ROLLING HILLS ZOO
& WILDLIFE MUSEUM

Download a Zoo map

Hours

Winter
9:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.

Spring
9:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.

Summer
8:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.

Fall
9:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.

Closed Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Eve, Christmas Day and New Year's Day.

Stroller Rentals

Single Stroller - $5.00
Double Stroller - $7.00

Wheelchair Rental

$6.00

Tram Rides

All-day passes are $3 per person. Seasonal availability as follows:

Available daily:
Memorial Day - Labor Day

Available Weekends only:
Labor Day - Thanksgiving
and
April 1 - Memorial Day

Available by reservation:
Thanksgiving - April 1

 


FAQs

What is the Rolling Hills Zoo's history?
Where do your zoo animals come from?
How big is the Zoo?
How big is the Museum?
What will we see in the museum?
How do your animals adapt to the climate in Kansas?

What is the RHZ History?
During the early 1980s, the 145 acres that is now home to Rolling Hills Zoo, housed one of the largest Belgian horse breeding operations in the world, maintaining more than 135 brood mares and the stallions to accommodate them.

Local youth toured the barn and learned firsthand what was involved in maintaining, foaling, breaking, and showing the horses. Each year, 8,000 children toured Rolling Hills Ranch at no charge.

In 1986, Salina businessman Charlie Walker, owner of the ranch, purchased a lion, two llamas, and a pair of black bears. These additions were an instant success with the school tours and generated many questions and enthusiasm for the animals. By 1989, all of the Belgian horses had been dispersed, and Mr. Walker dedicated the 145 acres as the future home for exhibiting exotic species.

Within a year, tours had grown to 12,000 children per year and the collection included 24 species. What began as an interesting hobby was rapidly becoming an aggressive full-time vocation. The dream was quickly becoming a reality.

In spring 1994, 95 of the 145 acres were set aside to open to the public. This allowed for the expansion of the number of species housed at the Zoo to grow from 36 to 85. Construction continued for five years until Rolling Hills Zoo opened to the public in October 1999. Prior to opening the Zoo, there was discussion of creating a small wildlife museum to offer a year round attraction for Rolling Hillsí guests.

In the fall of 1999, Rolling Hillsí officials became aware of a museum in Stockton, CA that was seeking a home for its full-mount wildlife collection. The collection of nearly 1,500 full-mount, taxidermy pieces was acquired by Rolling Hills and the dream of a small museum suddenly became much larger. In 2000, a 64,000 sq. ft. building was constructed that would become the future home of Rolling Hills Wildlife Museum. A portion of the building was set aside as a conference center, offering state-of-the-art audio visual equipment and seating for up to 250 guests.

In December 2003, after dreaming and planning for three years, the creation of the Wildlife Museum began. In just under 18 months, the Wildlife Museum opened to the public in March of 2007.


Where do your zoo animals come from?
Most of our animals come from other zoos and conservation parks. The majority of the animals have been born in captivity.

How big is the zoo?
Rolling Hills Zoo consists of 145 acres of Kansas prairie. There currently are 65 acres of exhibits that are open to the public. Future construction of an additional 40 acres could include an Indian rhino exhibit, a mixed African species exhibit, and much more.


How big is the museum?
The museum building is 64,000 sq. feet, a portion of that serving as the Rolling Hills Conference Center. The museum offers guest more than 50 realistic exhibits portraying animals in naturalistic settings with waterfalls, animatronic robots, and life-like landscaping.


What will I see in the museum?
As guests journey around the world within the museum, they will view exhibits portraying Africa, North America, the rainforest, the Far East, the Middle East, and more. Guests will also have the opportunity to enjoy traveling exhibits located within the Earl Bane Gallery and children of all ages will enjoy the interactive Helen L. Graves Hideaway Hollow education room. The last stop in the journey is truly out of this world as guests venture into outer space in the ADM Theater.


How do the animals adapt to the climate in Kansas?
Remember that most of our animals are captive born and raised in zoos in North America. Therefore, many of the species that might be found in a tropical habitat in the wild have had some time to "adjust" to a more temperate climate. Nearly all of our animal buildings are also heated during the winter.

 

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