L.A. Zoo Lights: Shining Bright, and Cooler Than Ever

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Beginning with the flurry of snowflakes at Entry Plaza, glowing animals welcome visitors on a nighttime journey that includes giant illuminated snowflakes, a disco ball forest, and a whimsical herd of animated elephants. Photo by Jamie Pham

It starts with giant snowflakes floating above the front gate. Then, there’s the wide path snaking through the park in front of the Angela Collier World of Birds Theater. At Elephant Circle, stained-glass animals appear among the tall vegetation. Monkey silhouettes suddenly swing on “vines” above the International Marketplace, and a log cabin sprouts up near the Zoo’s rose garden almost overnight. If you’ve been to the Zoo lately, you may have noticed some changes as we transform about half our grounds into a “wild wonderland of light” for our L.A. Zoo Lights holiday evening experience. By opening night, November 16, everything will be in place and ready to dazzle guests nightly.


Photo by Jamie Pham

Attracting more than 266,000 guests last year, L.A. Zoo Lights has become the must-see event of the holiday season. This year’s experience offers more to see and do than ever before—with a new area to explore and creative updates throughout. For example, the whimsical animated elephants that have been a hit with guests since their 2014 debut are now called “L.A.phants,” with stunning 3D animations evoking iconic city landmarks. And the popular Twinkle Tunnel experience—which was photographed and shared on social media by thousands of guests last year—is bigger than ever, with dynamic swirls of color and a light show at the end.


L.A.phants have been popular with guests since the debut of L.A. Zoo Lights. Photo by Jamie Pham

Santa’s outpost—which will now be in the heart of it all, right next to Reindeer Village, where live reindeer will nightly be on view—has been reimagined as a rustic Nordic cabin, while the “Starlight Safari” experience will feature animal constellations that come to life in the night sky.


Reindeer are a perennial favorite at the Zoo’s holiday festivities. Photo by Jamie Pham

And what of those stained glass animals in Elephant Circle? With a California condor, Asian elephant, Masai giraffe, and more, they are shining symbols of the Zoo’s commitment to conservation. Our very important conservation work here at the Zoo and around the world is supported by nighttime events such as L.A. Zoo Lights. We hope to see you there.


Photo by Jamie Pham

Members save up to 50 percent on tickets to L.A. Zoo Lights. Check your email for your exclusive discount code.


Photo by Jamie Pham


The Holiday LAIR features live reptiles and amphibians among their fanciful, glowing counterparts. Photo by Jamie Pham

L.A. Zoo Lights is much more than a holiday light show! Special seasonal programming includes the L.A. Zoo Lights Wild Wonder Family Slumber overnight, Holiday Happy Hours on December 6 and 13 for guests 21 and older, and the Family New Year’s Eve Party on December 31 for guests of all ages. Members can use their exclusive discount code for savings on Holiday Happy Hour and Family New Year’s Eve tickets, which include admission to L.A. Zoo Lights.


This year, enjoy a Zoo Lights edition of our popular family overnights! Photo by Jamie Pham


Holiday Happy Hours are a wild way to unwind! Photo by Jamie Pham