A Centennial Celebration

Waterfalls cascading over rocks into pools below, the sun peeking through thick foliage, faint sounds of birds chirping and monkeys laughing in the distance… It’s easy to forget for a moment that you’re not actually strolling through the jungle! And that is the beauty of the world-famous San Diego Zoo: it connects people closely with animals in the most natural way possible. The San Diego Zoo, operated by San Diego Zoo Global, has been a pioneer in the zoological sphere since its inception in 1916, from being among the first in the world to build innovative open-air grotto exhibits to making key contributions to medical research, natural science, and wildlife conservation.

This year the zoo celebrates its centennial anniversary – 100 years of trials and triumphs, fun memories, and, of course, lots of fascinating animals! With over 3,500 rare and endangered animals, more than 650 species and subspecies, and over 700,000 exotic plants living on the 100-acre property, the zoo is dedicated to preserving wildlife as one of the world’s leading global conservation organizations. Some have even referred to the zoo as a living outdoor classroom, educating children and adults alike about the natural world. So for the remainder of the year, join us in celebrating the extraordinary people and animals who have made this beloved San Diego icon what it is today.

Inspired by the San Diego Zoo’s centennial celebration, five Balboa Park institutions are collaborating to bring you a variety of animal-themed exhibits.

Museum of Photographic Arts

Beauty and the Beast: The Animal in Photography
Through Sept. 25

The San Diego History Center

The Lore Behind the Roar! 100 Years of the San Diego Zoo
Through Dec. 31

San Diego Museum of Art

Ferocious Bronze: The Animal Sculptures of Arthur Putnam
Through Oct. 11

San Diego Natural History Museum

Whales: Giants of the Deep
Through Sept. 6

The Machine Inside: Biomechanics
Oct. 8 – Jan. 1, 2017


Jan Brueghel the Elder: The Entry Of The Animals Into Noah’s Ark
Sept. 23 – Dec. 13

San Diego Zoo
2920 Zoo Dr., San Diego, CA 92101