Forget shopping. You can cuddle a sloth at one of North America's largest traveling exotic animal rescue centers inside a Central New York mall.

Little Ray's Nature Center, is at Destiny USA in Syracuse, New York. You can see a sloth, porcupine, armadillo, fox, hedgehog, snakes, tortoises, frogs, and more at the educational and highly interactive nature center. Learn about the exotic animals during feeding demonstrations, and hands-on interaction.

Credit - Little Ray's Nature Center via Facebook
Credit - Little Ray's Nature Center via Facebook

Little Rays Nature Center started when Paul “Little Ray” Goulet started collecting pet reptiles at home when he was in his teens. It turned into a zoo in 2000 and now tours Canada and the U.S. educating the public on animal conservation.

The fact I get to teach children and adults alike about the amazing animals that surround us, astounds me every day. This once small business has somehow grown into a very large company that now travels across Canada and the U.S. Who knew that one child’s passion could turn into something so spectacular.

The Nature Center is located on the second level above the Cheesecake Factory and is open from 11-6 Wednesday to Saturday and 11-5 on Sunday.


Tickets are available online. You can get them at the door if a time slot is open.

A limited number of tickets are available to ensure an excellent guest experience. Time slots are booked by the hour, we recommend at least that much time to get the full experience - you are welcome to stay as long as you like.

Adults: $16
Kids (3-16): $12.50
Children (2 and under): Free

We do not turn anyone away for financial reasons. If admission cost is an issue for you, please send us a message on Facebook or email us at and we will make arrangements for you.

Learn more at or on their Facebook page.

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