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Our visit was hosted by Bearizona Wildlife Park. As always, all thoughts and opinions are 100% my own.
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A couple years ago, when we were visiting Williams, Arizona to ride the Polar Express, we decided to take a short day trip to see the Grand Canyon. On the way out of Williams, we spotted a sign for a drive-thru wildlife park called Bearizona. A drive-thru zoo sounded like something the girls would love! Unfortunately, we didn’t have time to visit on that particular trip. So I saved the idea in the back of my mind for the next time we ventured up that way. SO when Hubby and I decided to take a family camping trip to the Grand Canyon, I made sure to add Bearizona to our to-do list, and I have to tell you, it was even better than I imagined!
Bearizona is a drive thru wildlife park that invites visitors to drive through the Arizona wilderness, viewing the varied collection of North American animals from the comfort of their own car. You can cruise through the 3-mile enclosure at your own pace, while getting to view amazing animals like mountain goats, wolves, bison, and (of course) bear!
While each enclosure allows the animals ample room to roam, they’re not so big that you’re unable to locate them. We were able to clearly see every single animal advertised. But, if you did happen to miss a sighting, just drive through again! The park offers unlimited drive-thrus so you have plenty of opportunity to catch a glimpse of the wonderful wildlife offered!
The girls had a great time finding and talking about all the cool animals they saw! Sometimes their little eagle eyes spotted the wildlife before we could!
And, of course, there were plenty of bears! Park rules tell you to roll up your windows in the bear and wolf enclosures, just to be safe, but these bear were more than happy to just lay around and play with each other. After we finished the drive-thru portion, we were greeted by even more fun – Fort Bearizona!
Fort Bearizona is the park’s walk through area. It’s just like a small zoo. Here you can see elk, jaguar, bobcats, and more. Prior to arriving at the park, I had no idea that there was more to the park than just the drive-thru. But the walk through area was just as (if not more) fun than our little cruise thru!
I think our family’s favorite part was watching and interacting the junior Grizzly bears. They acted just like kids. Wrestling each other, running around, and climbing trees!
They even appear to occasionally interact with the visitors. We saw them waving to onlookers, so our girls had to try to get a wave too.
If you get the munchies, Bearizona offers food at their restaurant, Canyonlands, or more snack-bar type fare at the Bearizona Grill. I also spotted a handful of food trucks offering things like street tacos, coffee, and chocolate.
Of course, if you’re on a budget (or a special diet), Bearizona also offers a designated picnic area to sit and enjoy a meal brought from home.
Of course, what trip would be complete without a walk through their massive gift shop! You know that we all needed some souvenirs to remind us of our fun adventure!
Throughout the day there may be impromptu animal encounters around Fort Bearizona. These encounters are not on any set schedule, so keep an eye out (and up) and prepare for the unexpected. It may just be a Bearizona animal keeper with a small reptile answering questions as you walk the paths or a giant stork flying above your head. We caught the tail end of an encounter with a skunk as we were exiting the park. They’re actually pretty cute!
While we didn’t get to take one, Bearizona also offers Wild Bus Ride Tours. This adventure allows guests to hop on the 50-passenger bus, which doesn’t have windows, and take a drive through the park with a Bearizona staff member as their guide. The tour is offered free of charge, but it is strictly on a first come first serve basis.
Ticket prices range from $20-$25 per child and $30-$35 per adult (depending on weekday vs. weekend). It’s not an inexpensive trip, but I truly believe it’s worth every penny! We’ll for sure be visiting Bearizona again!