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“Our grandson thinks Riverbank Zoo is the best place in the world!”

Riverbanks Zoo and Botanical Garden
Ranked #1 of 109 things to do in Columbia
Certificate of Excellence
More attraction details
Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: More than 3 hours
Owner description: Riverbanks Zoo and Garden is home to nearly 2,000 animals that represent more than 350 species from around the world. A visit to the Zoo will play host to an array of wild adventures from a diving expedition on a Pacific coral reef to a safari through the plains of Africa to an interactive Outback encounter with a flock of sociable lorikeets. The Botanical Garden boasts 70-acres of unparalleled beauty and is considered one of the America's best public gardens. Dramatic and themed gardens showcase more than 4,300 species of native and exotic plants, providing a living classroom for gardeners and non-gardeners alike. The Garden also is the gateway to natural river views and spectacular valley overlooks. In addition, guests can view structural remains dating back to the early 1800s with South Carolina's textile industry and the Civil War.
Level Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“Our grandson thinks Riverbank Zoo is the best place in the world!”
Reviewed March 27, 2012

Our grandson loves the zoo so much so that we got a grandparents membership so that we could go anytime we wanted to. We live about an hour away so we can go and spend a few hours and not feel like we wasted money for not staying longer. We catch the feeding times and ride the train over in the farm area. We also love going over to the botanical garden side and looking at all the beautiful plants and flowers.

If you haven't visited Riverbanks before it's worth the trip.

Visited March 2012
Thank Luvmyboxer05
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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2,228 reviews from our community

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Charleston, South Carolina
Level Contributor
15 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
“Can't wait to feed the giraffes again!”
Reviewed March 27, 2012

Riverbanks Zoo is truly beautiful, but the best part is how close you can get to a number of the animals. For $2 (worth every cent), you can purchase lettuce and feed the giraffes by hand. Both the giraffe babies & parents are gentle - and it's an wonderful experience for both kids and adults. It's also a treat to get nectar in the aviary and have wild tropical birds land on your hands or shoulder to drink out of a little cup.
They have plenty of places to rest, beautiful landscaping, decent food in the cafe, and (as expected) a terrific variety of animals. I've been 3 times in the last year and see something new each time, from bears cooling off with frozen watermelons to lions fighting over toys like 2-year olds. Just love it!

Visited January 2012
1 Thank birdgirl2010
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
White Lake, North Carolina
Level Contributor
62 reviews
6 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 27 helpful votes
“Nice Place”
Reviewed March 27, 2012

One of the best Zoo's I have been to!...Will go again at some time!

Visited April 2011
1 Thank coach38nc
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Mount Pleasant, SC
Level Contributor
48 reviews
15 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
“Great Family Fun”
Reviewed March 27, 2012

Love the Zoo! My 8 year old son and I did the ropes course and had a blast. Feeding the giraffes was incredible! Price is very good for what you get.

Visited February 2012
Thank MooreOnRunning
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Evans, Georgia
Level Contributor
38 reviews
14 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 31 helpful votes
“Great day at the zoo with the kids.”
Reviewed March 26, 2012

My wife and I took our 11 and 4 year olds to the zoo on a Saturday morning. The drive to Columbia, SC, is only about 70 miles down I-20. This trip featured our first road trip flat tire that left us on the side of the interstate. Luckily, Wayne's Auto in Aiken quickly arrived to get us rolling on a donut, and Mick's Tire patched us up in just a few minutes. Disaster was averted.
We made it to the zoo around 11:00 a.m. and were waved into overflow parking by the attendants. I thought this was a bad sign, but inside the zoo the crowds were really not bad. We purchased tickets in advance and didn't have to stand in the ticket lines at the gate. The kids enjoyed the monkeys, gorilla, lions, tiger, elephants and other species that they normally would never encounter. This zoo also has plenty of shade, which was welcome on our visit. We spent about three hours there, but left when storm clouds started to gather.
Lunch was expensive, and so was the ice cream, but we splurged and had a great time.

Visited March 2012
1 Thank fenn138
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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