The Cheyenne Mountain Zoo is one of the most popular attractions in Colorado Springs. This is for good reason, because this zoo offers a truly unique experience. Just be sure to wear comfortable shoes, as it’s located on the side of Cheyenne Mountain. Not only will you have the chance to experience countless animals, but you will also get in a great workout.
The Cheyenne Mountain Zoo goes above and beyond for their guests. For instance, there are cooling stations in the summer, plenty of interactive exhibits, and also opportunities to have unique experiences with animals. Here is a look at the available custom animal experiences at the Cheyenne Mountain Zoo.
Animal Art Experience
Create art with one of the animal residents at the zoo. Some animals at the zoo have been taught to paint by using positive reinforcement and operant conditioning. The animals enjoy creating art and it’s a true treat to assist a painting session with one of the animals. Participants also get to go home with great memories and a custom piece of artwork created by an animal. You can choose to paint with reptiles, birds, small mammals, orangutans, and even elephants.
Meet an Animal
Join one of the keepers at the zoo to get close to and interact with an animal at the zoo. Book a time to meet your favorite animal. Here are all of the opportunities to meet animals at the zoo.
- Safari Trail Tour
- Barn Owl Meet and Greet
- African Lion Encounter
- Amur Leopard Encounter
- V.I.P. Small Group Tours
- Opossum Meet and Greet
- Amur Tiger Encounter
- Porcupine Meet and Greet
- Elephant Encounter
- Giraffe Encounter
- Creature Connections
- Screech Owl Meet and Greet
- Grizzly Bear Encounter
- Skunk Meet and Greet
- Ground Hornbill Encounter
- Sloth Experiences
- Marsupial Encounter
- Meerkat Encounter
- Orangutan Encounter
- Reptile Encounter
- River Otter Encounter
- Rhino Encounter
- Tapir Encounter
- Zebra Encounter
Feed an Animal
Feeding animals at the Cheyenne Mountain Zoo is one of the most popular guest experiences. When you first walk into the zoo, you are greeted by the majestic giraffes. Anyone can feed them lettuce, as long as you purchase it from zoo employees. However, please leave your lettuce at home. It’s truly a treat to watch their long purple tongues grab the lettuce. Just know you may get a little slimed. In addition to feeding the giraffes, you can feed other animals. Most of the animal encounters listed above include the opportunity to feed the animal.
Connect with Keepers
There are several ways to spend some time with keepers at the zoo. Through these experiences, you can learn more about the animals and interact with them. One way is to participate in an internship. This is for students 18 and over and is a great way to see if zookeeping might be a good career choice.
The other way to connect with keepers is to participate in a Keeper Shadow. This is for anyone 12 years and over. Help a keeper with their duties, which may include diet preparations and health monitoring, exhibit preparations and upkeep, animal training and enrichment, and daily management considerations. You can choose to shadow a keeper for two hours or four hours. The two-hour option allows you to spend time in one animal area and the four-hour option allows you to spend time in two animal areas of your choice.
Here is a look at the animal area choices:
- Encounter Africa – elephants and rhino
- African Rift Valley 1 – Colobus monkeys, zebra, meerkats, Red River hogs, mountain tapirs, tortoises, vultures, and other birds
- African Rift Valley 2 – giraffes and lions
- Australia’s Outback and Scutes Family Gallery – wallabies, sloths, reptiles, budgies, and tree kangaroo
- Primate World – gorillas, orangutans, tamarins, siamangs, and naked mole rats
- Rocky Mountain Wild/Asian Highlands – grizzly bears, river otters, lynx, mountain lions, moose, wolves, Asiatic black bears, Amur leopards, Amur tigers
- Water’s Edge Africa – hippos, lemurs, penguins, warthogs, guinea pigs, guinea fowl
Take a Tour
If you want to have a more personalized zoo experience, consider a tour. There are three types of tours available. The first is the Safari Trail Tour. This allows you to get up close to several African Rift Valley animals. Guests will be able to walk through the back of the giraffe yard, have ground level giraffe viewing, and experience an encounter with vultures, Grant’s zebra, and an African spotted tortoise. Guests may also be able to feed and/or touch some of the animals.
A second tour option is V.I.P Small Group Tours. This tour includes zoo admission for the day, a guided overview of the zoo in a golf cart, a Safari Trail or Loft Exploration, giraffe feeding, and three behind the scenes experiences. You get to choose from these options:
- African lion, giraffe, or okapi
- Zebra or mountain tapir
- Reptile meet and greet, sloth, or marsupial meet
- Amur tiger, grizzly bear, North American river otters, or Alaska moose
- Elephant or rhino
- Hippo, warthog, or African penguin
The two final tours available are the Date Night Starlight Safari for adults over 21 and evening tours for you and your friends. Date nights are periodically available, so watch for available dates. Evening tours can be customized and are a great way to celebrate a birthday, graduation, or just spend time with friends and family. Each evening tour includes a private tour, an up-close meet and greet with an animal, feeding lettuce to the giraffes, and roasting s’mores.
Booking an Animal Experience at the Cheyenne Mountain Zoo
All of these experiences can be booked at the Cheyenne Mountain Zoo website. Find specific details, requirements, and costs for each encounter before booking. Some experiences offer discounts for members, while others do not. Whether you live in Colorado Springs and frequent the zoo often, or are visiting from out of state, these experiences create lasting memories.
Live in Colorado Springs
Colorado Springs is home to a variety of amazing attractions, just like the Cheyenne Mountain Zoo. If you are interested in making Colorado Springs your home, look to the local experts. Search for homes on our Best Colorado Springs Homes website and get in touch with Mark Main today.