Palm Desert’s Living Desert Zoo and Gardens on Condé Nast Traveler and USA Today ‘10 Best’ zoos list

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Desert conservation through preservation, education and appreciation

The Living Desert Zoo and Gardens, formerly the Living Desert Museum, is a desert botanical garden and a zoo located in Palm Desert. They are in the Sonoran Desert of the Coachella Valley and Santa Rosa Mountains foothills near Palm Springs.

The Living Desert was established in 1970 by several trustees of the Palm Springs Desert Museum who foresaw the impact that resort development would have on their local desert ecosystem. This foresight led to an interpretive nature trail and preserve in Palm Desert.

For nearly five decades, The Living Desert has been preserving, conserving and interpreting the desert…

For nearly five decades, The Living Desert has been engaged in the important work of preserving, conserving and interpreting the desert and all its varied plant and animal life. Even as they take immense pride in their accomplishments over the last 45-plus years, they remain as dedicated as ever to the goals that initially inspired them.

The Living Desert Zoo and Gardens is a nonprofit, accredited member of the Association of Zoos and Aquariums, ensuring the highest standards of all aspects of animal care, education, conservation, public service and operations. The Zoo has been a top attraction in the Palm Springs area for nearly 50 years.

They offer a Total Adventure Package. It’s all-day unlimited and includes:

  • Giraffe feedings
  • Carousel rides
  • Camel rides
  • Lorikeets and feedings

Season hours

Open daily October 1–May 31, 9am to 5pm, last admission at 4pm. Closed December 25.

Summer hours

Open daily June 1–September 30, 8am to 1:30pm, last admission at 1pm.

Entrance

  • General admission $20
  • Children (3-12) $18
  • Children under 3 free
  • Total adventure pass $20
  • VIP tours/groups contact for pricing.

The Living Desert Zoo and Gardens is located at 47900 Portola Ave. in Palm Desert.

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Lynne Tucker is a travel writer and photojournalist based in Palm Desert.

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Lynne Tucker is a travel writer and photojournalist based in Palm Desert.

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