Information on:

Wellford - Holly Wild Animal Park

2325 Hampton Road


The Meeks' family involvement with animals began in the 1940's on their farm in rural Spartanburg County. (In fact, the park is located on their original home-site, but includes the acquisition of a few surrounding properties). Their collection contained typical farm animals, such as goats, cows, chickens and horses. It soon grew to include South Carolina native species such as squirrels, opossums, foxes and raccoons. Early on, David Meeks, the youngest son in the family, showed an affinity for animals and a powerful talent to handle and understand them. “It just comes naturally to me,” he said. “I can read an animal’s body language with ease.”

This talent and affinity led to a fortuitous event in college, when David’s assigned roommate showed up with a monkey. After the monkey destroyed their dorm room, David made a deal with his roommate: Give me the monkey, and I’ll repair the room. The exchange was the first step, which led to the fulfillment of David’s childhood dream of being able to work with animals from around the world. 

Steadily, species by species, the backyard menagerie grew. As more and more strangers were attracted to the yard, the Meeks decided to structure their property in a way for people to enjoy it. In 1970, father and son opened the M & M Zoo, housing deer, swans, monkeys, capybaras, tigers, pheasants, lions, ducks, bears and otters. Donna (1967-2007), the Asian elephant, still one of the most beloved animals ever at Hollywild, also found her adoptive home in their back yard. It is not often one is called to adopt an elephant!

Our Mission 

Hollywild Animal Park is committed to providing an interactive and enlightening experience for our visitors, as we continually improve the lives of our animals in an enriching and respectful environment.


Haley Hughes

Tuesday, Feb. 13, 2018
I've honestly haven't been to the actual zoo part since I was maybe 5(23 now) but we go to the Christmas lights every year! And it's awesome! We just like to spend time with family and let the kids see the different animals come up to your car and you can feed them and then roast marshmallows over the fire after. It's great!

Lady Johanna Gutierrez-Monge

Tuesday, Jan. 30, 2018
We went to see the Safari lights. Santa's village is a cute little place for small children. They have lots of farm animals. I was not a fan of the reindeer forest, lost of cars in different directions and animals in between. I don't know how healthy that is for the well-being of the animals.

chaitanya mehta

Tuesday, Feb. 6, 2018
Good place for family time. The holiday lights were real good. Kids love the animals. Deer park is also worth visiting. Be patient with the animals in the deer park. They will eventually come to you.

Shelly Navarro

Friday, Dec. 22, 2017
We went for the Holidays Lights Safari. Don't bother going. Very disappointing. It is not like it used to; overpriced, rough roads, lights are not enough to light the way. Even if they tell you to turn the headlights off, people would still keep their lights on because there were not enough lights, making it even harder to appreciate the very few lights that they have. The animals are pitiful, as there were to many vehicles around them, and the food they give you was the overpriced cookies! Deer were running away from the "herd" of vehicles, which is their norm. The lines as you enter the park is too long. There are other places in the Upstate that you could go to for the holiday lights. This is not one of them.

Dewayne Gantt

Thursday, Dec. 14, 2017
Our second time in less than a week going to the Hollywild Christmas Lights. The kids loved it and adults as well. The animals look great. Happy and healthy and the lights were amazing. I recommend visiting. We started a tradition this year and hope to be able to visit every year from here on.

Holly Wild Animal Park is not affiliated with AmericanTowns Media