Zoos in SHAFER with kids

It’s animal time in Shafer, Minnesota and they are calling YOU!

For those families who LOVE those animal encounters, look no further than Shafer because this The North Star State city has plenty of them!

We have to start with zoos. These are the most iconic way to experience wildlife, and great to visit with children. They offer animal encounters, and kids can experience creatures from all across the globe.  

Farms are a great alternative for a more hands-on experience with petting zoos and barnyard fun. Wildlife sanctuaries offer kids an invaluable lesson in conservation, and animal-specific attractions let kids really immerse themselves in their favorite creatures!

Whatever wildlife experience you choose with children, you know they will walk away filled with memories and knowledge that can’t be replaced. They’ll have a ROAR-ing time! 

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  • Como Park Zoo and Conservatory

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    (34 miles) Saint Paul

    The attractions located here include the zoo, the conservatory, an amusement park, a carousel, Lake Como, a golf course, a pool and more. The park receives more than 2.5 million visitors annually. ...

  • The Thomas Irvine Dodge Nature Center

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    (38 miles) West Saint Paul

    With farm animals, birds of prey and a mass of natural local wildlife, they have been teaching and enthralling kids for over forty years. Plus orchard, bee apiary and special events.

  • Sea Life Minnesota Aquarium

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    (44 miles) Bloomington

    Previously Underwater Adventures Aquarium, this fun Minnesota Sea Life Aquarium has over 10,000 sea creatures that the whole family can experience!

  • Minnesota Zoo

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    (48 miles) Apple Valley

    Our mission is to connect people, animals and the natural world., which means we're dedicated to inspiring people to act on behalf of the environment. To accomplish this, we provide award-winning ...

  • Wilderness Walk Zoo and Recreation

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    (73 miles) Hayward

    This 35 acre animal farm and recreation center has farm animals, a picnic area, wild animals, a maze, playground and walks. One of the many fun family places to go if you're looking for things to do ...

  • Lake Superior Zoo

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    (96 miles) Duluth

    Visit fascinating animals from around the world at the Lake Superior Zoo. Situated in Fairmont Park in West Duluth, the zoo sits on over 16 acres at the base of Spirit Mountain. The rocky hillside, ...

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  • Monkey House

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    (27 miles) White Bear Lake

    5000 square ft indoor play and party center. Bounce houses, obstacle course, slide, rings, swings, foam pit and more! Open play times and private parties.

  • Eagles Nest

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    (31 miles) New Brighton

    From climbing walls, to triple slides, ball pits and a foam forest, kids can play all day at this indoor playground in Minnesota!

  • Lookout Ridge Indoor Playground

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    (34 miles) Woodbury

    In a secure, stimulating environment, custom built to a child's scale, "Lookout Ridge" is a state-of-the-art indoor playground located on the lower level of Central Park. The playground complements ...

  • Maple Maze

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    (39 miles) Maple Grove

    The main climbing structure is a literal maze of tunnels, climbs and activities with 4 new slides and numerous interactive features, plus a separate toddler zone with animal friends and their own ...

  • Good Times Park

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    (43 miles) Eagan

    Vast range of indoor fun from classic playground and bouncy house to sports, construction play, moving playground, reading and art zone and a terrific hologram game.

  • Pump It Up Plymouth

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    (44 miles) Plymouth

    A series of varying high standard inflatables including slides, obstacle courses, climbing maze and bounce houses. Plus regular special sessions including glow in the dark!

  • Jumps and Downs

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    (57 miles) Shakopee

    A day of bouncing fun for kids of all ages!

  • Pipsqueaks Indoor Playground

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    (95 miles) Rochester

    Pipsqueaks, Rochester's INDOOR play zone, is designed for children kindergarten-age and younger to play under parental/guardian supervision. One of the many fun family places to go if you're looking ...

  • Saint Croix

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    (5 miles) Saint Croix Falls

    St. Croix and Namekagon Rivers offer 252 miles of clean water gliding past a lush green landscape, with glimpses of a human presence. Choose to canoe and camp amid the northwoods, or boat and fish ...

  • Teddy Bear Park

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    (23 miles) Stillwater

    Offers a large, imaginative adventure playground with equipment designed for under 7s, and further open playspace around for older kids to play.

