In Partnership with the Southern Weekend

Meet sloths, giraffes, kangaroos and more at Barn Hill Preserve

Barn Hill Preserve features 50 different species and over 100 different animals

 Hang out with a large selection of exotic animals over at Barn Hill Preserve. 

“We have 50 plus different species, well over a hundred different animals,” said Barn Hill Preserve brand manager Marisa Saladino.

As an interactive animal park, Barn Hill Preserve specializes with hands on educational experiences.

“No day is ever the same, I just love being kept on my toes,” said Saladino. 

Located just north of Baton Rouge in Ethel, Louisiana, join in on the park’s encounter tours.

The two-hour guided tour features a walk through of the property where you’ll learn about different animals and even get an up-close interaction with some of small ones.

“We will bring you back into our outdoor sloth enclosure, and you’ll sit down and the sloth will sit on a pillow in their lap,” said Saladino.  Sloths are used to hanging on their mothers backs, so we put them on a pillow to kind of simulate that.”

Depending on each sloth’s mood that day, you just might get the best of both worlds.

“We have one baby sloth who prefers to sleep the entire time, And then the other one likes to sit still for snacks,” said Saladino. 

Other animals on the property include a camel, giraffe, small cats, goats, kangaroos and more.

And if you’re looking for very unique experience, how about a swim with some Asian small clawed otters.

“The otters are my favorite because they have their own different personalities.

“Some of our otters came here as babies, so we got to experience like their first swim. We started off swimming them in a small bathtub, then we let them come out into the pool, so it’s really cool.”

Each encounter tour will have about 20 to 25 people and you just might discover a new favorite animal

 “I think it just really important that people see animals up close, i think people really gain an appreciation and a love for animals by experiencing things hands on.

Barnhill preserve offers guided tours daily, and you can even make it a full day trip by checking out its sister site, magnolia ridge adventure park. To book your upcoming trip, click here.