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The 10 Best Reptile Terrariums & Tanks

If you've ever had a reptile, you know that selecting the proper terrarium is one of the most crucial decisions you'll have to make. Because it might spell the difference between life and death depending on the reptile.

To effectively care for many reptiles, specialized equipment such as heat lamps, ultraviolet lights, or even a water pond is required. And your terrarium should be capable of meeting all of your reptile's demands. In addition to being sturdy, watertight, and conveniently accessible for the reptile's entry and exit, it should be durable.

Failing to find a terrarium that can accommodate this can make life much more difficult for you and your pet, which can lead to stress on both of your parts. Certain reptiles, including chameleons, are especially sensitive to stress-related disorders.

This is why BestForPets (bestforpets.org) felt it was so vital to compile this list of the best reptile terrariums & tanks. After reading these, you should have a better grasp of what is required to create a good home for your reptile companion.


Zilla Tropical Vertical Starter Kit

This is by far one of the greatest terrariums you’re going to discover, whether you’re just starting out with reptile care or you’re seeking a new home for smaller animals. The Zilla Tropical Vertical Starter Kit contains almost everything necessary to get started, with the exception of an animal.

The package includes a humidity and temperature gauge, a little halogen dome and bulb, and other basics for the care of reptiles and amphibians, such as a humidity and temperature gauge, a mini halogen dome, and more.

Creating a pond for those who demand it, the terrarium may be securely filled with up to 5 inches of water. Additionally, it comes with coconut husk bedding, which is an excellent bonus. As you may well know, reptiles require a humid environment to prevent dehydration. And this bedding contributes to the terrarium’s increased humidity and temperature.

It also includes a hinged screen top and a front entrance with a lockable latch, making the tank extremely accessible. And the humidity and temperature gauge is really convenient, especially because both data are shown on a single instrument. In addition, the tank has a halogen bulb to assist your reptiles to bask in the heat.

Overall, this is an excellent solution for first-time reptile owners or those who require a smaller tank.


  • Affordable
  • Top hinged screen
  • Front entrance with a lock
  • Temperature and humidity meter
  • Halogen light
  • Coconut husk bedding


  • Smaller than average for bigger reptiles


Zilla Desert Reptile Terrarium

Not all reptiles require a great deal of water to survive. In fact, several reptiles inhabit arid conditions. And these desert-dwelling creatures have specific habitat requirements. This is what makes the Zilla Desert Reptile Terrarium so exceptional. It contains everything necessary to begin growing a little desert-dwelling lizard.

In addition, it is perhaps the most cost-effective reptile terrarium, desert or otherwise.

The kit includes two distinct dome light fixtures, each with a unique type of specialized bulb. One has a white daylight bulb that is most effective for basking.

The other bulb is a black nighttime warming lamp to keep your reptile comfortable even at night. Now, the bulbs are not particularly robust. Therefore, if you reside in a colder climate, you may need to update to more powerful bulbs.

This terrarium, like our top pick, has a temperature and humidity sensor to help you adjust your reptile’s environment. The tank also has an odor-absorbing liner that is extremely simple to clean and nonabrasive.

This setup has virtually everything needed to get started. If only the bulbs were of higher quality, this would have been our top pick.


  • Affordable
  • Complete setup
  • Two Lamp spheres
  • Odor absorbing lining


  • Provided bulbs may be more robust


Tetrafauna Aquatic Turtle Deluxe Aquarium

If you want to grow aquatic and box turtles, you’ll need a tank that can hold a substantial amount of water. However, it will also require a spot for your turtles to bask and remain warm.

The Tetrafauna Aquatic Turtle Deluxe Aquarium can accommodate such a situation.

It is a 20-gallon tank that includes everything necessary for a baby turtle to survive. The tank includes a screened top for ample ventilation and two heat lights to keep your turtles warm. It also has a three-stage, faux-rock filtration pump that circulates your tank’s water and creates an attractive cascade.

We have only a few problems with this tank. First, it will be insufficient for bigger turtles. These are really ideal if you’re rearing a chick! Unless you are raising a single musk turtle, you will need to move to a larger tank as the turtle begins to grow in size.

The bulbs represent our second concern. As with other premade terrarium kits, the lights are not as powerful as we would like. However, they are easily replaceable. Nevertheless, we like the complimentary bonuses that come with the aquarium, such as the feeding sticks and water conditioner.


  • Screen upper
  • Dual heat lamp spheres
  • Built-in pump
  • Free food sticks and water purifiers


  • Expensive
  • Light bulbs might be made more robust
  • Larger species cannot survive in this aquarium.


MarineLand Glass LED Portrait Aquarium

If you have limited room and are seeking for a tiny aquarium to house a single small reptile, the MarineLand Portrait Glass LED Aquarium is an option. It has an elegantly curved glass tank that will fit on any nightstand or small table. This makes it ideal for studio dwellings and dormitories that permit tank pets.

The tank includes a water pump that may be utilized for changing it into fish habitat. It has a single LED light that hangs from the ceiling. And the tank’s glass top enables you to observe your pet from all angles.

We do not advocate placing medium-sized or larger reptiles in this enclosure. A little anole or gecko might live in this tank, but anything larger will require a larger enclosure. However, this is a suitable alternative for individuals who lack the space for a full-size setup.


  • Terrific in space
  • Elegantly curved glass


  • Too tiny for nearly all reptiles
  • No warmth light
  • Optimal for fish


Exo Terra All Glass Terrarium

What if you want to construct a habitat without a kit? You will require a rather simple terrarium. And the Exo Terra All Glass Terrarium is just that. It is a bare-bones glass terrarium that provides you with a clean slate for the reptile’s terrarium.

