Do you love animals? If you do, why not bring the whole family to the Kansas City Zoo? This is the place for people who love wildlife. Located in the historic Swope Park, the Kansas City Zoo is 202-acres big and houses over a thousand animals.
The zoo sits on a land that was donated by philanthropist and real estate magnate Thomas Swope in 1896. Swope was 70 years old when he gave away 1,334 acres of land to Kansas City to be used as a public park. Through the years, the park has grown to over 1,805 acres and is one of the largest city parks in America. It boasts picnic areas, an outdoor theater, two golf courses and of course, the zoo.
The zoo is composed of different sections, namely, Australia, Tiger Trail (Asia), Tropics (an indoor rain forest), KidZone (where you’ll find the Discovery Barn and an Endangered Species Carousel), and the 100 acre-African Plains.
Among the many attractions at the zoo, one of the most well-known to locals and most loved is Nikita, a four-year-old polar bear who was born on November 21, 2006 at the Toledo Zoo. He inhabits an arctic adventure area at Polar Bear Passage. Named after a Russian researcher, Nikita weighs around 750 pounds and entertains visitors by swimming in his 140,000-gallon, 65-degree pool.
To learn more about Nikita and other interesting animals, visit the Kansas City Zoo, open daily from 9:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Admission is $6 for all ages while Friends of the Zoo members are free.