  • Discovery Hallow and Garden

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    (24 miles) White Bear Township

    A nature filled play area in the stunning Ramsey County.

  • The Mississippi

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    (35 miles) Saint Paul

    Established in 1988, the Mississippi National River and Recreation Area includes 72 miles of the Mississippi River stretching from the cities of Dayton and Ramsey to just south of Hastings. One of ...

  • Minnehaha Regional Park

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    (40 miles) Minneapolis

    Visit one of the first state parks created in the USA in Minneapolis, with historical sites, gardens, waterfalls, and fun activities!

  • Carpenter St Croix Valley Nature Center

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    (43 miles) Hastings

    At Carpenter St. Croix Valley Nature Center, we believe in fostering appreciation and inspiring stewardship of the natural world through quality environmental education, conservation practices, and ...

  • Red Cedar Trail and Hoffman Hills

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    (53 miles) Menomonie

    Two of Dunn County’s premier natural and recreational destinations. Whether bicycling, skiing, hiking, walking or canoeing, you will discover miles of spectacular natural beauty.

  • Minnesota Landscape Arboretum

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    (56 miles) Chaska

    A nature playground for the whole family with over 1,100 acres of gardens, woods and trails.

  • Northwoods Orchard

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    (88 miles) Oronoco

    offers a seasonal family day out with pumpkin patch, corn maze, backwoods golf, wagon rides and domesticated animals to visit.

  • Paul Bunyan State Trail

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    (97 miles) Minnesota

    The Paul Bunyan Trail, over 100 miles in length, covers a large area. The trail now includes 80 paved miles. With 7 segment maps and over 14 individual city maps and descriptions.

  • Bunker Beach

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    (29 miles) Coon Rapids

    Cool your family off with Bunker Beach's fun waterslides, lazy river, a host of pools, and a play structure!

  • Water Park of America

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    (44 miles) Bloomington

    Located inside the Radisson Hotel Bloomington, near Mall of America and soaring 90 feet above the Twin Cities' skyline, Water Park of America entertains both the young and young at heart. Surf on ...

  • Cascade Bay

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    (44 miles) Eagan

    Check out one of the most popular water parks in Minnesota! From slides, lazy rivers, to shipwrecks, this is one water park ready to make a SPLASH!

  • Chaos Indoor Water Park

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    (76 miles) Eau Claire

    Chaos Water Park, inside the resort, is packed with ways to thrill, explore and find your ultra human strengths. This award-winning comic book park is filled with more than typical slides and rivers; ...

  • Taylors Falls Canoe and Kayak Rental

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    (5 miles) Taylors Falls

    Encounter all sorts of wet wildlife as you meander along the St. Croix River with trips totally tailorable for between 2 and 7 hours. Also on site during summer: Wild Mountain Waterpark, Alpine ...

  • Cedar Lake Speedway

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    (16 miles) New Richmond

    Racing for watching rather than doing, but thrilling for kids if they can take the volume!

  • Wildwood RV Park and Campground

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    (2 miles) Shafer

    Offers a variety of campsites, with enough activities within minutes to provide days of fun! Fun on site includes swimming pool, enjoy mini golf, basketball, volleyball or horseshoes.

  • Cafesjian Carousel

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    (34 miles) St Paul

    Operated by volunteers in St. Paul's Como Park, this 68-horse carousel was built in 1914 and rescued from auction in 1988.

  • WhirlyBall Twin Cities

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    (40 miles) North Maple Grove

    WhirlyBall: a team game with a unique blend of basketball, hockey, lacrosse, and bumper cars! They also have a 4000 square foot arena to play lazer tag, the bruise-less, mess-less combat game played ...

  • Simply Jane Open Artists Studio

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    (42 miles) Minneapolis

    One of a kind budding artists attraction! Easily accessible professional artists studio with affordable fun designs on canvas and accessories. Professional paint, brushes and instruction. Ideal for ...

  • Edinborough Indoor Park

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    (46 miles) Edina

    An indoor park! 1 acre of parkland indoors with features including swimming, sports and a nearly 40 ft high climbing tree themed adventure play frame with unusual features and a large toddler area.