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Panaewa Rainforest Zoo and Gardens

#19 of 81 things to do in Hilo Features Animals
Hwy 11 to Stainback Hwy, Hilo, Island of Hawaii, HI 96720
+1 808-959-7224
Review Highlights
A local treasure

We love this zoo, both as former Hilo residents and, on this stop, as tourists. Big Island visitors... read more

Reviewed 16 November 2014
San Antonio, Texas
This zoo may be small, but size isn't everything!

If you only want to see big predators, this zoo might not be for you. In fact, Namaste, the zoo's... read more

Reviewed 7 November 2014
Read all 379 reviews
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  • Excellent42%
  • Very good37%
  • Average15%
  • Poor5%
  • Terrible1%
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Closed Now
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Hours Today: 09:00 - 16:00
Hwy 11 to Stainback Hwy, Hilo, Island of Hawaii, HI 96720
+1 808-959-7224
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Reviews (379)
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151 - 160 of 365 reviews

Reviewed 16 November 2014

We love this zoo, both as former Hilo residents and, on this stop, as tourists. Big Island visitors shouldn't expect it to be of the size or diversity of, say, the San Diego Zoo. It's not meant to compete with that, nor does it claim...More

1  Thank MarcInSA
Reviewed 7 November 2014

If you only want to see big predators, this zoo might not be for you. In fact, Namaste, the zoo's resident white Bengal tiger, had to be euthanized in January of this year due largely to old age (he was 15). But even without your...More

Thank TwoSmallPotatoes
Reviewed 6 November 2014

Free but tired gardens and even more tired zoo animals. Not much to see here. Close by to downtown Hilo.

Thank aneckc
Reviewed 1 November 2014

If you're looking for elephants and lions, this isn't the zoo for you. If you're looking for a very zen place, beautiful grounds to stroll, and a chance to get up close to view the animals they DO have, then this is the place for...More

1  Thank Stephanie L
Reviewed 20 October 2014

As far as zoos go, there are only a few animals but then again, there is no admission fee. I was very disappointed that they did not announce that the white tigers were no longer there. Very nice botanical garden with a nice palm collection.

Thank Sierra_Sunshine
Reviewed 17 October 2014

Great zoo with grounds that remind me of a botanical gardens. It has a great playground for children and a petting zoo on Saturdays. Great place to visit for a stroll and a relaxing day. Unfortunately the white Tiger has died but it is still...More

1  Thank LauraA357
Reviewed 13 October 2014

I didn't expect much out of this Zoo, and ended up being very pleasantly surprised. It's free....which kind of worries me -- how can a Zoo care for animals without significant money? -- but they don't have too many animals, and the zoo itself looks...More

1  Thank Janine F
Reviewed 1 October 2014

This is not for a hot and humid day. Otherwise a nice walk and especially the right price (FREE). The premier attraction, white tiger was not present during this visit.

1  Thank Tg M
Reviewed 1 October 2014

This is a botanical treasure, so enjoy the gorgeous plants (some very valuable) as well as the animals. Zoo is small and has few dangerous beasties so you can get up close to the cages to see animals. Birds like Zoey, an Indigo parrot, are...More

1  Thank gardener4313
Reviewed 30 September 2014

Just off the road to volcano, stop at this zoo which features the animals of the islands, and the rainforest. The grounds are lush and the atmosphere is relaxed. lots of beautiful birds and some very entertaining animals, some running loose. Not a huge place,...More

Thank Phyllis C
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Questions & Answers
Stella T
12 February 2017|
Answer Show 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.
2 November 2016|
Response from Renee123 | Reviewed this property |
It's not very big. You can probably see everything in an hour.
30 October 2016|
Answer Show 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.