Friday, July 18, 2008

Palm Beach Zoo

Jason and I grew up in Southern California. We first left the state in September 1999 for Chicago, Illinois. When we arrived, people would ask us (in polite conversation) about where we were from and if we had ever visited... (insert amazing site, attraction, park, historical site, etc.). Most of the time, we had to answer (rather sheepishly) that although we had heard of almost every amazing site in California, we hadn't really taken the time or the initiative to enjoy or appreciate our state. So we decided, right then and there, that wherever we lived, we were going to be TOTAL tourists. We move a lot, and we wanted our kids to have amazing experiences and adventures wherever they were. So we really go out of our way to explore and discover every place we live. Since Illinois, we've lived in Nevada, Texas, and now Florida. And we still try to enrich our lives by seeking out adventure wherever we go.

When we first moved here to sunny South Florida, we thought we were only going to be here a year. So, I was trying to shove as much "Florida" into my kids lives as possible...and I was sad because there were just so many things that I wanted to do that I wasn't going to have time to do, ya' know? But life evolves, and plans change, and now it appears that we are going to be here for quite awhile.

I thought that knowing that we had several more years to enjoy Florida would slow me down a bit. However, I find that I am just as passionate about exploring and enjoying our life/area/state as I ever was.

Our most recent escapade was to visit the Palm Beach Zoo. It is about an hour from where we live...but well worth the trip. It is a small zoo...but really well cared for and designed. And the best part was the Awesome Fountain for the kids to play in between exhibits. The zoo was designed with the fountain in the middle, so you could take a path through, say, the South American Tropics, and end up back at the fountain to splash and cool off. Then you could take a different path to a different exhibit, and end up back at the center to cool off again!! It was Great!!

There was a new exhibit, the Tropics of the Americas, which was ABSOLUTELY fabulous. It really felt like you were in Mayan ruins.

And I was highly impressed with the Florida Wetlands exhibit as well. When you live here...sometimes you start to think you've seen all the alligators you can possibly see.

But I never felt that way through the whole was really well put together, covering a very large scope and variety of Florida wildlife. It was great.

We had just gone on a field trip last week to Big Cypress National Preserve, and I genuinely felt like I was back in the cypress forest.

It was fantastic...and I would recommend it to anyone. So if you're vacationing in South Florida sometime, be sure to put it on your list!!

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