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Wild Center/Flickr

Key Info

45 Museum Drive

Details

Zoos and Aquariums Type
Half Day to Full Day Time to Spend

scorecard

  • 3.5Value
  • 4.0Facilities
  • 4.5Atmosphere

Nestled within the Adirondacks about 21 miles southwest of Saranac Lake, The Wild Center features 81 acres of forest and plenty of wildlife. In fact, all of the site's exhibits  including movies, hands-on activities and a butterfly garden  focus on the surrounding landscape. But the standout at this family-friendly attraction is the animal encounters, which give kids and adults an up-close look at owls, otters, porcupines, skunks and various reptiles and amphibians.

In addition to the museum's animal encounters, previous travelers highly recommend the property's tree-level nature path, Wild Walk. This outdoor experience features a four-story tree house, swinging bridges and lounging spaces designed to mimic a spider web and a bald eagle's nest. However, this fun exhibit is only open from late May to mid-October, so plan your visit accordingly.

The Wild Center's hours vary depending on the season, but from late May to mid-October, the property is open daily from 10 a.m. to 5 or 6 p.m. Between Columbus Day and Memorial Day weekend, the museum reduces its hours to Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. However, the Wild Center is closed the entire month of April to complete new exhibit installations.

A ticket to The Wild Center  which is valid for two days and ranges from $10 to $20 depending on the season and ticket holder's age  includes access to all of the museum's exhibits, a play area and several walking trails. A gift shop, cafe and free parking are also available on the property grounds.

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#1 Saranac Lake

Located just 9 miles northwest of the bustling tourist town of Lake Placid, Saranac Lake is the perfect escape from the high prices that accompany Lake Placid's Olympics attractions. Filled with shops, hotels and local diners, Saranac Lake is considered one of the most idyllic villages in upstate New York.

Recent travelers characterized the area as a lesser-known gem of the Adirondacks. Whether you visit when the leaves are changing, in February for winter carnival or once the snow has melted, Saranac Lake offers plenty of stunning scenery without hoards of tourists. Canoeing, hiking and kayaking are especially popular here.

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