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Panaewa Rainforest Zoo and Gardens

Features Animals
Hwy 11 to Stainback Hwy, Hilo, Island of Hawaii, HI 96720
+1 808-959-7224
Review Highlights
Worth the visit

Panaewa Zoo was unbelievable in that it is an excellent zoo while somehow being operated by... read more

Reviewed 1 week ago
Ian L
Frederick, Maryland
Nice small zoo

You can't beat the price. It's free and works great for a change of pace. We took a day off from... read more

Reviewed 2 weeks ago
Zachary H
Poway, California
Read all 391 reviews
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  • Excellent42%
  • Very good38%
  • Average14%
  • Poor5%
  • Terrible1%
Travellers talk about
“white tiger” (81 reviews)
“tropical birds” (12 reviews)
Open Now
All hours
Hours Today: 9:00 am - 4:00 pm
Hwy 11 to Stainback Hwy, Hilo, Island of Hawaii, HI 96720
+1 808-959-7224
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Reviews (391)
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1 - 10 of 376 reviews

Reviewed 1 week ago

Panaewa Zoo was unbelievable in that it is an excellent zoo while somehow being operated by donations. The variety of animals is amazing and, while some of the habitats are on the small side, you do get the sense that these animals are well cared...More

Thank Ian L
Reviewed 2 weeks ago

You can't beat the price. It's free and works great for a change of pace. We took a day off from driving and sightseeing to relax around in Hilo. They have a pretty good collection of animals for a free zoo. A bonus was seeing...More

Thank Zachary H
Reviewed 2 weeks ago

Comfortable walking shoes for the walkway is strolling up and down to the different venues of birds, fowl, tigers, alligator, emu, goats, anteaters, monkeys, turtles and lush tropical plants and benches that incorporated the animals and flowers into the benches.

Thank 50thCelebrators
Reviewed 17 September 2017 via mobile

The gardens almost exceed the attraction of the animals with new gardens by volunteers from the Vireya tropical rhododendron society and Aquatic garden society and bamboo association. At 12 acres it is the only tropical rainforest zoo in the United States. The profusion of flowers...More

Thank Ken L
Reviewed 12 September 2017

Fun zoo, playgrounds and botanical garden. Strolling is a must. Good for families old and young. Free, donations only.

Thank Judy M
Reviewed 22 August 2017 via mobile

Free parking and good place to spend a few hours with kids. Near downtown Hilo and other attractions like Rainbow falls and Mona Loa macadamia nut factory which we didn't have time to go. Good selection of animals!

1  Thank Mike W
Reviewed 15 August 2017 via mobile

we started our vacation with this place. awesome for all age. the tropical plants and cooing of the tropical birds made an amazing environment. there was this Nene which was begging us food and the peacocks were roaming freely. you can't ask for more

Thank Raihan K
Reviewed 15 August 2017

the zoo is free and seems to be a location for locals to take their kids which seems to be catering to the young families. lots of birds and different animals throughout the small park. several enclosures were not kept up and signage could have...More

Thank Hibby922
Reviewed 5 August 2017

We read about the Panaewa Rainforest Zoo (Also called Hilio Zoo) on a blog for family activities on the Big Island, and decided to stop on our way to Volcanoes National park to break up the drive a bit. We're so glad we did!!! Not...More

Thank ChewInRI
Reviewed 3 August 2017

A neat place to visit, excellent value (donations gladly accepted, I'm sure they put it to good use). Well kept grounds and gardens. Animals are well cared for, and being a small zoo are remarkably easy to see. There's a nice playground if you have...More

Thank sfendt
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Questions & Answers
Stella T
12 February 2017|
AnswerShow all 5 answers
Response from oliviasmom2016 | Reviewed this property |
I would bet not because there are peacocks walking around on the property. Better call to check.
3 November 2016|
Response from Renee123 | Reviewed this property |
It's not very big. You can probably see everything in an hour.
31 October 2016|
AnswerShow all 4 answers
Response from mchino54 | Reviewed this property |
Aloha - its about a 15 minute drive from the cruise port. You will need a taxi or a rental car. Its near the Macadamia nut factory (farm) as well so you may want to see both while you are out there.