ASHEBORO, N.C. -- Who doesn't love going to see all the animals at the zoo?

Over the past year, the North Carolina Zoo in Asheboro has become an event more popular destination. Zoo officials say they saw the second most recorded number of guests - more than 870,000 during the 2016-17 fiscal year.

This year's total beat last year's by nearly 75,000 guests.

The highest recorded attendance year ever was 1994-95 - when the Zoo opened its North American region.

The zoo says mild winter temperatures likely boosted attendance this year, but also the addition of nature-based, educational experiences.

Zoofari, an African Wildlife Adventure, which takes guests on an open-air safari bus inside the 40-acre grassland, has become a popular excursion for guests.