ASHEBORO, NC – 47,190 guests visited the North Carolina Zoo in Asheboro in February, making it the largest attended February in the 43-year history of the park.  Warm temperatures, clear skies and a concentrated marketing effort between the Zoo and the Division of Natural and Cultural Resources drove moms, dads, children, seniors and millennials to the world’s largest Zoo during the shortest month of the year.

Diane Villa, Zoo Interim Marketing Officer said, “We are excited to have such a dynamic start to 2017! Everyone has enjoyed seeing polar bears Nikita and Anana playing together, which guests would typically see during the winter. But the African animals, such as elephants and rhinos, have all been out in their habitats and enjoying the mild winter weather as well.”

With February in the rearview, the Zoo is busily preparing to impress guests with both new and updated attractions coming this April.  In addition to the Acacia Station Giraffe Deck, Endangered Species Carousel, and Air Hike (an elevated ropes and balance course), the Zoo will offer an additional ride on Zoofari at 10 a.m. Thursday through Sunday, and “Dino Island 4D” will be the featured film at Junction Plaza for 2017.

Brand new at the Zoo beginning in April are:

Dragonfly Paddle Boats Located at Marsh Boardwalk, North America

 For the first time ever at the North Carolina Zoo, guests will have an opportunity to enjoy a unique paddleboat adventure on the North America Lake. Guests can take a 30-minute excursion on one of 24 boats, complete with canopies. Buoys will conveniently guide guests as they experience all the lake has to offer. 
• April-October, open daily 9:30 a.m.- 4 p.m. 
• Additional ticket purchase of $5 or included in the Fun Pass.

  • Restrictions apply. First-come, first-served.


Dino Bus Located at North America Entrance, Africa Parking Lot and near Junction Plaza
Who doesn’t love the fun, thrills, and excitement of a dinosaur hunt? Dino Bus is a new way to see animatronic dinosaurs on a direct ride to and from the center of the Park. Two different rides allow guests to relax in open-air buses and get exclusive narrated tours while seeing dynamic, colorful dinosaurs and hearing about the exciting efforts the Zoo is engaged in to protect today’s animals from going the way of the dinosaurs.
April-October, open daily 9 a.m. - 5 p.m.
• Additional ticket purchase of $4 or included in the Fun Pass.


The North Carolina Zoo invites you to experience a new season and new adventures while exploring the five and a half miles of walking trails and 1,600 animals this spring.


About the North Carolina Zoo

The North Carolina Zoo provides an experience like no other zoo anywhere. With five miles of exhibits, nearly 1,600 animals and 52,000 plants it is the largest natural habitat zoo in the world and an international leader in wildlife conservation.

Find yourself surrounded by some of Africa’s giants including elephants, rhinos, and giraffes; share the love of gorillas with Mosuba and his six-member troop; polar bears Nikita and Anana take polar plunges every day at Rocky Coast; or join in the play at the mud café in the Kidzone.

Located in the center of the state in Asheboro, it is convenient to visit from anywhere in North Carolina. The North Carolina Zoo welcomes nearly 800,000 guests each year. Plan your adventure at


About the North Carolina Department of Natural and Cultural Resources 

The North Carolina Zoo is an agency of the N.C. Department of Natural and Cultural Resources. The N.C. Department of Natural and Cultural Resources (NCDNCR) is the state agency with a vision to be the leader in using the state’s natural and cultural resources to build the social, cultural, educational and economic future of North Carolina. NCDNCR's mission is to improve the quality of life in our state by creating opportunities to experience excellence in the arts, history, libraries and nature in North Carolina by stimulating learning, inspiring creativity, preserving the state’s history, conserving the state’s natural heritage, encouraging recreation and cultural tourism, and promoting economic development.

NCDNCR includes 27 historic sites, seven history museums, two art museums, two science museums, three aquariums and Jennette’s Pier, 39 state parks and recreation areas, the N.C.  Zoo, the nation's first state-supported Symphony Orchestra, the State Library, the State Archives, the N.C. Arts Council, State Preservation Office and the Office of State Archaeology, along with the Division of Land and Water Stewardship. For more information, please call (919) 807-7300 or visit