San Diego Zoo and Safari Park Report All-time Record Attendance

In 2018, More Than 5 Million Guests Supported San Diego Zoo Global’s Efforts to End Extinction Worldwide

It’s a time to celebrate for San Diego Zoo Global as the organization’s two world-renowned facilities, the San Diego Zoo and the San Diego Zoo Safari Park, experienced combined record attendance in 2018—with more than 4 million people entering the turnstiles to the Zoo and over 1.5 million visiting the Safari Park. In addition, the Zoo itself reached a major milestone as this is the first year that attendance had surpassed 4 million in its 100-year history.

New features, such as the six habitats of Conrad Prebys Africa Rocks, the Zoo’s newest and most ambitious construction project; and Walkabout Australia, the Safari Park’s immersive 3.6-acre habitat that provided guests with a unique view of the Land Down Under, are thought to be important contributors to the record attendance.

“We are delighted to have been able to host more than 4 million people at the Zoo, and I know that a lot of this is due to the wonderful new guest areas and the commitment to guest service shown by our employees every day,” said Dwight Scott, director of the San Diego Zoo. “It has been a pleasure to share our love of wildlife with so many people this year—and we know that this high attendance will help to fund additional conservation work in the future.”

The front entrance to the San Diego Zoo

San Diego Zoo Global was founded in 1916, and today this nonprofit conservation organization operates both the San Diego Zoo and the San Diego Zoo Safari Park. With a mission devoted to saving species, San Diego Zoo Global is involved in ongoing conservation work with species all over the world. It has successfully reintroduced more than 30 species into wild habitats as part of long-term recovery programs.

“This attendance record shows us that people care about wildlife, and care about saving species,” said Douglas G. Myers, president/CEO, San Diego Zoo Global. “This last year, we increased communications about the need to save species and ran advertising asking people to support our efforts by coming to the Zoo and the Safari Park. More than 5 and a half million people responded by visiting us in 2018—imagine what we can do to save species next year!”

As an international nonprofit organization, San Diego Zoo Global works to fight extinction through conservation efforts for plants and animals worldwide. With a history of leadership in species recovery and animal care, San Diego Zoo Global works with partners in science-based field programs on six continents, and maintains sanctuaries and public education facilities in many places. Inspiring passion for nature is critical to saving species, and San Diego Zoo Global’s outreach efforts share the wonder of wildlife with millions of people every year. Current major conservation initiatives include fighting wildlife trafficking and the impacts of climate change on wildlife species; broad-spectrum species and habitat protection efforts in Kenya, in Peru and on islands worldwide; preventing extinction in our own backyard; and expanding efforts to bank critical genetic resources and apply them to the conservation of critically endangered species. To learn more, visit