Green Meadows Petting Farm

6 Zoos & Petting Farms Around Milwaukee (2024)

If you’re an animal lover living in the Milwaukee area, then you’re in for a treat!

Petting zoos are a wonderful way to get up close and personal with a variety of adorable creatures, and lucky for us, there are plenty of great options to choose from in the area.

Whether you’re looking for a fun family activity or just a chance to hang out with some furry friends, we’ve got you covered.

In this post, we’ll take a look at the best zoos & petting zoos in and around Milwaukee and what makes them so special.

So grab your camera, some sunscreen, and let’s go explore!

1. Green Meadows Petting Farm

33603 High Dr. (Hwy 20), East Troy, WI 53120
(262) 534-2891

Green Meadows offers a hands-on, interactive learning experience that can last the whole day. Kids can pet, feed, and in some cases even hold the farm animals, including baby chicks, bunnies, and goats. They can also milk a cow if they’re up for it! Don’t miss the kitten barn, filled with sweet, soft kittens for petting and cuddling. There are also pony, wagon, and hay rides.

Don’t miss the playground that includes a fire truck the kids can climb, wooden wagons, and a John Deere tractor with a slide.

The farm typically opens for the season in early May.

2. Bear Den Zoo & Petting Farm

6831 Big Bend Rd., Waterford, WI 53185
(262) 895-6430

girl holding lemur at Bear Den Zoo & Petting Farm Waterford Wisconsin
Photo Credit: Facebook, @beardenzoo

This family-owned zoo houses traditional farm animals like baby chicks, goats, and cows. They are also the perfect blend of local wildlife and more exotic animals like lemurs, kangaroos, and llamas. Kids can pet and interact with almost all of the animals.

3. Concord General Store and Zoo (FREE!)

N6485 County Rd. F, Oconomowoc, WI 53066
(262) 593-5400

Concord General Store is a gas station, but it’s so much more than that. You’ll find organic snacks, local coffee, and a petting zoo. There is no admission fee, and you can pet and feed the ponies, goats, and pigs. It’s the perfect pit stop on the way to Madison, or as it’s own destination for a fun-filled morning or afternoon.

4. Milwaukee County Zoo

10001 W. Blue Mound Rd., Milwaukee, WI 53226

The Milwaukee County Zoo is home to over 200 wooded acres and more than 2,000 animals. You’ll come face-to-face with giant elephants, looming giraffes, roaring lions, bears resting in hammocks, swinging monkeys, and more.

You’ll definitely want to stop by the Family Farm area, where you’ll find an animal feeding area, a cow milking barn, and a huge playground. Plus, Kohl’s Wild Theater offers live conservation-themed shows and Birds of Prey demonstrations for young kids, and they happen all throughout the summer for free.

For an extra fee, you can hop on the Safari Train that runs through the grounds, feed the giraffes, ride the carousel, get a guided tour on the Zoomobile, see an Oceans of Fun Seal and Sea Lion Show, or get a bird’s eye view of the zoo on the Sky Safari.

Family free days are offered six times a year, so check their website for dates and times.

5. Shalom Wildlife Zoo

1901 Shalom Dr., West Bend, WI 53090

Shalom Wildlife Zoo features three miles of looping trail through which you can walk or drive a golf cart. You’ll observe deer, elk, bison, wolves, and more in an expansive natural environment. (In the Springtime, be on the lookout for new baby animals!)

There are educational exhibits and markers along the way. Be sure to pick up a bag of feed at the main building so you can offer some snack to the animals. The whole experience takes about two hours, so be sure to pack snacks and drinks to enjoy at the picnic areas.

You can also explore the children’s play area, and a Native American artifact museum. Check their website for seasonal events and specials such as scavenger hunts, pumpkin hunting, and Christmas at the Zoo.

Read more about Shalom Wildlife Zoo >>

6. Racine Zoo

2131 N. Main St., Racine, WI 53402
(262) 636-9189

This small, charming zoo is home to a hundred different species of animals, and it’s perfect for young children who are having a first-time zoo experience. It’s located right along the shores of Lake Michigan, so you can make it a full day trip with a stop at nearby North Beach.

Bring the whole family on a Zoorific Saturday to enjoy themed crafts, exciting games, and other activities all day long (FREE with regular zoo admission). Stop by stations with Conservation Education Specialists for educational programming.

Milwaukee Campus – 4500 W. Wisconsin Ave., Milwaukee, WI 53208, (414) 264-6257
Ozaukee Campus – 630 W. Dekora St., Saukville, WI 53080, (262) 377-7580

The Wisconsin Humane Society hosts events for kids to learn about their organization and meet the animals. Read about the Wisconsin Humane Society’s youth programs here.

Day Trip Idea: Shalom Wildlife Zoo

Milwaukee County Zoo: A Family’s Guide

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