— Looking for a family-friendly day trip? The North Carolina Zoo in Asheboro is about 90 minutes away from Raleigh.

This world-class institution is also a leader in global animal conservation. It is also a member of the Association of Zoos and Aquariums, a nonprofit which helps promote animal welfare, conservation and education.

The North Carolina Zoo often welcomes endangered species or displaced animals who might not otherwise have a place to go. The zoo also participates in several breeding programs. An ocelot baby was born just a few months ago, in response to the species' numbers decreasing in the wild.