|Monkey Jungle in Miami, FL|
The slogan of this primate paradise is, "Where Humans Are Caged and Monkeys Run Wild." One of only a handful of protected habitats for primates in the U.S.A. and the only one that is open for the public to explore from within, most of the 10 species at Monkey Jungle roam about the 30 acre preserve free. Unfortunately some have to be caged because they would hurt the other monkeys if they were not.
The bulk of the experience involves walking through the jungle in a long cage. Monkeys are everywhere, climbing all over the outside of the cage, above you and on the sides. You can purchase boxes of raisins to feed the monkeys (get a few boxes - they are only 75 cents each). The second you put raisins in a bowl, a monkey is sure to pull the bowl up by a chain, devour the raisins and lower the bowl, hoping for more. So cute!
Quite a few shows are available that teach you about the monkeys. In one show, monkeys dive for food in a pool - pretty amazing! Keep in mind that, because the monkeys are free to roam the jungle, coming and going as they please, sometimes shows will have a lot of monkeys; sometimes they won't. Like any park with animals, they are most active in the morning and late in the day.
Compared to the major attractions in the Florida area, admission tickets are really quite reasonable - Adults: $29.95, Children (age 3-9): $23.95. Of course, people typically only spend a few hours at Monkey Jungle so the cost per hour is about the same as the major attractions. The experience is definitely unique, though!
For a truly amazing experience, you can purchase a rainforest tour ticket for an additional $60. No, the ticket isn't cheap, but it is definitely a once in a lifetime experience. Small groups get to enter the rainforest and enjoy a hands-on experience with squirrel monkeys. These little darlings will eat from your hands and crawl all over you. Amazing experience!
Kids love this place and adults do, too. Monkey Jungle is simply something you'll never forget!