Belize Zoo and Tropical Education Center

Photo Credit: © Brian Fagan CC BY

Founded in 1983 by Sharon Matola, the Belize Zoo came into being after a film crew that was working on a film about wildlife in Belize had so thoroughly tamed a collection of wild animals that they could not be placed back in the wild, and euthanizing them was too extreme. The habitat was created as these animals new home, and over the years the zoo has continued to take on native animals that once served as pets in the area. Today there are between 125 and 150 animals living on 29 acres of preserved land. This award winning facility serves as Belize's first zoo.

Every animal, of which there are about 125, at the zoo is native to Belize. A tour will take you through to visit a collection of mammals like the jaguar and ocelot, birds, and reptiles like crocodiles. The zoo offers animal encounters, too, where you can get up close an personal with jaguars, boa constrictors, and a scarlet macaw.

The Comprehensive Tour entails a full introduction background on all of the animals, including their National Animals such as the Tapir and Toucan. This lasts for an hour and a half. The High Light Tour includes a brief introduction on a few of the animals at the Zoo. This takes about 30-45 minutes. The also offer animal encounters with black jaguars, toucans, and tapirs.


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Belize Zoo is located about 29 miles west of Belize City, right along the Western Highway.

Located in Central Belize, Belize Zoo and Tropical Education Center invites residents and vacationers rooming in this area of Belize. But even if you aren't staying in the vicinity, you are free to drop by to check it out. It's 16.0 miles east-northeast of Belmopan.

Nearby Restaurants

Lunch and dinner options are hard to find in the area near Belize Zoo and Tropical Education Center. Cheer's, which has a menu full of Belizean meals, is very close-by, making it a great option for zoo visitors. The eatery is a slight ways away, but out of the way enough that you might want to make arrangements for having a type of transportation to get there.

Nearby Attractions

You'll find some other activities nearby, including Monkey Bay National Park, which is two miles away Central Belize. Furthermore, you can think about checking out Gran's Farm, which is another nearby attraction.

With a selection of nearby activities, you'll never get bored. The closest attractions are listed in the following table.

Attractions Near Belize Zoo and Tropical Education Center
Attraction Type Distance Direction Location
Monkey Bay National Park -- 2.0 mi. (25.4 km) S 15.8 mi. East-Northeast of Belmopan
Gran's Farm -- 10.9 mi. (24.9 km) ENE 15.5 mi. West-Southwest of Belize City
Heris Nature Park Other Attraction 12.8 mi. (5.2 km) WSW 3.2 mi. Northeast of Belmopan
Community Baboon Sanctuary Other Attraction 12.9 mi. (37.6 km) N 23.4 mi. Northeast of Belmopan

More Information


Belize Zoo is open daily from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.


The zoo's policy is that no animal is taken from the wild. All animals are rescues or have been born at the zoo.


The Belize Zoo is independent of the government and does not receive funding from the state. It relied on dues from members, admissions fees, tours, and donations to get by. The Comprehensive Tour is $25(USD) for two people, as is the High Light Tour. The Junior Buddy Spotter Jaguar Encounter is $50 for one to five people, while you can interact with Black Jaguars, Toucans, and Tapirs for $5(USD) for one to four people.


Mile 29 Western Highway, Central Belize, Belize


(501) 822-8000




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