The San Diego Zoo Wildlife Alliance launched its expansive 3.2-acre Denny Sanford Wildlife Explorers Basecamp on Friday, bringing families up close to nature.
According to the San Diego Zoo Wildlife Alliance, the Wildlife Explorers Basecamp was designed to appeal to a broader audience while still maintaining its place in the hearts of young explorers. Interactive play opportunities are available with oversized species-themed sculptures, microscopes, touch screens, animation, and dynamic lighting fixtures in new buildings.
There will be four types of wildlife, such as Rainforests, Wild Woods, Marsh Meadows, and Desert Dunes, all with unique features that give guests a multi-ecosystem experience.
The Rainforest area of Basecamp is centered around the 10,000-square-foot McKinney Family Spineless Marvels, a building featuring arachnids, a coconut crab habitat, and a real-life beehive with a large honeycomb.
At the neighboring Rady Ambassadors Headquarters, guests may encounter a wide range of animals, including a two-toed sloth and a prehensile-tailed porcupine.
The Wild Woods is reserved for wildlife species including coatis and features the Prebys Foundation Discovery Bridge and 20-foot tall structure designed to look like an ancient oak tree. According to the San Diego Zoo Wildlife Alliance, it is a dynamic nature-play tree structure located adjacent to a squirrel monkey habitat that offers multiple points of access to guests.
Water-play extends into this woodland-themed area, with a waterfall grotto and splash pad, water jets and a stream, and a bluff area for exploration. Marsh Meadows is an outdoor watery habitat, designed with diverse plant life designed to evoke a variety of habitats, such as marshes, swamps, and estuaries that affect the health of our planet.
A two-story herpetology and ichthyology structure is included in this area, offering 7,000 square feet of immersive environments, digital media, learning opportunities, and educational classroom spaces created to engage guests of all ages. The wildlife here includes snakes, amphibians, crocodilians, turtles, and lizards, including endangered Fijian iguanas.
A desert wash-themed area is available to Desert Dunes that has boulder play opportunities for climbing, scrambling, and hopping.
It is constructed on the site of the former Children’s Zoo, which opened in 1957 and recent years featured a petting paddock with sheep, goats, and other farm animals and a play structure.
The Wildlife Explorers Basecamp is constructed on the site of the former Children’s Zoo, which opened in 1957, and featured a petting paddock with sheep, goats, and other farm animals and a play structure.