Santa Cruz and were able to see seals along the beaches and near the piers. Or in Northern California there is the Farm Sanctuary rescue. We would like to go to Tippy Hedren's Shambala Preserve, but won't be arriving in time. Is there anything like these places close or nearby to LA? We don't mind traveling an hour or so out of the city.

Thank you!

Teaneck, NJ
Destination Expert
for New Jersey
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1. Re: Animal sanctuaries

I can recommend 2 santuaries of a different sort, they are animal rescue stations. The first is the Star Eco Station http://www.ecostation.org/ in Culver City: A very unusual place -- an environmental science and animal rescue site. All the animals there -- and they're pretty much all exotic animals -- were abandoned by someone, usually some fool who thought that an exotic baby animal would make a good pet and then couldn't handle it when it grew up. Eco Station is a government designated wildlife rescue site and has the animals in very nicely displayed cages, terariums, etc. They run a lot of school programs and the tours are heavy on education but fascinating. This is very close to all the major tourist destinations in LA.

The second is in San Pedro, the Marine Animal Santuary http://www.marinemammalcare.org/ for sick and injured marine animals like sea lions and seals. The holding pens are viewable to the public and they also have a small exhibit area. Warning: the animals can be smelly!

While in San Pedro, be sure to stop by the Cabrillo Marine Museum, a real gem of a place http://www.cabrilloaq.org/ and also the Korean Friendship Bell www.sanpedrochamber.com/champint/korenbel.htm which is quite charming.

Also in San Pedro is Ports O'Call Village which you will pass on the way to the above www.sanpedrochamber.com/champint/portcall.htm -- and this will require some explanation. Almost no one on this forum will recommend it -- assuming they've heard of it. Most people in LA will tell you that it's a tired, old and low class shopping area. Well, I've been there and this is the scoop -- it's one of the unsung treasures of LA. It is HEAVILY hispanic (I'd say 75%) and about 20% Asian and the remaining are Anglo (which is what I am). The stores do tend to sell lots of junk, but the food is amazing (look for the grilled seafood platters which are prepared outdoors and in) and at night they have live music. It is unbelievably crowded and fun, and completely safe. The bathroom situation, when I was there, was tough, though -- not nearly enough. There are also whale watching trips and harbour tours (which might be in Spanish, you should check).

2. Re: Animal sanctuaries

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