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Nature, Parks & Zoo

Bright sunshine and fantastic weather make Surprise the perfect playground for your favorite outdoor activities. From fishing at a Surprise lake to hiking beautiful mountain ranges and biking along quiet roads, there’s always something new to explore outdoors.


Surprise Park: 57-acre Massive Park
This once-sleepy square-mile farming community surprised just about everyone when it successfully courted two baseball teams away from their Florida training homes. The Cactus League Spring Training facility and stadium, along with a regional library, aquatic center, recreation center, and 57-acre passive park are the centerpieces of this new square-mile-plus downtown development, putting Surprise well on it’s way to becoming the playground of the West Valley.

White Tank Mountain Regional Park and Nature Center
20304 W. White Tank Mountain Rd., 623-935-2505.
White Tank Mountain Regional Park takes more than a day trip to see all of its 30,000 acres of scenic splendor, but a good overview starts at the Waddell Trail with its cholla, saguaro and palo verde. The trail leads deep into Ford Canyon where shallow basins of bedrock often hold water — where the “tanks” get their name. An old rock dam, about two miles from the trailhead, offers an ideal place for day-trippers to turn around.

Horseback Riding White Tank Mountains
20300 W. Olive Waddell, 928-679-2884
whitetanksstables.com
(Call for reservations) 
Experience the White Tank Mountains on horseback! Ages 5 and up. Tours range from one hour to four hours. No experience required. Tours are professionally guided. Sunset rides, wagon rides, etc.

Wildlife World Zoo, Aquarium & Safari Park
ZOO OPEN: 9AM – 6PM; AQUARIUM OPEN: 9AM – 9PM, 365 days a year, including holidays. 623-935-WILD (9453)
This is home to more than 600 exotic and endangered species, and more than 6,000 individual animals. Wildlife World Zoo offers free animal shows, feeding stations and the opportunity to get up close and personal with some amazing animals.

Pick your own citrus right from the tree!
u-pickcitrusaz.com
(December through March)
You can pick some of the best tasting citrus around. Come out each weekend Sat. and Sun. from Dec. to March or later (call first). Bring your friends and family from out of town and let them experience that just-off-the-tree flavor that cannot be duplicated with imported store-bought fruit. ALL fruit is pesticide free as well so  it’s even better for you! Surprise has two you-pick farms:

  • Truman Ranch II: Located 1/3 mile south of Greenway Road on 188th Ave (Perryville Rd.)
  • Cotton Lane Citrus: Located just west of Waddell and Cotton Lane.

Roses at Woolf Leyton Farms
8805 N. Reems Rd., 623-935-5887
Rows and rows of roses on four farms display their colors and fragrance to passers by. With  about 800 acres used for the two-year crop, the locale ranks in the top three rosebush growing areas in the nation, Woolf Leyton Roses harvests 5 million to 6 million rosebushes a year, which are sold to garden stores around the country. They grow about 300 types of roses. Rose bushes grown in Arizona account for half of all the roses sold in the nation. No exaggeration! It’s not a farm that gives unannounced tours, but to see and smell the fields in bloom in early spring is worth at least a drive by.