While staying in Virginia Beach you can take a short drive to the Virginia Zoo. The zoo offers free parking, cheap admission and a child friendly environment. The zoo appears to have a wide range of visitors, whether if you’re a couple on date or a family with children, you should find the zoo enjoyable.

The zoo is positioned next to the Lafayette Park and the Lafayette river and covers 53 acres of land. Virginia Zoo is home to nearly 400 animals, which range from tortoises to Giraffes.

When you first enter the zoo directly in front of you is a large water fountain area for children to run through and cool off in, so a towel or change of clothes is useful to have at hand. The water is a very refreshing relief from the hot weather that Virginia is known for.

The zoo is divided into different sections called Gardens, there are 9 different gardens each with their own theme. Refreshments can be found in each Garden and there is a large restaurant in the African Village Garden.

The Barnyard Garden offers hands-on experience with some of the smaller occupants of the zoo; there are pigs, goats, and even rabbits for you to pet. The goats were my favorite; they always have so much character.

The Virginia Zoo has an area dedicated to Africa, the area takes up 8 acres of the park and is the home to Lions, Elephants, Rhinoceros, Meerkats, Giraffe, Zebra and many more animals and reptiles. When you visit this area it feels like you are walking through the rocky paths of Africa, The path takes you around the Lion pen and past the Meerkats and reptiles, and it offers great view points across the African fields that house the bigger animals.

The Virginia Zoo is a nice size, you can easily see all the attractions in a few hours, giving you plenty of time to do lots of other things in the Virginia Beach area.