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  1. #1

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    San Diego Zoo Safari Park 3/13 [Photo Heavy]

    Yesterday I took a trip to the San Diego Zoo Safari Park. My main focus was to see the Butterfly Jungle, which is a seasonal exhibit running from April 8-May 7. My last trip was at the beginning of February, and since then a lot of progress has been made.


    A new marquee for the park has been put on top of the entry building. Any traces of the park's old name, "San Diego Wild Animal Park", have been removed.


    Inside the building, new animal graphics hanging from the ceiling have been put up.


    An oversized map covers the space on a wall between two restrooms. The map is new since my last visit and is in the same style as the park's counterpart, the San Diego Zoo.


    This sign was situated above the turnstiles. Butterfly cutouts like these were all around the park and effectively led people to the Butterfly Jungle.


    New for this year were "Fastpasses" of sorts for entry to the Butterfly Jungle. Booths around the park that donned this sign gave people the passes which have a time printed on them to advise when to come and line up to enter the exhibit.


    A look at some of the varieties of backs of the passes, and the front as well. The backs sported different animals.

    To be continued: Construction of a new exhibit, a look at some of the changes happening around the park, inside the Butterfly Jungle, a look at the beauty of the park, and more!

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  2. #2

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    Re: San Diego Zoo Safari Park 3/13 [Photo Heavy]

    Last year we were a bit disappointed in the Butterfly Jungle... lots of people, long lines etc. It was "fun" but a bit overhyped. Hopefully the Fastpass system somewhat displaces this line. Is there an additional charge for the Fastpass?

    I know a lot of people (myself included) aren't thrilled about the new name. However if the new name brings in more people, which ultimately helps the animals, then I can understand why they did it.

    Did you happen to stop at any of the Ostrich ranches? I was tempted to get the in-laws a massive Easter egg but I backed off when I realized they wanted $25 an egg... still a fun photo op though!
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  3. #3

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    Re: San Diego Zoo Safari Park 3/13 [Photo Heavy]

    Quote Originally Posted by techskip View Post
    Last year we were a bit disappointed in the Butterfly Jungle... lots of people, long lines etc. It was "fun" but a bit overhyped. Hopefully the Fastpass system somewhat displaces this line. Is there an additional charge for the Fastpass?

    I know a lot of people (myself included) aren't thrilled about the new name. However if the new name brings in more people, which ultimately helps the animals, then I can understand why they did it.

    Did you happen to stop at any of the Ostrich ranches? I was tempted to get the in-laws a massive Easter egg but I backed off when I realized they wanted $25 an egg... still a fun photo op though!
    Yes... Having gone two years in a row now, this system was MUCH more efficient. The line to get in once I had returned at my allotted time was no more than five minutes, where as the year before I had to wait around two hours. The "Fastpass" was free, which was very nice... There was no "standby" line.

    Honestly, I am not sure if it is the new name that is bringing people in. For a Wednesday, I'd say it was more crowded than usual, but I think that was mainly due to the Butterfly Jungle. Either way, it is apparent in most areas of the park that they are attempting to make it more "clean", and by that I mean more refined and well-kept. It is obvious which parts they have revisited recently and which parts have been mainly untouched for quite some time.

    I did stop by an outdoor market on my way out to see some of the ostrich and emu eggs, but unfortunately they only had hollow ones for sale. Their size is impressive indeed, but I agree that the price runs a bit too high to be worth purchasing.

    More pictures are on their way in a bit.

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  4. #4

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    Re: San Diego Zoo Safari Park 3/13 [Photo Heavy]

    A look at construction...


    A new "flying fox" exhibit is under construction.






    It is located next to the Spongebob Squarepants 4D simulator.

    More to come!

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    Re: San Diego Zoo Safari Park 3/13 [Photo Heavy]

    On with the report...


    Posts like this one were situated around the park and sported simple icons to show what was nearby and where to go.


    The lion exhibit was undergoing renovations.





    Up next... the Butterfly Jungle!

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  6. #6

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    Re: San Diego Zoo Safari Park 3/13 [Photo Heavy]

    Keep posting!

  7. #7

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    Re: San Diego Zoo Safari Park 3/13 [Photo Heavy]

    Quote Originally Posted by Bryce05 View Post
    Keep posting!
    This week has been hectic to say the least, so I apologize... On with the TR!

    A lady wearing a headband covered in fake butterflies welcoms everyone to the Butterfly Jungle and takes their "Timed Tickets". It takes place inside an aviary, but most of the birds that usually inhabit it are removed for the exhibit. The small queue of people that are waiting to enter go through a small cave that displays these boards to pass the time:



    ...And also houses a few insects and small frogs. Fake butterflies hang overhead:



    In groups of about ten, people are admitted into the actual aviary... Where they witness amazing butterflies of all colors and sizes! Enjoy this sample of the MANY pictures I took... I can post more if you would like




















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  8. #8

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    Re: San Diego Zoo Safari Park 3/13 [Photo Heavy]

    I love the butterfly photos! Beautiful!

    I think the main thing that always bothered me about the Wild Animal Park is the layout. The hills can be a killer, and trying to get to see certain things like the tigers... not an easy task!

    SD Zoo just has a lot more for the same price. Had it not been for our AP's I likely wouldn't have bothered with the Wild Animal Park.
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  9. #9

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    Re: San Diego Zoo Safari Park 3/13 [Photo Heavy]

    Quote Originally Posted by techskip View Post
    I love the butterfly photos! Beautiful!

    I think the main thing that always bothered me about the Wild Animal Park is the layout. The hills can be a killer, and trying to get to see certain things like the tigers... not an easy task!

