The Henry Doorly Zoo and Aquarium in Omaha has been named the world’s best zoo in a new ranking by crowdsourced online travel review site TripAdvisor.
Of the 275 world class zoos and aquariums, the Omaha park -- which has a history that dates back to 1894 -- took top billing for its range of exhibits and animals, including rainforest, butterfly, gorilla and Madagascan pavilions.
The results were compiled using an algorithm that took into account the quality and quantity of reviews for zoos and aquariums over a 12-month period.
Leading the international list is the US, taking nine of the top 25 attractions around the world.
Rounding out the top three spots are the San Diego Zoo and Loro Parque in Puerto de la Cruz, Spain.
Recently, the Henry Doorly Zoo announced plans for its biggest project to date: a $70 million African Grasslands that will stretch 28 acres and feature, among other things, the largest elephant barn and herd room in North America at more than half an acre as well as giraffes, white rhinos, cheetahs, impalas, zebras, safari tent camps and an African lodge for overnight stays.
In the category of aquariums, the Monterey Bay Aquarium in California was crowned the best in the world for features like an “open-sea exhibit” that is home to sea turtles, tuna, sharks, octopus, jellies and puffins.
“Amazing exhibits, fish large and small, fantastic corals, unbelievably beautiful jellyfish, sardines going around overhead. A thrill,” wrote one TripAdvisor visitor.
Like zoos, the US dominates the list of top 25 aquariums, snatching 11 spots. Other addresses include Japan, South Africa, Canada and France.
Here are the top 5 zoos according to TripAdvisor:
1. Henry Doorly Zoo, Omaha, Nebraska
2. San Diego Zoo, San Diego, California
3. Loro Parque, Puerto de la Cruz, Spain
4. St. Louis Zoo, Saint Louis, Missouri
5. Singapore Zoo, Singapore
Here are the top 5 aquariums:
1. Monterey Bay Aquarium, Monterey, California
2. Oceanario de Lisboa, Lisbon, Portugal
3. Georgia Aquarium, Atlanta, Georgia
4. Tennessee Aquarium, Chattanooga, Tennessee
5. Ripley’s Aquarium of the Smokies, Gatlinburg, Tennessee