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Who doesn’t love animals? Meeting new and exotic creatures is exciting and unforgettable! There are a number of attractions and locations in the Las Vegas area that offer hands-on, personal experiences with animals and nature. So if you’re looking to bring the animal lover of your family to meet their feature exotic species, here’s a quick list that highlights some of the best locations in Vegas where you can interact directly with exotic animals! It’s an excellent way for family and friends to spend the day together and create a memory all of you will cherish!
The Lion Habitat Ranch: Henderson, Nevada
The Lion Habitat Ranch is a non-profit animal sanctuary that specializes in the care and protection of lions and big cats. Open since 1989, the organization has strived to work towards the rescue and rehabilitation of lions. Not only do they house and care for lions, but the ranch also takes care of a number of different animals including exotic birds and giraffes. They offer an amazing Behind the Scenes Tour, where you get to spend 90 minutes with a trainer as you tour the property, see the staff in action while they care for the animals, and feed Ozzie the Giraffe some treats!
Take A Dive on the Wild Side! SeaQuest Las Vegas
SeaQuest Las Vegas is the ultimate land and sea adventure and is home to some of the most unique and interactive experiences among Nevada aquariums! SeaQuest Las Vegas offers the chance to meet 1,200 different animals from 300 different species. Here, you’ll see more than just fish and sea creatures. Discover mammals, birds, reptiles, insects, and amphibians from around the planet! This is a hands-on adventure, as visitors get to touch, feel, and feed animals from a variety of habitats around the world. Some of the special exotic animal encounters include:
- Asian Otter Interaction: During your time to feed the otters, you’ll get an educational overview of the otter species and habitat, then participate in an informational Q&A on how you can help save the otters in the wild!
- Coatimundi Interaction: Coatimundis are highly social and curious little mammals! And though they look like little raccoons, don’t let that fool you – Coatimundis tend to be a little more friendly and have some unique characteristics that separate them from their raccoon cousins! Meet Jack and Gus today and learn more about these fascinating creatures that reside in the Americas.
- Fishy Kisses: Dip your feet into a tank of fish that gently “kiss” your toes, removing dead skin cells.
- Crested Porcupine Encounter: Have you ever wondered what a porcupine actually feels like? Look no further – Meet Quilliam, the porcupine here at SeaQuest, and learn all about his unique species while hand-feeding him his favorite snacks!
- Snorkel With Stingrays: Bring your suit and towel and jump in the water with various rays, tropical fish, and non-threatening sharks for an ultimate up-close animal experience.
- Wallaby Encounter: You’ll Wallaby Here for This! Step right into the Grasslands of the Australian Outback when you hang out with a Wallaby friend! Closely related to the kangaroo, wallabies are incredible animals who love to hop, skip, and jump into your heart. You’ll be able to feed, pet, and even snag a selfie with these bouncy little creatures.
Camel Safari Las Vegas
Camel Safari is located an hour north of Las Vegas, but worth the drive for some fascinating animal encounters. You’ll get up close and personal with camels and exotic animals alike! They offer guided safari tours where you can ride a camel, ride the Safari train, or drive an ATV! They have over 40+ camels who call the Las Vegas desert home! You’ll learn from an ambassador about the animals and be guided by the keepers to encounter some exotic animals. These safaris are 2-hour guided, interpreted tours. They also offer evening VIP Sunset Safaris – ideal for family gatherings or group events. You’ll watch a stunning Mojave Desert sunset while roasting marshmallows over a fire. The views are pretty spectacular and make for a perfect backdrop for photo shoots, weddings, family reunions, corporate retreats, bachelor/bachelorette parties, birthday parties, and more!
Shark Reef at Mandalay Bay
Come face-to-face with some of the world’s most fascinating and exotic creatures at the Shark Reef at Mandalay Bay. This Vegas aquarium is home to thousands of animals, including sawfish, giant rays, endangered green sea turtles, piranha, jellyfish, and rare golden crocodiles. Shark Reef at Mandalay Bay is located in the Mandalay Bay Hotel and Casino.
Special Encounter Options:
- Shark Reef Tunnel: Get a 360° view of the vast marine wildlife habitat in the Shark Reef tunnel.
- Touch Pool: Dip your hand in the touch pool to feel the beautiful stingray and horseshoe crabs. You don’t get to swim with stingrays like the SeaQuest encounter, but still a fun activity.
- SCUBA: Visitors can schedule a SCUBA dive with the sharks as long as they meet the following requirements:
- Must be over the age of 18
- Must be SCUBA certified
- Must schedule the dive more than 72 hours in advance
- Diving with sharks costs $650 per person or $1,000 per couple.
Siegfried and Roy’s Dolphin Habitat
Located at the Mirage Casino and Hotel Las Vegas, Siegfried & Roy’s Secret Garden and Dolphin Habitat allow you to come face-to-face with some of nature’s most exotic and majestic creatures! Visitors can watch bottlenose dolphins swim and play in the Dolphin Habitat. Or there’s the viewing of white lions, tigers, panthers, and leopards in the Secret Garden. Visiting hours can be limited, so check the hotel website for details on how to get tickets or admission information.
When it comes to exotic animal encounters in the Las Vegas area, these are just some of our favorite picks to choose from! Not only does the Las Vegas Strip have some options to choose from, but many aquariums and zoos are located just off the strip and beyond, and all of these attractions will surely bring the adventure of a lifetime for your family! For the BEST animal interactions in the state, check out the SeaQuest Las Vegas website. You can book your special exotic animal encounter today!