USA TODAY’s 10Best Readers’ Choice travel awards reveals Oklahoma animal habitat as 7th best in America

The ZOO thanks YOU! The results are in, and the Oklahoma City Zoo is excited to announce that Sanctuary Asia is a winner in the 2019 USA TODAY’S 10Best Readers' Choice travel awards for Best Zoo Exhibit. After four weeks of public voting, the OKC Zoo’s newest habitat, Sanctuary Asia, earned the ranking of 7th in the nation. A panel of relevant experts partnered with 10Best editors to pick the initial 20 nominees, and the top 10 winners were determined by popular vote.

“We are extremely grateful to our community supporters who voted for Sanctuary Asia and helped us earn this honor for the Zoo and Oklahoma. We invite the world to experience Sanctuary Asia and see what makes it one of the best exhibits in the nation,” said Dwight Lawson, executive director of the Oklahoma City Zoo.

Encompassing 14.5 acres, Sanctuary Asia is a stunning, multi-purpose environment where Zoo guests can engage with wildlife from the Asian continent like never before. Guests will encounter Indian rhinos, red pandas, Komodo dragons, raccoon dogs and more. Sanctuary Asia is also home to the Zoo’s multigenerational herd of Asian elephants. Central to Sanctuary Asia is Lotus Pavilion, a two-level restaurant and event venue, providing the Zoo’s highest vantage point with stunning views into multiple animal habitats through floor-to-ceiling windows as well as a wraparound balcony. At the entrance of Lotus Pavilion is an open courtyard that features a series of water fountains emerging from the ground, providing a much-needed respite for guests and a fun splash area for little ones to experience.

Visit Sanctuary Asia and experience an adventure bigger than life! The Oklahoma City Zoo and Botanical Garden is a proud member of the Association of Zoos and Aquariums, the American Alliance of Museums, Oklahoma City’s Adventure District and an Adventure Road partner. Located at the crossroads of I-44 and I-35, the Zoo is open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily. Regular admission is $11 for adults and $8 for children ages 3-11 and seniors ages 65 and over. Children two and under are admitted free. Connect with the Zoo on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram and by visiting Our Stories. Zoo fans can support the OKC Zoo by becoming Oklahoma Zoological Society members at or in-person at the Zoo!