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“Fantastic, uplifting, must do”

Turpentine Creek Wildlife Refuge
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: 2-3 hours
Owner description: "With over 100 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 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 are available from 10am until 4pm (Summer) or 3pm (Winter). The refuge is open year round (except Christmas Day) from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.."
Reviewed June 13, 2013

This is a refuge for mostly big cats rescued - again mostly - from private owners. Yes people really do try to keep full grown tigers in their homes! Here you will see many tigers, lions, cougars, bobcats and other big cats now living a good life and being well cared for. We went on a tour just before 4pm and so were there for the feeding at 5pm which added to the experience. Oh - and don't miss Bam Bam the grizzly bear - he is worth the entry fee alone! We found the visit really uplifting and would wholeheartedly recommend it.

Thank pacuthbertson
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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1,484 - 1,488 of 1,788 reviews

Reviewed June 13, 2013

The work done by this Refuge is top notch. We always find it sad to see animals in cages but when you find out what some of these have experienced, and the limited space available, temporary cages can be forgiven. Much work is planned to give these animals a better life when space and money allow. Many animals are already roaming in larger areas and it is well worth a visit.

Thank Pictureseer
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 10, 2013

Well you won't find the Wizard of Oz here, but you will find a dedicated staff of young college interns taking very good care of abandoned, abused, or neglected "Big Cats". Each animal has a name and a story that will break your heart while marveling at the sheer stupidity or cruelty of man. Glad there's a place for these beautiful animals to live out their natural lives being well cared for with generous contributions of meat from Tyson and Walmart.

The gift shop's back door leads to the upper compound of concrete and cages with animals waiting for transfer to the more natural environment down the hill. A walking tour takes you in between large grassy fenced areas with a concrete, fenced compound with a protected sleeping area. The cats and bears were confined to these because of recent bad weather. We were on the last tour of the day at 4 pm. While touring the interns started feeding the animals in the grassy area. By the time we walked back to the concrete compound, they were ready to feed the animals in this area. It was really awesome to watch the whole process. Highly recommend this refuge. Oh, they also have canvas covered cabins for staying the night.

Thank Teresa L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 9, 2013

What can you say! It was wonderfull! We camped here for three nites and want to go back.
At nite we would sit around the campfire and listen to the cats roar. This is one place you have to visit if your in the area. If you have kids all the better. The staff was so helpfull with any ???
I can not put into words what a great place this is and what a great service these folks are doing for these animals. Everything in this park is a rescue. Were going back this year.

Thank David D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 7, 2013

An amazing place that is both fun and educational. It's an awesome feeling know that just by your visit you are helping these magnificent animals. The staff and volunteers at the refuge are to commended for their hard work and dedication to the care of the animals. It is a must see if your in the area

Thank Amy G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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