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“For those who don't like "zoos," this is your place!”

Chestatee Wildlife Preserve & Zoo
Reviewed 24 March 2014

We visited this rescue today for the first time. My 4-year-old son has been asking lots of questions about big cats, but we do not feel comfortable supporting big zoos and feel strongly about animals remaining in their natural habitat unless human intervention is necessary. We researched a few rescues around the Atlanta area and were pleased to find this one with so many large animals.

We were a little disappointed in the cats' enclosures, as they didn't seem to have a lot of space. But we did not see any of them nervously pacing, which is what we ALWAYS found at mainstream zoos. I certainly did not leave feeling sorry for them, which we have, unfortunately, experienced at other zoos.

The pathways were easy to walk, but the stroller was a little difficult to push. Many walkways are in bright sun, so wear sunscreen on a sunny day! There were plenty of shady spots, however, to have a picnic or just cool off.

We paid extra for the animal encounter ($100 for the whole family), which included a visit with a ball python, a bearded dragon, a chinchilla, the Savannnah Cat, and a baby alligator. The animals in the encounter can vary so you don't know what to expect. Because this was a special trip for my son's birthday, we didn't mind paying the extra. I think he learned a lot and enjoyed touching the animals. My husband and I certainly enjoyed holding them!

We got to see some of every type of animal that we expected. The zebra were not out much, and the exotic birds were housed for the winter. He turkeys were more fun than we expected, following us (from inside the fence, of course) and cacalling quite loudly! We happened to be around when the monkeys were fed and enjoyed watching the fallow deer greedily follow the caregiver around! We did me lap around the park, played on the playground, did the animal encounter, had a picnic lunch, and then did another abreviated lap (and saw new things this time!) in about 3 1/2 hours. The weather was perfect. The park was not crowded (Monday). It was a perfect day for us. If you are expecting something comparable to a big-city zoo, you'll be disappointed. If you are just looking for a simple way to see wild animals that are obviously well-cared for and content, you'll love it!

5  Thank LeAnnMT
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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"non profit"
in 7 reviews
"grizzly bear"
in 6 reviews
"feed the animals"
in 5 reviews
"money goes"
in 3 reviews
"run by volunteers"
in 2 reviews
"great animals"
in 2 reviews
"exotic birds"
in 2 reviews
"different areas"
in 2 reviews
"black beans"
in 3 reviews
"walk around"
in 3 reviews
"the owner"
in 7 reviews
"last weekend"
in 2 reviews
"north georgia"
in 6 reviews
"hard work"
in 2 reviews
"zebra"
in 32 reviews
"tiger"
in 30 reviews
"cw"
in 7 reviews
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82 - 86 of 147 reviews

Reviewed 21 March 2014

Don't get too exited about the cute tiger and lion cubs in the online pictures, they grew up! We came with the idea of showing the cubs to the kids and we were dissapointed. They are now big cats in cages as the rest. :(

1  Thank ZenFranky
This review is the subjective opinion of an individual traveller and not of TripAdvisor LLC nor of its partners.
Reviewed 13 March 2014

small cages for lions and tigers, animals very confined and animals obviously bored, not many animals out when we visited, so much potential for this zoo, would love to see a wider space for the animals to roam around and be free and more staff to care for these poor animals.

5  Thank 1588trololo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 4 March 2014

Found this wonderful wildlife preserve & zoo while on a day trip through the north Georgia area!
Pleasantly surprised. Have recommended this to friends!

2  Thank n0t_0ne_t0_c0mplain
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 24 February 2014

For being in the middle of no where, we didn't expect a whole lot at this zoo. The price was only $10, but sadly enough the price was too high for the experience we had. When we first arrived, we parked and looked for where to pay but couldn't find it. We were finally greeted buy a girl on a golf cart where we paid with a credit card and was provided with no receipt. Long story short, the whole process was very informal and the fact that we couldn't even receive a receipt was a little strange.


After the weird payment process, we continued on to see the animals, or should I say try to find the animals? We went through the trail and did not see the zebras, the chimpanzees, and many other cages were empty. The animals that were there were in pretty small cages at least 10 feet (probably more) from the viewpoint so it was difficult to see them even when they were there. ,


*** We talked to two separate workers and they were both nice, it was nothing to do with the staff or anything, just the zoo as a whole was not worth the time. Even the vending machines or the "Refreshments" as they called it were completely empty.

4  Thank Jake C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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