I feel like going on a rant at this point but will keep this review tempered and concise. First off let me say that Point Defiance Park is quite picturesque and well kept giving us hope for a fantastic zoo visit. Weather was not an issue it was a perfect day for being outside and especially for photography, which is always my interest. Entrance fees to the park are in line with what you would expect to pay $13.00/adult.
The one thing that struck me from the moment I entered the park was that young children seemed to abound in every direction. Strollers were ever present and there wasn’t any sight of animals. We made our way down the paved paths that our map told us to follow until we came to different areas that supposedly housed animals, but they were few and far between. Every animal we did see was caged in what looked like an animal prison. There was glass or bars in front and a net covering almost every habitat.Photography was out of the question; I did not take more than a handful of photos throughout the entire park. We came away pretty disappointed and felt as though the park planners could have done a better job of give the public a better Zoo experience.
There is a very nice caveat to be told however and now here is the rest of the story. On the back of the zoo entrance ticket there is print that reads 2 for 1 entrance to the Northwest Trek Wildlife Park.
The park is in Eatonville approximately 30 min drive southeast from our location.
We made the drive and arrived at 2:00 pm. The park closes at 5:00 pm. We were pleasantly surprised at the vastness of the park as well as the well-kept forested grounds. This park is unlike the Wildlife Safari In Winston in that you park you’re car and walk the grounds visiting the animals in natural habitats. Photography is fantastic in this park as the animal areas are unencumbered with fencing netting or wire, provided you are standing in the viewing area. Needless to say I was able to start ripping that shutter and came away with some nice photos.
The second ½ of this park is equally as nice as patrons are given colored tokens when they arrive so they may enter the wildlife tram at a prescribed time. The tram has three open-air cars that resemble ones you might ride on the back lot of Universal studios. The tour lasted nearly one hour and is quite relaxing except for the constant narration of the driver. Many photo ops here as well.
The second day of our mini Vacation will be divulged in the next Blog entry.