A Peek Inside Riverbanks Zoo {VIDEO}

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Directional signs at the Riverbanks Zoo.

Welcome to our very first Friday Family Fun day! The girls and I are going to try and create little videos of our weekly adventures this summer and we’ve started up a shiny new YouTube channel to host them all! If you’d like to keep up with our excursions and see what there is to do in the Charlotte, NC area, be sure to subscribe here!

This week we headed down to the Riverbanks Zoo in Columbia, SC. We’ve been going here several times a year since our move, you can read why I love it so much right here.

Riverbanks has undergone some construction and expansion over the last year and we were thrilled to discover that the Bear and Otter habitats are now open for viewing. The river otters were by far our favorite moment from the day and I’m still kicking myself for missing video of one of the otters putting it’s paw up to the window to say hi to the Peanut. I think that interaction is going to stick with her for some time.

Wild times with the animals at Riverbanks Zoo

I can never get enough of feeding the giraffes there, though. I wish you could have seen me trying to feed it with my left hand while recording it with my right all while that huge purple tongue was eagerly seeking out the lettuce! The outtakes are hysterical and may be worth a blooper reel at some point.

If you want to plan a family visit to Riverbanks Zoo, start with a peek at their site here.

If you’re going in the summer, here are 4 tips for making your adventure run smoothly:

1. Be sure to arrive as early as possible. While the zoo does a fantastic job with fans and misting machines, it can get really hot by noon and the animals get sleepy.

2. Bring water! Staying hydrated is crucial with the little ones. I packed one big canteen for my bag and we shared. It kept us going until lunchtime.

3. Sunblock is important but don’t panic. The zoo is extremely shady and many exhibits are indoors.

4. Bring cash for the giraffes. Feeding them is an extra expense and they only take cash. I believe it was $2/serving and worth EVERY PENNY.

Bonus Tip: Be on the lookout for the signage as you drive out of the zoo. My girls crack up every single time.

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