These Zoos, Aquariums and Nature Centers were voted the Bay Area’s 2023 Best of the Best by Bay Area Parent readers. Read the full list of winners here.
Gold: Monterey Bay Aquarium. Located on historic Cannery Row, this nonprofit aquarium offers displays of sea otters, sharks, jellies, penguins and much more. Monterey. montereybayaquarium.org.
Silver: Gilroy Gardens Family Theme Park. Gilroy. gilroygardens.org.
Bronze: Happy Hollow Park & Zoo. San Jose. happyhollow.org.
Gold: CuriOdyssey. Features naturalistic exhibits that are home to more than 100 mostly native animals, ranging from the little red-legged frog to the giant vinegaroon. San Mateo. curiodyssey.org.
Silver: Marine Science Institute. Redwood City. sfbaymsi.org.
Bronze: Lemos Farm. Half Moon Bay. lemosfarm.com.
Gold: San Francisco Zoo. This 100-acre zoo features more than 2,000 exotic, endangered and rescued animals as well as peaceful gardens. San Francisco. sfzoo.org.
Silver: Japanese Tea Garden. San Francisco. japaneseteagardensf.com.
Bronze: Aquarium of the Bay. San Francisco. aquariumofthebay.org.
Bronze: Conservatory of Flowers. San Francisco. conservatoryofflowers.org.
Gold: Oakland Zoo. With animals from African elephants to white-faced whistling ducks, plus a gondola to an area featuring California native animals, a children’s zoo, rides and more, the zoo has been a family favorite for a century. Oakland. oaklandzoo.org.
Silver: University of California Botanical Garden at Berkeley. Berkeley. botanicalgarden.berkeley.edu.
Bronze: Ardenwood Historic Farm. Fremont. ebparks.org/parks/ardenwood.