Animal Experiences In and Around Atlanta

7 Animal Experiences In and Around Atlanta

When I think of places to have animal experiences in the Atlanta area, my go-to is either Zoo Atlanta or the Georgia Aquarium. As a member of both, I visit them frequently. However, there are many other places to enjoy animals in the surrounding areas of Atlanta! We’ll kick off with the Zoo and Aquarium but then take a further dive into some smaller farm experiences, drive-thru experiences, and some feeding experiences around the Atlanta area.

Animal Experiences In and Around Atlanta

Zoo Atlanta

800 Cherokee Avenue SE, Atlanta, GA 30315

Zoo Atlanta is home to many animals including our beloved panda bears, orangutans, gorillas, lions, and elephants. There are giraffe feedings daily but I recommend trying to make it to the morning feeding around 10:00 am. In the afternoons we’ve encountered some sassy giraffes who are too full from previous feedings and enrichment. The zoo has a playground, a train, a carousel, and for the older children they have a treetop trail. During warmer weather bring a change of clothes and/or bring your kids in their bathing suits so they can enjoy the spray-ground on property. I love Zoo Atlanta, we always have a great time no matter the time of year.

Georgia Aquarium

225 Baker Street Northwest, Atlanta 30313

Photo of Diego the sea lion, courtesy of Georgia Aquarium

Georgia Aquarium is my favorite place to visit but I have an affinity for marine life. Experience the dolphin or sea lion shows, gaze at the gentle giants of the deep in Ocean Voyager, or for a thrill check out the new shark experience at Georgia Aquarium. Georgia Aquarium is also home to some of our cold water friends such as beluga, sea otter, and penguins. There is a stingray touch area on the second floor as well as educational halls to walk through.

The Art Barn

208 Roper Road, Canton, GA 30115

The Art Barn is a quaint little farm owned by the wonderful Farmer Sue. She hosts playdates where children can go to learn, pet donkeys, sheep, goats, and ponies. She also hosts Unicorn Days where Farmer Sue’s magical ponies turn into unicorns! The kids can take enchanted unicorn rides, become acquainted with the other animals on the property and participate in a craft. She is always offering different types of events and playdates throughout the year. The farm is small and personal but the fun is big!

7 Animal Experiences In and Around Atlanta

Pettit Creek Farms

337 Cassville Road, Cartersville, GA 30120

Pettit Creek Farms is home to a few exotic animals such as giraffes, camels, zebras, and ostrich. They offer a drive-thru experience and bags of feed for the animals while you drive through. At the end of your tour enjoy pony rides, giraffe feedings, and even a petting zoo!

Yellow River Wildlife Sanctuary

4525 US 78, Lilburn, GA 30047

Enjoy wildlife such as bear, bison, servals, and even maybe spot a kinkajou! Formally known as the Yellow River Game Ranch, this sanctuary is now home to recovering wildlife who were unable to be re-homed after the closure of the Game Ranch. The new owners have made major repairs and improvements to the sanctuary with the health and happiness of its residents in mind. Yellow River Wildlife Sanctuary is a walk-through experience. Feed cups are available for purchase to use in their Petting Yard.

Chattahoochee Nature Center

9135 Willeo Road, Roswell, GA 30075

The Chattahoochee Nature Center is located across the street from the Chattahoochee Riverbank. It is home to a variety of owls, eagles and you may even spot the resident Beaver! Inside they have many types of river fish, reptiles, and the sweetest little opossum. Here you can also experience the walking trails and beautiful views throughout the property. In the winter, enjoy the Enchanted Woodland Trail featuring fairy and troll houses along the path. In the summer, they offer a Butterfly House experience.

Wild Animal Safari

1300 Oak Grove Road, Pine Mountain, GA 31822

Georgia’s Wild Animal Safari is home to 65 types of exotic animals. Here, they offer drive-thru tours, bus tours, and walking trails. The main attraction is the 3.5-mile long drive-thru tour where you may purchase feed bags to feed the animals on your journey through the property.

Atlanta Safari Park

6210 GA-326, Commerce, GA 30530

Atlanta Safari Park opened in the  Spring of 2023. They are located in Northeast Georgia, just off highway I-85. The Park features 156 acres of free roaming habitat, with animals from all over the world! The Drive-Thru Safari, with two miles of roads, takes guests approximately one hour to complete. Following your safari, explore the walk-thru portion of the park where guests can get out and explore the free-flight bird aviary, giraffe exhibit, petting zoo, and giftshop.

North Georgia Wildlife Park and Safari

2912 Paradise Valley Rd, Cleveland, GA 30528

North Georgia Wildlife Park is home to over 80 Species of animals that you can experience up close and personal.  They reside in naturalistic habitats and receive a receive a variety of enrichment by their keepers. Meet the babies, meet a sloth, howl with wolves and more!


Did we miss any animal experiences? Let us know in the comments below. And be sure to check out Atlanta Mom’s other guides for fun things to do in and around Atlanta!