It’s not unusual to spot or hear such wildlife as raccoons, loons, chipmunks, squirrels, turkeys, deer or a host of other creatures around Central Minnesota. But it is very unique to see such wildlife as zebras, camels, giraffes, water buffalo, kangaroos or coatimundi in this neck of the woods. These creatures and many more live at Safari North Wildlife Park in Brainerd and delight and entertain countless visitors every season.
The 2017 season opens May 15. The park is open seven days a week from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. until October 1. Individual tickets may be purchased per visit while a wide variety of season passes are available as well. (The last tickets of the day are sold at 5 p.m.) Parking is free.
Safari Wildlife Park’s mission is to promote life-long learning for everyone by enriching minds and fostering environmental respect while helping prepare visitors for a conservation future. Wildlife from five different continents is represented in the park. Kevin and Kelly Vogel, park directors, have more than 50 years of combined experience in the exotic animal field.
The park’s main goal is to provide positive experiences that last a lifetime with every visit no matter what age a visitor is. People are encouraged to come and see why generations of families remember Safari North when they visit Brainerd and to make lasting memories of their own. The park offers an up-close and personal experience where guests can marvel at wild wonders as they play, laugh and learn.
Visitors have the opportunity to feed giraffes and take camel rides. There is a barnyard and petting area in addition to a play area and a “dino dig”.
New exhibits this year include a waterfowl exhibit with a covered bridge to allow visitors to easily feed the ducks. More monkeys have been added to the exhibits, demonstrating their independent personalities. Visitors can also mine for jemstones using a mining sluice.
The Zoo Gift Shop and the Safari Snack Shack are available for visitors.