The Fossil Rim Wildlife Center (2155 County Rd. 2008, 254/897-2960, www.fossilrim.org ) features some of the planet’s most endangered animals along with more than 60 other species on 2,700 acres of protected grasslands. The emphasis is on African animals such as rhinoceros, giraffe, cheetah, gazelle, and zebra. Fossil Rim’s 1,800 acres of open space allow visitors to get close-up experiences with the animals through a self-guided 9.5-mile driving tour.
Along the way are an education center, restaurant, petting pasture, nature store, playground, and picnic areas. Note: The Children's Animal Center is undergoing extensive renovation and is expected to be open by early 2011. The animals, with the exception of the carnivores, rhinos and a few others, are free to roam across the hill country  savannas.
Fossil Rim also offers guided tours, mountain bike tours, and hiking tours, and guests can stay overnight at The Lodge or the Foothills Safari Camp. The center’s hours of operation and admission fees vary widely throughout the year, so check the website to see what to expect.