    SD Zoo just has a lot more for the same price. Had it not been for our AP's I likely wouldn't have bothered with the Wild Animal Park.
    Thank you Let me know if you would like to see more... There is more to the TR as well.

    I know what you mean... The layout is confusing to put it lightly. I just happened to stumble upon a few paths that led to some incredible places, but those areas are relatively deserted compared to most of the park. I will give them some credit, though, as they are trying to put up more and more posts and signs to indicate where one is and where they are headed. They have also constructed a new structure that overlooks the African area that houses an elevator... This helped prevent what would have been a huge climb. It is very apparent what areas they have not revisited for quite some time (i.e. The area that used to house the dinosaur exhibit) and what areas are newly renovated. Hopefully the new improvements will spread across the entire park with time.

    Overall, I feel like they have more land than they know what to do with. But I think that they are making strides to improve the confusing layout and convenience the guests. I was surprised as to how much they have accomplished in the past year. If I were you, I would give it another chance.

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  10. #10

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    Re: San Diego Zoo Safari Park 3/13 [Photo Heavy]

    we might go at some point... we just had our van in the shop due to an overheat so I'm a bit leery of doing any longer road trips right now. I know our AP's are expiring sometime soon. Tink and I are already talking about renewing (hopefully the van holds up!)
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  11. #11

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    Re: San Diego Zoo Safari Park 3/13 [Photo Heavy]

    Beautiful butterfly pics!

  12. #12

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    Re: San Diego Zoo Safari Park 3/13 [Photo Heavy]

    Awesome Pics!

    The park seems to be improving over the last year..so seeing this tomorrow is intresting.
    How much are the timed tickets to the Butterfly exhibit?

  13. #13

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    Re: San Diego Zoo Safari Park 3/13 [Photo Heavy]

    Quote Originally Posted by techskip View Post
    we might go at some point... we just had our van in the shop due to an overheat so I'm a bit leery of doing any longer road trips right now. I know our AP's are expiring sometime soon. Tink and I are already talking about renewing (hopefully the van holds up!)
    I'm not sure if you get ZooNooz magazine, but if you do there is a great new article on the "new chapter" of the San Diego Zoo Safari Park. I can scan the article if you want.

    Quote Originally Posted by Bryce05 View Post
    Beautiful butterfly pics!
    Thank you!

    Quote Originally Posted by DisneyFan28 View Post
    Awesome Pics!

    The park seems to be improving over the last year..so seeing this tomorrow is intresting.
    How much are the timed tickets to the Butterfly exhibit?
    Thanks!

    They are free. There is no standby line, just the timed tickets.

    Sorry for the delay in continuation of my TR... I hope to continue it soon!

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  14. #14

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    Re: San Diego Zoo Safari Park 3/13 [Photo Heavy]

    Quote Originally Posted by KEBSD View Post
    I'm not sure if you get ZooNooz magazine, but if you do there is a great new article on the "new chapter" of the San Diego Zoo Safari Park. I can scan the article if you want.
    We went today, renewed the AP's, and bought 1 for our little one who turned 3 late last year. It was an easy decision because even if we go once a month it's paid in a couple trips. Last year we lost track of how many "day trips" we did to SD Zoo...

    Not to be crass, but for us the Safari Park is a free bonus. We'd be content just having the SD Zoo if a cheaper alternative were offered.

    I LOVE the Butterfly Jungle when it is a timed ticket only. This really kept the crowds down. Our "time" was set for about 1hr after we arrived, and we used that time to feed the Lori's and see a few other animals. Last year felt "rushed" and there didn't seem to be many butterflies, just people who were "encouraged" to "keep moving". This year it wasn't overly crowded, we took our time, and there were TONS of butterflies everywhere. Beautiful butterflies, all shapes, colors, sizes. They were landing on people, hats, shirts, you name it... amazing experience.

    For anyone going I would recommend wearing bright orange, bright yellow, or red as those seemed to be the colors the butterflies "swarmed".
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    Re: San Diego Zoo Safari Park 3/13 [Photo Heavy]

    Quote Originally Posted by techskip View Post
    We went today, renewed the AP's, and bought 1 for our little one who turned 3 late last year. It was an easy decision because even if we go once a month it's paid in a couple trips. Last year we lost track of how many "day trips" we did to SD Zoo...

    Not to be crass, but for us the Safari Park is a free bonus. We'd be content just having the SD Zoo if a cheaper alternative were offered.

    I LOVE the Butterfly Jungle when it is a timed ticket only. This really kept the crowds down. Our "time" was set for about 1hr after we arrived, and we used that time to feed the Lori's and see a few other animals. Last year felt "rushed" and there didn't seem to be many butterflies, just people who were "encouraged" to "keep moving". This year it wasn't overly crowded, we took our time, and there were TONS of butterflies everywhere. Beautiful butterflies, all shapes, colors, sizes. They were landing on people, hats, shirts, you name it... amazing experience.

    For anyone going I would recommend wearing bright orange, bright yellow, or red as those seemed to be the colors the butterflies "swarmed".
    To my knowledge, a membership is the exact same cost as a one-day admission, so even if you go once a year to one park it is worth it, considering that the tram tour is $40 without a membership.

    Yes... I feel like they should have two tiers of costs... One for a membership to one park and one for a membership to both. But no matter how you cut it, the cost is very reasonable.

    One of my favorite things about the Butterfly Jungle is that there is zero pressure to make you leave. You can spend your entire day inside it if you wish.

    I agree with those color choices... Basically any vivid colors, or even a floral design, will attract the butterflies' attention. Certain types of cologne/perfume attract them as well.

    Let me know if you want me to scan the article

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