This is the tallest terrarium in Exo Terra’s collection. This makes it ideal for sticky-fingered climbers and reptiles that inhabit trees. However, remember that you must provide your own tree.

This tank has some extremely cool characteristics. In case you need to install a substrate heater for your reptile, the base is elevated. And it’s waterproof. Additionally, the tank includes two front-swinging, lockable doors that make your terrarium escape-proof. In addition, it has a mesh cover that your reptile will appreciate for both ventilation and climbing ability.


  • Allows for extensive customization
  • Dual doors
  • Raised base for the heater


  • Includes no extra accessories


Hagen Exo Terra All Glass Terrarium

This is the Exo Terra counterpart for ground-dwelling or desert-dwelling reptiles. Instead of being so tall, it has a much broader base, providing more ground space for your reptiles to maneuver. Well, if you had a tiny reptile, perhaps.

This aquarium is ideal for reptiles like leopard geckos and smaller snakes. However, this is not a permanent solution for a ball python. You’ll need to upgrade to something significantly larger.

In addition, the tank incorporates grooves for wiring and tubing. Typically, these surfaces are covered with wallpaper. In this design, however, they are discretely concealed under foam cushioning. In addition, it features two front locking doors and a raised bottom, just like the other Exo Terra on this list. Not bad at all.


  • Excellent for terrestrial reptiles
  • Foam cavity insulation
  • A pair of front-locking doors


  • Contains just one size
  • Not big enough for bigger reptiles
  • No extra accessories


REPTI ZOO Reptile Glass Terrarium

A one-piece tank or terrarium might at times be quite unfavorable. If you ever need to relocate your habitat, you will be in a bind. The REPTI ZOO Reptile Glass Terrarium, however, does not have this difficulty.

This is because it is a deconstructed terrarium. It can be disassembled and reassembled piece by piece. And with this specific terrarium, the process is rather straightforward. However, although being destructible, it nonetheless retains its integrity. It has two glass front doors with locks, a watertight base, and a well-ventilated mesh top.

Stackability is possibly one of the nicest characteristics of this tank. You may acquire many tanks and stack them to create a reptile tower.

Now, this sounds fantastic. However, we do have a few reservations. The manner in which the terrarium is packaged for transportation. Although the firm boasts about its flat packaging to prevent broken parts, it is not doing so. The excessive pressure exerted by the flat packaging on the glass panes caused them to arrive broken.

Additionally, it is not as strong as one would expect. This gives us pause on the stacking of them. We believe that REPTI ZOO has some excellent concepts and ideas, however, the execution may be significantly improved.


  • Mesh upper for airflow
  • Excellent concept for stacking
  • An excellent plan for knockdown


  • Problems with shipping and packaging quality control
  • Not sturdy

Buyer's Guide

Choosing a new home for your pet is a significant decision that takes thought. However, it need not be a challenging choice. If you know what you’re searching for, it may really be pretty painless. Here are some considerations to bear in mind while selecting the ideal terrarium for your reptile pet.

The capacity of Your Tank

Your ball phyton may be just a few inches long today, but after six months of careful maintenance, they will be significantly longer. Unless you want to purchase new terrariums every six months, you might consider purchasing a larger one initially.

Capability against Heat and UVB

In order to remain healthy, many reptiles require the usage of heat lamps or even UVB light bulbs. However, is your terrarium capable of supporting this equipment? Our favorite terrarium, the Zilla Tropical Vertical Starter Kit, has an integrated halogen bulb. With the majority of others, though, you must attach your own lighting.

Horizontal and Vertical Tanks

What does your natural environment consist of? Do they inhabit trees by climbing from branch to branch? Or do they creep along the ground of the desert and between rocks and crevices? As a reptile pet owner, it is your responsibility to recreate an appropriate environment for your pet. And it is difficult to generate a tree-climbing atmosphere if the construction of your tank is short and broad. And the same applies to terrestrial species. Having a tank that is both narrow and vertically organized is insufficient.

Considerations Regarding Water Storage and Pumps for Aquatic Reptiles

If you intend to produce aquatic or box turtles, you will need to pay particular attention to the tank’s water-based components. Your terrarium should be able to accommodate a water pump that circulates fresh, clean water throughout the tank. In addition, you don’t want a tank that can’t store enough water. In addition to being waterproof, the terrarium should include additional ventilation and a mechanism to minimize stagnant water.

Non-Collapsible or Knock-Down Style

After determining the placement of your tank, you should move it as little as possible. Occasionally, though, we are left with no alternative but to move your tank and reptile. However, can a single-piece terrarium be moved without difficulty? With knock-down terrariums, it is simple to disassemble and reassemble your reptile’s home.


Clearly, there is much more to consider when selecting a reptile terrarium than the size of your pet. Frequently, you must consider the future demands of the reptile, heating or UVB lamp factors, and even door accessibility. Obviously, various reptiles have distinct requirements.

For the best reptile terrariums & tanks, The Zilla Tropical Vertical Starter Kit is BestForPets (bestforpets.org)’s choice, whilst the Zilla Desert Reptile terrarium is the greatest value when it comes to selecting an enclosure for your ground-dwelling reptiles.

These evaluations should have provided you with a basic grasp of what to look for when selecting your next reptile terrarium. Because, ultimately, your pet deserves the finest that you can provide.

Author Image

Dr. Deborah Fletcher

Deborah R. Fletcher, DVM, is a skilled veterinarian with more than 15 years of experience dealing with companion and exotic animals. She has experience caring for a variety of animals, including household cats and dogs, reptiles, birds of prey, and even primates. Dr. Fletcher is a valuable part of the BestForPets team, where she contributes to their aim of providing pets and their owners with the finest possible treatment and services.

Veterinarian (DVM) Dr. Deborah Fletcher


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