Aquariums and zoos are a wonderful place for kids to learn, and many provide educational opportunities for young visitors. Although learning is the aim, kids will also take away the memory of coming nose to nose with a toothy shark, a giant giraffe, or some fanciful creature that will delight and awe. It's always good to bring a camera; you never know when a priceless moment of discovery may occur.
For most people, the highlight of this zoo is seeing the giant pandas, but it's also known for its vast array of species, including such rarities as the Buerger's tree kangaroos of New Guinea, long billed kiwis from New Zealand, Przewalski's horses from Mongolia, lowland gorillas from Africa, and giant tortoises from the Galapagos, all in naturalistic settings. In fact, the San Diego Zoo is the first zoo in the U.S. to separate animals from humans with moats instead of bars, and has long been active in conservation efforts around the world as well as breeding programs for endangered species, including those beguiling black and white bears. The habitats allow the animals to feel comfortable as well as affording some great close-up views for visitors.