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From Rocky Ridgeline Hikes to Private Safari Tours, The Living Desert Makes for the Perfect Day Trip

Written By: Kaylin Waizinger
Photography Provided By: The Living Desert Zoo and Gardens Palm Desert day trip

Being outdoors is everything right now. Whether it’s dining al fresco, taking an outdoor fitness class or enjoying a movie under the stars, there is no safer way to have fun these days. But if you’re looking to switch things up, The Living Desert Zoo and Gardens in Palm Desert offers a wonderfully wild experience for people of all ages! From feeding giraffes to exploring the zoo’s three nature preserve hiking trails, there is so much to see and do. So plan your day trip because The Living Desert Zoo and Gardens has resumed its regular park hours and is ready and prepared for your return!

The Living Desert Zoo and Gardens now opens at 8 a.m. for both members and non-members with full zoo amenities opening at 9 a.m. The Zoo will remain open until 5 p.m. with the last admission at 4 p.m. “As an outdoor facility, our visitors can enjoy time with their families and see some amazing desert animals. We continue to follow the latest guidelines from State and County health departments to keep our guests, staff and animals safe,” says Allen Monroe, president and CEO of The Living Desert.

Hiking trails are also now open for you and your crew to explore. Choose from a variety of trails of varying degrees of difficulty and embark on your journey as you relish in the zoo’s natural beauty. The zoo offers three nature preserve hiking trails to explore: The Discovery Loop (a brief, quarter-mile interlude), The Adventure Loop (a mile-long trail through desert wash habitat) and The Wilderness Loop (a five-mile hike up or down a boulder-strewn canyon and along a rocky ridgeline with stunning and far-reaching vistas).

Native Knowledge: The trails are accessible with paid admission or an annual membership and are open every day (except Christmas Day) through May 31, 2021.

Before or after your hike, be sure to check out the all-new Australian Adventures. In this immersive habitat, you’ll find wallabies roaming freely, budgies flying above, emu playing and kookaburras singing! Other native Australian species such as tawny frogmouth, bettong, echidna and blue-tongued skink also dwell in this unique habitat.

You can also get the full Living Desert Zoo experience with a Private Safari Tour. The two-hour tour includes admission to the park, a personal guide, giraffe feeding and a private shuttle. Your guide will stop at every major habitat and provide info on the park’s history along with interesting animal facts. For details and to schedule a safari tour, visit www.livingdesert.org.

The Living Desert Zoo and Gardens
47900 Portola Ave
Palm Desert, CA 92260
760.346.5694 Palm Desert day trip